RENO, NV – FEBRUARY 20, 2016. Dozens of voters line up in front of the Ansari Business Building on the University of Nevada, Reno campus for the 2016 Democratic presidential caucus. On March 1, 2016, 14 caucuses and primaries will be held across the country, the largest number of events on a single day during the 2016 presidential race. CREDIT: Michael Olinger for the Nevada Media Alliance.
With election season in full swing, all eyes will be on the Nevada caucuses. Not only is Nevada the first western state to caucus , but the momentum provided from a win could turn a candidate into a frontrunner. The results will shape what happens on the infamous “Super Tuesday”, which will take place on March 1, when 14 primaries will be held all over the country.
In Nevada, the parties are holding their caucuses on different days, and each uses a different voting method. The Democratic Party uses an open polling process, where participants stand in different areas of a large room that correspond to different candidates. The Republican caucus is done by closed ballot, where the participants’ votes remain anonymous. Before the day of the caucus, voters should be familiar with which system their party is using, and where their caucus sites will be.
The New York Times has provided a chart to show the primaries and caucuses that will be held on Super Tuesday, as well as the delegates at stake. As results from the primaries and caucuses begin to roll in, we will finally begin to see some clarity in the primary race. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton narrowly defeated Senator Bernie Sanders in the Democratic caucus and is looking to maintain her lead going into March. The five remaining Republican candidates (Trump, Cruz, Rubio, Carson, and Kasich) have ramped up their appearances in Nevada, looking to gain a surge of momentum going into Super Tuesday.
More delegates will be handed out on Super Tuesday than on any other single day during the primary election cycle. Politic365.com provides historical data for candidates whose campaigns were made on Super Tuesday, including former presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.
The same article from Politic365.com discusses how the number of voters on Super Tuesday can impact the national election. Iowa, New Hampshire, and Nevada all happen on consecutive weeks, giving the candidates time to focus on each race independently. As there are 14 primaries and caucuses happening on March 1, the polls will indicate which candidates have the broadest appeal among a more diverse group of voters.
While we are still nine months away from the general election in November, the events of the next few weeks will have a large impact on the 2016 presidential election.