Big night for the two outsiders in New Hampshire

Republican presidential candidate, businessman Donald Trump speaks to supporters during a primary night rally, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2016, in Manchester, N.H.  (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Fresh off his New Hampshire victory, Donald Trump is alive and well, and he’s coming south. He crushed his closest competitor by more than a two-to-one ratio last night, wiping the Iowa loss off the slate. The nightmare of the GOP establishment just got a little more real.

Thanks to his second-place finish, John Kasich is coming South too. He doesn’t have much money, he doesn’t have much of a base or organization below the Mason-Dixon line, and conservatives don’t care much for his moderate inclinations. But Kasich is coming anyway, and I honestly wish him luck. His party needs to hear him, even if they aren’t in the mood to listen.

Jeb Bush and Marco Rubio, once mentor and protege, are now like two drowning brawlers more fixated on killing the other guy than in saving their own skin. Both can’t survive, and in the end neither may.

And Ted Cruz? He sits there as pleased and self-satisfied as ever, happy to see the race playing out to his benefit.

On the Democratic side, Bernie Sanders had a great night while Hillary Clinton is glad to put New Hampshire behind her. She lost across the board — down by 11 points among women, down 66 points among those under 30. She lost among liberal Democrats as well as moderate Democrats. She did win among Democrats who make more than $200,000 a year, but that’s not a demographic upon which to build a future. The battle now shifts to terrain more favorable to Clinton, but any hope that she could put the nomination away by the middle of March seems dashed.

The odds of an eventual Clinton victory remain overwhelming. But the road between here and there got a bit longer.