The math going forward is brutal. 🙁
Cruz must win EVERY single delegate between now and June 7th AND then win 2/3 of the massive June 7rd haul in order to get 1237. Put it another way: he has to win 90% of remaining delegates.
Trump needs 551 more delegates, or, 60% of remaining haul. He can get that by winning every delegate through May 10th, or any combination right up till June 7rd.
None of this takes into account unbound delegates because they are too hard to predict. Looks like currently there will be 103 unbound delegates just from state rules.
Further complicating matters is that every state has different rules about what happens to delegates who are “released” when their assigned candidate drops out. Some states count “suspended” campaigns equal to withdrawing completely. Others only free delegates when the candidate formally withdraws from the race. Still others bind delegates through the second or even 3rd ballot no matter what!
Also, I’ve yet to find a state with rules that allow for a candidate to “assign” his/her delegates to the candidate of his/her choice. Meaning, you can’t just say “Add Rubio and Cruz’s numbers together and we’re all good!” Once Rubio (and Bush and Carson and (yeah right!) Kasich) formally end their campaigns, their delegates generally become unbound (see previous paragraph for exceptions). That means that if the delegate in question just really hates Cruz, he can happily vote for Trump OR he could abstain all together.
The likelihood of a contested convention with a floor fight goes up with every successive primary/caucus. Kasich staying in the race absolutely kills Cruz’s chance of hitting 1237 and only marginally impairs Trump’s chances.
FReeper formerly known as Brothers4thID