Republicans worry Trump will hurt more than help party if nominee

Trump has 319 of 1,237 delegates needed to win nomination

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are closer to securing their party’s nominations after big wins on Super Tuesday.

Trump and Clinton both won seven states building on their leads in the delegate counts.

After Trump’s victories Tuesday night, some Republican lawmakers publicly criticized the billionaire, and worry he would do more harm than good as the nominee for the Republican Party this fall.

Even though Trump only has about 25 percent of the delegates needed to win the nomination, after his Super Tuesday’s wins many believe he will be the party’s nominee. It could even be decided before the Wisconsin primary next month.

South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham said the GOP may be at a point where it needs to rally around Ted Cruz as the only way to stop Donald Trump from becoming the Republican presidential nominee.

“I think we’re about ready to lose to the most dishonest politician in America, Hillary Clinton, and how could you do that? Nominate somebody who is crazy. I think dishonest beats crazy. That’s our problem and Donald Trump, I think, is just crazy the things he says,” Graham said.

Political science professor at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Joe Heim, said if anyone is going to stand in Trump’s way to the nomination, either Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio are going to need to exit the race.

“If Rubio or Cruz decide to get out of the race that would change dramatically the potential for the second person to actually win more states,” Heim said.

La Crosse County Republican Chair Bill Feehan admits Trump doesn’t represent mainstream conservatives, but said Trump is driving record numbers of Republicans to the polls. But Feehan said no matter who the Republican nominee ends up being, he believes they will have the support of the party.

“Whether somebody thinks that Donald Trump is their first choice becomes secondary because we can’t go through four more years of gridlock in Washington. We have a Republican Congress and without a Republican president we’re not going to get anything done for this country,” Feehan said.

Heim and Feehan said March 15 is an important day in the race to the White House as well. After that, most of the state primaries are winner-take-all for state delegates. That includes Wisconsin whose primary is April 5.