Game On—Presidential Candidates Seem To Be All Set
With the closing of polls in six state primaries last night, it looks like the major political parties have their presumptive nominees firmly in place. Donald Trump, the last contender in the Republican primaries, raked in his votes, gave his victory speech, and called it a night. But there was more drama on the other side of the aisle.
Let’s Talk About Democrats
On Monday, Hillary Clinton became the presumptive Democratic nominee when an Associated Press poll showed that 571 superdelegates planned to support her. Adding those superdelegates to Clinton’s 1812 pledged delegates, which she had won in primaries and caucuses, got her to the 2,383 total that she needed to be the Democratic party’s one and only. But since superdelegates can, at least hypothetically, change their votes up until the last minute, Bernie Sanders wasn’t buying it. Until, dum dee dee dum, last night.
Let’s Talk About Last Night
Six states had primaries yesterday. CA, NJ, NM, and SD went to Clinton. Sanders took ND and MT. By the time all the votes were counted, Clinton had 2184 pledged delegates to Sanders 1852. Add to that the 571 superdelegates who say they’re voting for Clinton, and she’s at 2,755. Again, those superdelegates could change their minds at the last minute, but almost all of them would have to switch horses, er, candidates for Bernie to get the nomination
Let’s talk about Delegates and Superdelegates
Remember: pledged delegates are Democratic party VIPs who are bound to vote according to how their state voted in the primary or caucuses. Superdelegates are Democratic party extra-VIPs who are like free agents—they can vote for whoever they want.
Let’s talk about Bernie Sanders
Sanders has some thinking to do. Up until last night, he had a legitimate argument to make when he pointed out that Clinton couldn’t be nominated without, like, ¾ of the superdelegates. But with her decisive wins last night, Clinton doesn’t need as many superdelegates to vote for her now—she just needs enough to get her over the top of the magic number, which is 2383. Sanders needs to decide whether to bank on enough delegates switching sides to make it worth battling on, or whether it’s time to make other plans for the summer.