So What Makes Super Tuesday So Er… Super?
Welcome to Super Tuesday, the unofficial name for the most important day of the US Presidential election race. Today sees the biggest number of states (12 plus one territory) go to the polls with the largest number of delegates office chosen on a single day. But what is it and why is it so super?
Here’s our guide to the biggest Tuesday of the year…
Why all the fuss about one day?
No other day in the Primaries has as many delegates chosen, so no other single day during the campaign gives a single candidate as much of an indication of their overall position in the country as a whole.
What are the Primaries?
The Primaries are mini-elections held state-by-state to decide which candidates will represent their parties in the main election on November 8. Republicans vote for the Republican candidate; Democrats vote for the Democrat. During the primaries, candidates are awarded party delegates (important representatives who have the power to finally vote for the president in November). The candidate with the most delegates wins.
So will we be clearer about who is out in front by tomorrow then?
Yes, we should have a good idea who is in the lead both in the Republican and Democrat race. A decisive win for Democrat Hillary Clinton or Republican Donald Trump can cement their place as likely nominee for their respective parties in the presidential election in November.
When will the Super Tuesday results be in?
By Wednesday it should be done and dusted. But this is a busy month with a total of 26 states going to the polls in just 15 days.
Are there any states we should watch today?
Texas is particularly important, because of its size and significance. It has the largest number of delegates – 55 Republican, and 252 Democrat. Plus its home of Republican candidate Ted Cruz who is in a bitter race with Trump. If Cruz loses on home territory to Trump, it will be a huge knock for his White House campaign. But because this is an open primary, anyone can vote regardless of their party affiliation. Many Democrats are considering voting for alternative Republican candidates despite their moderate views, in tactical votes to weaken Trumps campaign.
April, May and June sees 15 more states go to the polls. By July it should become a bit clearer who each party has picked as their presidential candidate. In July, both parties officially announce their presidential candidates and its then that the real presidential campaign begins in earnest as they travel across the country trying to win over as many voters as humanly possible. This is when you’ll see rival candidates for the same party join forces with one bowing out and agreeing to be vice-president.
The next step depends on how many delegates the candidates have for support. Delegates are party members with the power to vote for the official candidate at the convention. The more states a candidate has, the more delegates they have and the more support for the final stage; which is becoming the official presidential candidate.
So when will the final debates be on TV?
After touring the country on the campaign offensive, both candidates will go head to head in three TV debates in September, October and November before the final votes are cast on election day November 8.
538 electors choose the winner- with just 270 needed to make a president.
When will the new President be sworn in?
At the inauguration on January 20th when we say goodbye to Obama and welcome in his replacement.