A Viewer's Guide for Following Super Tuesday Results
Updated: Mar 4, 2020
At post time, the Super Tuesday polls in Santa Barbara are still open for another six hours, so you have plenty of time for a leisurely lunch, a nap and coffee or an alcoholic beverage or three before heading out the door to register to vote. Ten last-minute notes:
1-Local, local, local. Jerrry will be offering analysis in the studio tonight with the KEYT election team, which will be flooding the zone with the Central Coast's most far-flung on-the-scene coverage of local and state races.
2-The national view. Check out “How to Watch Super Tuesday Like a Pro,” Politico’s excellent one-stop, comprehensive summary with all the essential facts, figures and latest trends from all 14 Super Tuesday states, with good perspective on how to think about all the political moving parts.
3-Why rush? Still haven’t voted? Or even registered? No worries! Thanks to California’s same-day registration law, you needn’t bestir yourself from the couch until, oh say, 7 p.m., an hour before polls close. Noozhawk has all the how-tos on last minute-voting.
4-Cut the cable. If Fox and MSNBC cancel each other out in your mind, and CNN’s coverage is just too breathless and self-regarding, check out the Washington Post home page,for liverstream coverage and results with their team of political reporters, starting at 4 pm PST.
5-Who’s up, who’s down. The first results from Santa Barbara County races are scheduled to be released at 8:05 pm PDT, with the first update at 9 pm, which you can check via the Election Results button on the home page for Joe Holland’s shop. Remember that our local Assembly, state Senate and House of Representatives races include votes from multiple counties, so follow those via the Secretary of State’s web page.
6-AD 37. Here’s the latest look at how the ballots are coming in for our wide-open 37th Assembly District race, from Paul Mitchell and Political Data Inc.
7-Learn how to delegate. It's largely irrelevant who wins the popular vote in any state tonight -- all that matters is how those numbers get strained through the calculus of the party’s arcane primary rules to determine how many delegates each candidate wins to the national convention in Milwaukee July 13-16. With tonight's results determining about one-third of the total delegates, and the magic number for the nomination set at 1,991, here are three scenarios to assess Super Tuesday, from the best political minds at NBC:
Scenario #1: Joe Biden’s super night.
This back-of-envelope delegate math assumes Biden gets Hillary Clinton-like margins in the South, gets Elizabeth Warren and/or Michael Bloomberg to split up the delegates in California and Texas, and sees Bloomberg failing to hit the 15 percent threshold for delegates in several states, especially in the South:
So even on a great night for Biden, Sanders edges Biden by 50 to 60 delegates.
Scenario #2: Bernie Sanders’ super night:
This rough delegate math assumes Sanders grabbing more than half of the delegates out of California and Texas; Warren failing to hit 15 percent in many of the Sanders-friendly states; and Bloomberg picking up delegates in the South (thus denying Biden those delegates):
Under that scenario, Sanders comes out of Super Tuesday with nearly 250 more delegates than Biden.
Scenario #3: Somewhere in the middle:
Or you have something right down the middle, with Sanders emerging from Super Tuesday +150 over Biden.
For us, Sanders’ magic number tonight is 600 delegates. If he’s above it, it means he got close to (or surpassed) a majority of all 1,344 delegates.
Below it, however, means a solid majority of delegates went elsewhere.
And the upcoming primaries – in Mississippi (March 10), Florida (March 17) and Georgia (March 24) – don’t get easier for Sanders.
8-Now why did I do that? Did you vote early for a presidential candidate who already dropped out? You can still fix things if you haven't sent in your ballot, but there's no solution if you already put it in the mail -- except to decide, along with conservative commentator Jonah Goldeberg, that early voting really is a bad idea.
9-Chump change. All Newsmakers know that every political campaign is best deconstructed by looking at three fundamentals: a) Money; b) Organization and; c) Message.
In Santa Barbara's spotlight race, the Das Williams-Laura Capps First District Supervisor's contest, there's not much question that he's prevailed on a) (thanks to a $250,000 fundraising head start) and b) (thanks in part to sweetheart early endorsements by the Democratic Party and other liberal groups with a rooting interest in his incumbency).
For Capps to prevail, then, it will have to be on the strength of her message, namely that Das is too cozy and accommodating to the special interests that pour money into his campaign funds, clear evidence that the county's whole campaign finance system needs fixing.
If you haven't made up your mind in this race yet, the key argument was summed up in two words during the third of their debates, when she criticized him for accepting $62,000 in contributions from the cannabis industry before and during the time he was writing the law that regulates them: "Chump change," he scoffed at her, sniffing about the amount.
And therein lies her case.