Today is Super Tuesday Three, and a lot of states are voting and a lot of delegates are being awarded. One of the states that is voting today is my home state, North Carolina. Here's what you need to know, in polling, process, and delegates apportionment.
- CURRENT POLLING -
PPP: Public Policy Polling put out their latest data on Sunday, March 13th. They have Trump up over Cruz.
Compared to a month ago Trump's support is up 15 points and Cruz's is up 14 points. Kasich's remained in place, and Rubio has seen his support collapse 9 points. Trump appears to already be building up a lead among early voters- he's at 46% to 38% for Cruz, 11% for Kasich, and 4% for Rubio. Among those planning to vote on election day Trump gets 43% to 32% for Cruz, 11% for Kasich, and 8% for Rubio.
CIVITAS: From last week, the Civitas poll asked a very interesting question. First, they included all candidates, including those who have dropped out. Trump came in at 32%, Cruz at 26%, Kasich at 11%, Rubio at 11%, and 8% total went to the candidates who have dropped out.
However, their follow-up question really gets interesting. For respondents who chose Huckabee, Paul, Santorum, Bush, Carson, Christie, Fiorina, Gilmore, they were then asked who voters would pick if they were selecting ONLY from among the four still in the race.
Of those four, TED CRUZ WINS.
28% Ted Cruz
14% Donald Trump
19% John Kasich
12% Marco Rubio
Add that information to the following from the above PPP poll:
If there's a path to #StopTrump in North Carolina it's Kasich and Rubio voters uniting around Cruz. Trump's lead over Cruz declines to 49/43 when the two are matched head to head because Rubio voters overwhelmingly move to Cruz in that scenario (70/20) and Kasich voters move to Cruz as well, although by a pretty narrow 39/34 margin.
“If John Kasich and Marco Rubio really combine for 20% of the vote in North Carolina on Tuesday Donald Trump will almost definitely win the state,” said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy Polling. “The only way he’s likely to bestopped is if supporters of the also rans shift their support to Ted Cruz.”
Put the information from the two polls above together and the picture is pretty clear that Ted Cruz can run a close second or even win the state. Nothing is certain.
Well ... one thing is certain, it's a fully proportional state, so a close second is still a big haul of delegates. Which leads us to ...
- HOW DELEGATES ARE ASSIGNED -
There are 72 delegates up for grabs in North Carolina, assigned proportionally. As with all states, North Carolina has 10 base "At Large" delegates. They can be from any district. The state also has 20 "bonus" delegates as a result of its past Republican electoral success. There are thirteen Congressional Districts, which by rule have 3 delegates apiece for a total of 39. And of course, there are the three RNC delegates, bringing the total to 72.
So the percentage of the vote will absolutely determine the degree of success for each candidate including whoever wins the largest share of the popular vote.
- PROCESS -
Polls will be open from 6:30 a.m. until 7:30 p.m. Here is the State Board of Elections website.
There is only one significant change to the process of voting in North Carolina's primary in 2016: Voter ID.
Voters who go to the polls today in North Carolina will be required to show a valid photo ID. This was not previously the case, as I can tell you from personal experience. For voters who do not have a photo ID, there are two things you can do. If you simply forgot it, you can fill out a provisional ballot and then bring your ID to the board of elections office later. Convenient for early voters, not as much for today since you have to do it before the votes are counted in order for yours to count.
You also have an option if you simply do not have a valid form of identification. You can sign a affidavit and present alternate forms of identification. This "reasonable impediment exception" helps if, for example, you still have a driver's license from a state you moved here from. A "reasonable impediment." You have to explain why you don't have a photo ID, and provide alternate means of identification. Elections officials say they will follow up with voters after today and attempt to assist voters with obtaining their photo ID prior to the November election.
- SUMMARY -
If you're a North Carolina voter, consider the polling data above before you make your choice. You should not only be deciding who you wish to be the nominee, but who you wish not to be, and vote to make the most important of those two things happen.
Have your photo ID. Or a good excuse.
And finally, just remember this, no matter how they say it is going or what you hear, we are a proportional state. A close race is the best race, even if your guy isn't the leader.
Happy Super Tuesday 3, North Carolina! For once, we have a real impact on the process!