When the primary schedule for 2020 was announced last year, it was apparent to most that the calendar had shifted up significantly. By March 10th, nearly 50% of all pledged delegates will have been determined. For any candidate hoping to amass a majority of pledged delegates and win on the first ballots, the initial states would be critical.
Bernie has won each of the three contests so far. By my tally, he is now 2 delegates ahead of the pace he needs to maintain to win an outright majority of pledged delegates (he was 7 delegates behind after New Hampshire).
The next big delegate allocations are:
- South Carolina: by my estimate, Bernie needs to win 22 out of 54 delegates to remain on track to win an outright majority of pledged delegates.
- Super Tuesday: 1344 delegates will be allocated, that is 34% of all pledged delegates available. Bernie needs to win 743 of those delegates to remain on track to win an outright majority.
Super Tuesday may end up being even more important this year. The biggest delegate hauls are in Texas and California (a total of 643 delegates in those states alone. Both states have significant Latino populations. Bernie won an outright majority of Latino voters in Nevada, many of them first-time caucus goers. Bernie needs to perform very well in both CA and TX, he needs to win over 50% of the delegates available in both states. That said, he ended up winning two-thirds of the delegates in Nevada. If he comes close to that number in California and/or Texas, it becomes very difficult for anyone else to catch up to him.
NOTE: Many of the states listed below as “Closed” permit primary day registration or changes in party affiliation, some even allow unaffiliated voters to participate in one of the party primaries. If you have any doubts about your eligibility, check your state’s primary rules.
|Date||STATE||DELEGATES||Unpledged||TYPE||Estimated Delegates (Based on 2016 result)||Delegates Bernie Needs to Win in this state||Bernie’s actual 2020 delegate haul||+/- pace needed to win|
|2/22/2020||NV||36||12||Closed Caucus (del)||15||15||24||9|
|3/3/2020||ME||24||8||Closed Primary (del)||12||15|
|3/10/2020||ND||14||4||Open Caucus (del)||7||8|