When will we know the name of the Democratic opponent of Donald Trump (or just maybe Mike Pence)?

There’s frustation in some quarters of the Democrat Party that there are still so many candidates seeking the party’s nomination to contest the presidential election in November 2020 and there is still no obvious front runner. Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are currently the strongest contenders with Pete Buttigieg coming up strongly, but there are still more than a dozen others running and we have still had no state caucuses or primaries.

So when does actual voting start? Iowa will hold its caucuses on Monday 3 February; New Hampshire will have its primary on Tuesday 11 February; Nevada will hold its caucuses on Saturday 22 February; South Carolina will have its primary on Saturday 29 February. All of these four states are small and the first two are very white.

Delegates are awarded to candidates on a proportional basis determined by the voting so, if three or four candidates poll reasonably well in these first states, there may be no clear front runner. Biden may do badly in the early voting and his assumed support among African Americans will not help him in these four states. But he has enough money to stay in the race even if initially he does poorly.

So things may not become clearer until Super Tuesday 3 March when no less than 14 states have primaries, including huge ones like California..

Just a reminder that formally the decision will be made at the Democratic National Convention which will be held from 13-16 July 2020 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. There will be 3,769 delegates and 4,535 including super delegates.

If you’d like to know more about the American political system, you can check out my guide.

Of course, since I’m British, I have no vote in the Democratic primaries, but I would be pleased to see Elizabeth Warren as the presidential candidate with Pete Buttigieg as her running mate. We will see …


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