Preparing for the election

How primaries and caucuses and shaking out across the country

Photo courtesy of chrisjtse via Creative Commons

Photo courtesy of chrisjtse via Creative Commons

With the 2020 presidential election on November 3rd, primaries and caucuses take place across the nation starting February throughout June. Primaries and caucuses are held in an attempt to reduce the number of candidates by allowing voters to show their preferred candidate early on. Caucuses are held by individual parties while primaries are run by local or state governments. Caucuses are usually closed to all voters besides the caucuses’ respective party, while primaries are open to all parties. Caucuses are slowly losing ground because primaries are less likely to be corrupt. “No voting equipment is being used, and professional election administration officials are not managing the process,” said CNN via the Associated Press.

The first caucuses of 2020 took place in Iowa and resulted in a mess. Though the caucuses were held on the third of February, the delegate count was complete on February 9th. While a winner on the democratic side has not been declared, there is a front runner, and the Bernie Sanders team has said they will request a recanvass. Pete Buttigieg received 26.2% of votes and 13 delegates, the majority for the state of Iowa. Bernie Sanders was a close second with 26% of votes and 12 delegates. Elizabeth Warren won 18% of votes and 8 delegates, with Amy Klobuchar following her winning 12.3% of votes and only 1 delegate. On the Republican side, Donald Trump won 97% of the votes and Bill Weld received 1.2% of votes. Trump got 39 delegates but Weld was able to snag one. 

On February 11th, both democratic and republican primaries were held in New Hampshire. In New Hampshire, Bernie Sanders won with 25.7% of votes, overall winning 9 more delegates. Pete Buttigieg also won 9 delegates, yet only received 24.4% of votes. Amy Klobuchar got 6 delegates with 19.8% of votes; the rest of the democratic candidates failed to win any delegates. Donald Trump won for the republicans with 85.7% of the votes, receiving all 22 delegates. 

Lastly, on February 22nd, the Democratic caucus was held in Nevada, while the Republican caucus was canceled. Nevada’s republican party “endorsed President Trump and voters by acclamation to bind its delegates for the Republican National Convention to his campaign” tweeted on February 22nd via the Nevada GOP Twitter account. Therefore, Trump received all 25 delegates from Nevada. Bernie Sanders won Nevada with 46.8% of votes, getting 24 delegates. Joe Biden won 20.2% of votes and 9 delegates, followed by Pete Buttigieg, winning 14.3% of votes and 3 delegates. None of the other candidates received enough votes to win delegates.

With several primaries and caucuses remaining, there are many candidates still in the race and many states that will show their great influence upon the candidates. According to Emily Duley, a history teacher at Battlefield, “any swing states or any state with diversity such as California, Virginia, Florida, or Texas are the best indicators of favored candidates.” With Super Tuesday approaching, 1,617 delegates could be awarded to democratic candidates, and push the voters of the US closer to November 3rd.