The event of 2 of the Top 3 being country-type artists is severely limiting the possibility of Haley Reinhart winning the competition.
Suppose we know that Haley is edging out Scotty McCreery in the voting as it is right now. I find this unlikely, given how much Scotty has over-performed his numbers, but let’s assume it for the sake of argument. Then, supposing that this week Lauren Alaina is eliminated, where will all her votes go?
The answer is probably not “nowhere”. Finales in American Idol tend to get a huge number of votes, more than any other stage in the competition. Season 8 had 100 million votes in the finale, whereas there were only 88 million votes in the Top 3 round. The multi-million votes for Danny Gokey likely weren’t lost. What I think happened was that Gokey’s votes were apportioned among the two remaining contestants (most for Kris Allen, I’d guess), and then people voted 13% more because of excitement over the finale. The only other explanation is that all of Gokey’s votes dropped out, but the remaining voters voted approximately 50% more times. This is possible, but I don’t find it that likely.
Thus the outcome that’s most likely is that Lauren is eliminated, Scotty picks up her votes, and beats Haley in the finale by a comfortable margin. Needless to say, if Scotty were to somehow be eliminated this week, the situation is mostly the same, though Haley’s chances might improve somewhat.
Now, there could be a hidden variable here, in that Haley may have been picking up votes from all of the contestants who have gone in recent weeks (sort of like The Highlander). Casey Abrams’s votes very probably could have gone to her, as well as Jacob Lusk’s and James Durbin’s.
But only if Haley has a very substantial lead can she hope to win. And as much as I’d like that outcome, I wouldn’t put any money on it.