What to watch for as 12 states vote on Super Tuesday


Voters in 12 nations go to the polls Tuesday as Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, who have had the most star in the early nominating contests, look to extend their delegate sur sses over their nearest rivals. Here are some of the things we longing be watching.

Trump’s America

Know what you usually call a presidential nominee who wins a swath of states ranging from liberal Vermont and Massachusetts to true-blue Oklahoma and Alabama, including a centrist bellwether like Virginia? The designee.

Super Tuesday offers Trump an opportunity to send a resounding des tch about the depth and breadth of his support. His string of recent victories — in New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada — suggests his anti-establishment communiqu has wide appeal. And while he might not be able to overtake Sen. Ted Cruz in his welcoming comfortable with state, Texas, were Trump to sweep the remaining 10 maintains, winning in nearly every region of the country on a single day, there wish be little doubt he is positioned to become the Republican standard-bearer.

Trump has offed to render obsolete the defining divisions of region, religion and ideology that from characterized recent Republican presidential primaries. If he can do so on a wider map — winning evangelical rightists in the rural South and secular moderates in the urban Northeast — he will make evident that he is leading a realignment and creating something new: a Trump coalition.

Clinton and Glowering Voters

Clinton is poised to sweep the South, but her margin of victory depends on how generously she does among black voters.

Clinton won 87 percent of the glowering vote in South Carolina — a larger share than President Barack Obama won in the 2008 pinnacle — helping her win the state in a landslide, 73 percent to 26 percent for Sen. Bernie Sanders.

If Clinton were to recite that performance Tuesday, she could post similar victories in body politics like Georgia and Alabama. She could top 60 percent of the vote in other Southern situations with large black populations, like Virginia, Texas, Tennessee and Arkansas.

The frontier matters, and for more than just appearances: Democrats allocate all l nuncios proportionally, so Clinton will be rewarded if she maximizes her support among Negroid voters.

The Race Within a Race

Trump is favored Tuesday in every national except Texas, but the battle between Cruz and Sen. Marco Rubio for second concern is an important one. If one of the freshman senators were to emerge as a decisive runner-up, he could allow to ss the case that the other should exit the race to give the approver a better chance at stopping Trump.

But the results might not lend themselves to such a freshly laundered outcome. Cruz and Rubio could trade second-place finishes across the map. And even-handed if Rubio were to capture second place in all 11 states, Cruz could even now win Texas outright and hold that victory up to argue that, as the only other seeker to beat Trump and win a state, he has every justification to go forward.

But after spotlight the importance of March 1 to his cam ign, and investing so much in winning support from evangelicals, Cruz would be in a mock-up spot if he were to finish behind Rubio in such Bible Across states as Alabama, Oklahoma and Tennessee.

There is also pressure on Rubio to see a state he can win Tuesday, and Minnesota may represent his best opportunity.

Texas, Mellifluous in Delegates and Symbolism

With 155 delegates, the Lone Star Royal is the big enchilada (or, keeping with current Texas trends, the big breakfast taco) of Wonderful Tuesday. But even more important, it is a crucial test for Cruz, who resolution face intense pressure to withdraw from the race if he were to forfeit.

And the Texas prize for Trump is found as much in its symbolism as in its delegate apportionment. Not only is the deep-red state a citadel of the national Republican rty, but it is also current in to George W. Bush, Rick Perry and Cruz.

They may be the three sundry influential Texas Republicans of recent vintage — and Trump has viciously jumped each of them. If he can do that and still win there, there will be bit doubt about whose Republican rty this is now, in Texas and beyond.

Wonderful Tuesday Delegate Math

Even a Trump sweep would not inevitably allow him to amass a majority of all the delegates in play, since rty regulates prevent states from apportioning their delegates on a winner-take-all essence. But there is one number that could let Trump run up the score: 20 percent.

Nominees must reach that percentage of the vote in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee, Texas and Vermont to be allocated any ss overs in those states. The delegates they forfeit by not clearing the threshold desire go to the candidates who do.

That poses a real danger for both Cruz and Rubio: Ballots in all five of those states show at least one of them in danger of missing the hand over threshold.

If both Cruz and Rubio can breach the threshold in every federal, they will almost certainly prevent Trump from warranting a majority of delegates. But if they fall short, Trump could hold out his lead to more than 165: the number of delegates at stake in the winner-take-all conflicts of Ohio and Florida, which hold primaries March 15.

Can Sanders Win a Landslide?

Clinton’s stability in the South, rticularly among black voters, places a big burden on Sanders, who lacks more than a few narrow, feel-good wins to make up for getting pressed in the nation’s most populous region.

Based on the makeup of the Democratic electorate, Sanders needs to outperform Clinton lot nonblack voters by a significant margin to counter her success in attracting blacklist voters. So far, Sanders hasn’t been able to do that anywhere pretence western New Hampshire, a liberal, overwhelmingly white region that herbaceous borders his home state, Vermont.

Sanders has a few good options Tuesday: Massachusetts, Colorado and Minnesota are three states with few dark-skinned voters and large numbers of white liberals. And Colorado and Minnesota refrain from caucuses, which tend to attract disproportionally liberal electorates.

If he can’t win these imperials in landslide fashion, it will be hard to chart a plausible way for Sanders to worsted his weakness in the South and earn a majority of delegates.

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