After March 5, news outlets were saying that the Republican race was becoming a Trump vs Cruz race. At the time, there were still two other Republican candidates. After his loss in Florida on March 15, Marco Rubio officially dropped out of the race, leaving three candidates, Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and John Kasich.
Right now, it’s still anyone’s game to win the nomination. The candidates still have a long road ahead of them before they can snag their party’s nomination at the national conventions. In each election, delegates are given to each candidate, but the candidate that wins the primary receives the majority of delegates.
Candidates need to reach the needed 1,237 delegates in order to gain the party nomination. Out of the original 2,472 delegates, there are still 1,049 delegates left for candidates to win. As of March 20, Trump has 673, Cruz has 411 and Kasich has 143. None have for sure won because of how many delegates are left.
But there is also the question of the almost 200 delegates that previous candidates won before dropping out. Where do their delegates go? Depending on what state the delegates are from, there are a few ways the current candidates can gain these delegates before the convention. The delegates can back another candidate by voting for them at the convention, or the candidate they were supporting that dropped out can back one of the remaining candidates, giving them their delegates.
With the way the race is going, if he does not gain a substantial amount of delegates in the upcoming primaries, Kasich does not have a good chance at winning the nomination. But, if he stays in the race until the convention, he can still keep Trump and Cruz from a one-on-one race, gaining some delegates along the way.
Trump currently leads the delegate count, which is making some Republican Leaders debating what would happen at the convention on July 18-21. Some are thinking of ways to keep Trump from gaining more delegates, one is Kasich staying in the race.
Currently, none of the candidates look like they will reach the magic number unless a miracle happens. If none of the three candidates win the required delegate count, a Contested Convention will take place. If that happens, the delegate count would not matter and any of the three candidates could win the nomination because all 2,472 delegates become fair game and vote for whoever they want once the Republican Leaders set out the rules for the Contested Convention.
Not only does the Republican party have three candidates the people can still vote for and that are looking to grab delegates, the Democratic race is still far from over.
Within the democratic party, a candidate needs to win 2,383 delegates to earn the nomination. So far, without superdelegates who do not officially vote on their candidate until the national convention, Clinton has 1,147 delegates, while Sanders has 856. Even though there is a 291 delegate lead by Clinton, Sanders could win even without the superdelegates vote. With the remaining 15 primary election days, there are still 2,295 delegates that either candidate can win.
The superdelegates that are currently pledged to each candidate does make Clinton’s lead significantly bigger, but that does not mean the superdelegates won’t switch over to Sanders if he gains momentum in the remaining primaries. In 2008, then-senator Barack Obama trailed Clinton in superdelegates until May. After that, Obama won the majority of superdelegates and won the democratic nomination.
The superdelegates can and do swing the nomination in favor of the most popular candidate, but they will not officially vote until July 25-28, during the Democratic National Convention.
We are five months away from the national conventions, so the presidential race for each party is not set in stone yet. With the remaining primaries, the race is anyone’s win.