Super Tuesday: the bare essentials

Call it what you want—Super Tuesday, Super-Duper Tuesday, whatever. Anyway you slice it, tomorrow is huge. And this year, with four viable contenders still in the race, it’s going to be hugely exciting. Voters in more than 20 states across the country will head to the polls Tuesday to choose their nominees to be the ...

596699_supertuesday_05.jpg
596699_supertuesday_05.jpg

Call it what you want—Super Tuesday, Super-Duper Tuesday, whatever. Anyway you slice it, tomorrow is huge. And this year, with four viable contenders still in the race, it's going to be hugely exciting.

Voters in more than 20 states across the country will head to the polls Tuesday to choose their nominees to be the next U.S. president. The Democrats and the Republicans have slightly different rules for allocating delegates and are competing in a slightly different list of states. Some are primaries; some are caucuses. If you really want to learn all the nitty-gritty details, go here. But the bottom line is that Tuesday matters.

A Democrat needs 2,205 delegates to win the nomination, while a Republican needs 1,191. As of now, here's the breakdown of how the big four have fared:

Call it what you want—Super Tuesday, Super-Duper Tuesday, whatever. Anyway you slice it, tomorrow is huge. And this year, with four viable contenders still in the race, it’s going to be hugely exciting.

Voters in more than 20 states across the country will head to the polls Tuesday to choose their nominees to be the next U.S. president. The Democrats and the Republicans have slightly different rules for allocating delegates and are competing in a slightly different list of states. Some are primaries; some are caucuses. If you really want to learn all the nitty-gritty details, go here. But the bottom line is that Tuesday matters.

A Democrat needs 2,205 delegates to win the nomination, while a Republican needs 1,191. As of now, here’s the breakdown of how the big four have fared:

Democrats

Republicans

Barack Obama:

34

John McCain:

89

Hillary Clinton:

21

Mitt Romney:

27

With relatively few delegates already chosen and a big pile of them up for grabs tomorrow, Tuesday is going to be the super indeed. Will it be decisive? On the Republican side, probably. Polls show John McCain with a healthy lead in most of the country, and Mike Huckabee will likely draw conservative votes away from McCain’s rival Mitt Romney. But it’s anybody’s guess whether either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama will emerge the clear winner tomorrow, since the polls have narrowed. (Then you have the super delegates, a wild card making up 20 percent of the total Democratic delegate count. They don’t choose until the convention.)

We’ll start knowing just what the voters actually decided starting in the afternoon, when West Virginia Republicans are expected to report the results of their statewide convention. Then, the talking heads on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC will fill the air with blather until 7 p.m. EST, when the numbers from the first primaries start trickling in. Stay tuned…

UPDATE: Passport reader “Boz” writes in with a good point—

The NYT link you provided does not include Las Vegas or Iowa delegates.  While not officially pledged (because the states do their own thing later), they are pretty certain now that the elections have been held. 

CNN has the breakdown at Obama 63, Clinton 48 for pledged delegates and Clinton 232, Obama 158 if you include superdelegates.

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