This Is What happens To Republican Delegates If No One Clinches A Majority Before The Convention In July.
It’s impossible for everyone else, but it’s still possible that Donald Trump will have garnered 1,237 of the 2,472 delegates necessary to become the Republican Presidential nominee by July. If he does so, he will become the nominee on the first ballot and represent the party in the November election.
If he doesn’t, although it is not a requirement, in light of the hostility of the delegate frenzy, there will most likely be a contested convention and a series of votes to figure out who the Republican nominee will be.
What Trump wants are bound delegates, delegates that are obligated to vote for him on the first ballot as a result of the rules of the state they represent. He also needs unbound delegates, delegates who are free to vote for whomever they like. On the Democratic side unbound delegates are called ‘Super-delegates.’
Trump’s concern is that he may not have enough support from unbound delegate to cinch the nomination in the first round. Although, he clearly has the popular vote of the people, his own party, the Republican party, is putting forth their best effort to insure that Trump is not their candidate. Even going so far as to increase the risk of losing the election to the other side to do so.
When the convention begins roughy 2,363 of the 2,472 delegates will be bound to a specific candidate. After the first vote that all changes.
As with the initial delegate allocation process, the rules vary by state. They are complicated, incomplete, and a contested convention fight was often not even taken into consideration by some states when their rules were originally implemented.
In some states, delegates are only bound to a candidate for one vote. In others, they’re bound for two or sometimes three votes. And in some states, delegates are bound to a candidate until that candidate “releases” them, a step that may require a written release statement in order for the delegate to become unbound from the candidate.
The total of bound and unbound delegates currently looks like this:
Note that the graphic above doesn’t assess which bound delegates are bound to whom. But we can make some quick estimates. Trump has an advantage, for example, in that his 99 delegates from Florida will be bound to him for a while. If he does well in California, he holds those delegates for at least two rounds of voting.
Again, much of this is subject to asterisks and qualifiers. (Including that some bound delegates may end up unbound if candidates drop out.)
In Alaska, California, Maryland, Nebraska, Oregon and Texas, candidates who do badly in one round see their delegates unbound for the next. (In Alaska, it’s whoever comes in last. In California, a candidate needs 10 percent of the vote; in Texas, 20 percent. In the other states, he needs 35 percent.) So it’s tricky to game out how subsequent rounds of voting will happen without knowing what the field looks like going in.
As each round progresses more and more of the bound delegates are released and become unbound.
It should be clear, though, that Trump’s in trouble once the first round of voting is over. After Round 1, only a third of the bound delegates are still bound to candidates. By Round 3, it’s under 10 percent. Which is why Sen. Ted Cruz’s efforts to make sure that he’s the second choice of bound Trump delegates is so savvy. If Trump doesn’t get a majority in Round 1, Cruz could pick off a lot of his support.
It’s tricky, the process of getting to Cleveland is complicated, the number of bound and unbound delegates change with every vote, and there are 50 different sets of rules to consider. Simple or not, this is the process the Republican party uses to determine which candidate will represent them as the nominee for the President of the United States Of America.
VIDEO: Here’s What Happens To Republican Delegates If No One Has A Majority
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sources: Youtube, Donaldtrump.com, Fox News, Washingtonpost.com