Let’s play some California one on one.

There are a number of different Hasidic sects in New York.  Kasich’s campaign totally cocked things up, and sent him to spend four hours with a sect that votes exclusively Democratic.  He explained to them the significance of the Passover as it relates to Christianity.  Johnny is going to be pissed when he realizes he made a fool of himself.   His campaign is subject to this kind of error.  These people are over tasked and understaffed.

Kasich’s running on empty, and I have no idea where he’s getting his money.  I’ll assume he’s got enough left to stay in it for a while, but after the Northeast primaries of the next two and a half weeks he’s got to have money problems.  He’s got a few big buck true believers, and that’s all he’s got.  There is just no way he’ll have money to compete in California, in any meaningful sense.  If he’s got anything left at all he should spend it in New Jersey, hoping for a Hail Mary.  Cruz won’t be competing there, if he’s got any sense, and he does.

So effectively, if not technically, in the Big Enchilada, California, it’s one on one.  I heard on With All Due Respect that Trump has hired a California Campaign Director, who will be coming out here in two weeks.

Let’s parse that.  He waited until now to hire one?  He hired someone from outside the state?  And this guy is going to waste the next two weeks before he even comes out here?  Trump and Manafort are operating by the seat of their pants.  And they’re up against some true local pros, guys who know the Republican politics of this state as well as anybody.

I wasn’t old enough to vote the last time a California Republican primary mattered in California.  I was only eighteen.  This is a totally new experience, for all concerned, campaigns, and media,  and voters alike.  This is the kind of environment where local knowledge is critical.  Cruz has it, and Trump doesn’t.  And like the song said, “It’s too late, baby, it’s too late.”

So I’m feeling pretty good about California, and I read Nate Silver’s state by state analysis at 538.com, and I feel even better.  Nate has done his homework, and I’m going to agree with him, but only until he gets to California, where I have some local knowledge.  The way Nate has it, Trump wins 88-84.  That’s just wrong.  Cruz will get a big win in California.

Nate has Trump 83 votes short of 1237.  I think it will be at least 120.  Either way, it’s not close enough for Trump to win.  Not if you know who these people are, the way I do.  Because I’ve been one of them my whole life.

I think it was the night of June 6th, 1964, when the results of the California primary came in.  I was living with my mother and grandmother in Pleasant Hill, and attending Diablo Valley College.  I’d been reading National Review since I was fifteen, and I was a strong Goldwater man, even though I couldn’t vote.  Walter Cronkite called the election for Goldwater, and almost lost his composure, he was so shocked and disappointed.

That got me hooked on politics, right there.

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