Super Duper Tuesday

Things are starting to look interesting in the battle to become the next ‘leader of the free world.’ And I use that term with ever-increasing irony…

The real story of the day is the tooth-and-nail fight for the Democratic nomination. Hillary Clinton holds the lead in total delegates received thus far with 1076; she won eight states and claimed crucial victories in California, New York, Massachusetts, and New Jersey. Yet Barack Obama is not far behind with 1006, winning 13 total states and convincing double-digit majorities in eleven of those (Illinois, Georgia, Alabama, Minnesota, and several western states).

The Obama campaign has been gaining momentum in recent weeks; his January fund-raising total of $32 million has cast a lofty shadow over Clinton’s monthly total of $13.5 million. In fact, Clinton has taken a page from the book of Romney and made a personal loan of $5 million to keep her campaign competitive in coming weeks.

On the Republican front, John McCain didn’t do quite as strongly as expected, but finished leaps ahead of his competition. McCain was the only Republican candidate to win more than 50 delegates in any state, accomplishing the feat in the delegate-rich states of California, New York, Missouri, Illinois, Arizona, and New Jersey.

He leads the scorecard of total delegates received thus far in the Republican contest:

  1. McCain 724 (9 states on Super Tuesday)
  2. Romney 281 (7 states)
  3. Huckabee 196 (5 states)
  4. Paul 14 (0 states)      (1,191 delegates needed for victory)

Mitt Romney made gains in many Western states (claiming victories in Colorado, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Utah, Maine, Alaska, North Dakota, and Montana) while Mike Huckabee played well in mostly southern states (Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Arkansas, and West Virginia). Still, it was John McCain that emerged as the front-runner; he stands in good position to secure the Republican nomination in coming weeks.

Up next on the radar for Republicans is this Saturday’s contest in Louisiana, Washington, and Kansas. The Democrats will compete in Louisiana, Washington, Nebraska, and Maine.

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