Analysis: Why fewer states than ever could pick the next president — and who could — on Super Tuesday
For decades, Republican presidential hopefuls have staked their campaigns on a contested Iowa caucus — but that process is changing. In 2016, the nation went to the polls on Super Tuesday, the final day of the Republican presidential nominating season.
But this year, while Iowa went more-or-less as expected, voters went to the polls nationwide on March 1, and just a handful of states held their contests. And for the first time in history, not a single primary will go to the winner. Instead, as primaries are now known as contests with states, the winner will be the candidate with the most delegates from the more than 30 candidates who were on the ballot in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
If you believe the conventional wisdom, that would be Donald Trump or Mike Pence. But that’s not possible for all candidates. At the same time, no candidate has the 1,237 delegates that Sen. Ted Cruz will receive. And when all states on Super Tuesday held their contests, it would have been impossible to tell Cruz from the rest of them. At this point, it’s hard to say with certainty who will even be on the ballot in each state and whether they’ll get any delegates.
But what follows aren’t predictions about who might win and who might not win. They’re simply a look at who might have been on the ballot in each state and what a few factors might mean for their success on Super Tuesday.
In any case, there’s plenty here on whom the primary electorate might decide — and on how that vote might play out.
Who was on the ballot in each Super Tuesday state?
And as you might have guessed, it was different this year than in past elections. It was different even from that of 2012 — when states went to the polls in late