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Democrats: Clinton Clinches the Democratic Nomination

By the Election Graphs count, Clinton now has 2745 delegates, which puts her well over the 2383 require to clinch the nomination.

As they did with the Republicans, AP went out and called many still publicly uncommitted superdelegates and was able to get the winning candidate to the magic number in their count a little earlier than those of us only using public commitments. In this case AP made their announcement Monday. The count here went over the magic number within minutes of the polls closing in New Jersey Tuesday night.

As of the writing of this post, all but 4 straggling delegates from New Jersey out of the 694 delegates up for grabs last night seem to be reasonably determined, so lets run down then numbers.

After Puerto Rico, Clinton only needed 5.05% of the remaining delegates to win. Sanders needed 95.19% of the remaining delegates. Clinton needed 43 delegates, Sanders needed 811.

In CA/NJ/NM/MT/SD/ND Clinton got 391 delegates while Sanders got 299. (As mentioned, there are still 4 TBD from NJ as of this writing.)

In the days between Puerto Rico and the June 7th results coming in, superdelegate changes yielded a net change of: Clinton +14, Sanders +1, O’Malley -1. Yes, that lone O’Malley superdelegate finally flipped… to Clinton.

Total change since Puerto Rico: Clinton +405, Sanders +300, O’Malley -1

That is Clinton 57.53%, Sanders 42.61%. (Adds to more than 100% because Clinton took the one delegate from O’Malley.)

So Clinton met her target, Sanders did not.

405 delegates is significantly more than the 43 delegates Clinton needed to go over the top.

She clinches. She is the presumptive nominee.

Lets check out the updated graphs:


New delegate totals: Clinton 2745, Sanders 1872. Clinton blows past 2383 and is now well beyond where she needed to get.

There are 148 delegates left. Washington DC has 20 up for grabs next week. There are those 4 from New Jersey too. The other 124 are superdelegates who have not yet stated a preference. Clinton needs none of these delegates. Sanders could get every single one of these delegates, and would still lose decisively.


The “% of delegates needed to win” chart is complete. Clinton dropped below 0%, Sanders went above 100%.

One more graph:


Since she started at 100% of the delegates by getting superdelegates before the first primaries or caucuses even happened, Clinton’s “% of delegates” number of course trended downward through most of the cycle. But for quite some time now the delegate race has stuck pretty close to being a 60% to 40% split in Clinton’s favor. As of now, it sits at Clinton 59.45%, Sanders 40.55%.

OK, now to step back a little…

Clinton dominated this race from the beginning. There were only a handful of moments where Sanders even managed to close the gap a little bit. Sanders was never even close. It was clear since the beginning of March… at the latest… that is being generous… it was fairly clear even before that… that Sanders catching up would take a miracle. The one thing that has been amazing throughout the primary process is the ability of many Sanders supporters to be in complete denial about this in the face of overwhelming evidence. It is one thing to be enthusiastic about your candidate and even to hope for that miracle, but it is another thing to not even recognize that you are losing and that it would indeed take that miracle to win.

And yes, some of those Sanders folks are still in denial even now. Because superdelegates. So a quick look. Right now we have Clinton 2745, Sanders 1872. There are 124 remaining superdelegates. Lets give them all to Sanders. For fun give Sanders all 20 DC delegates and the 4 from New Jersey too. Now we have Clinton 2745, Sanders 2020. All delegates are now allocated. Sanders is still short. To get to 2382 he would need at least 182 delegates who have committed to Clinton to change their minds and vote for Sanders instead. Clinton has 532 superdelegates by the latest count. So that means 34.2% of the superdelegates currently committed to Clinton would have to flip.

They would have to do that flip in the face of Clinton having won the popular vote (even if you include estimated popular vote for caucus states), Clinton having won the pledged delegate count, and Clinton having won the most states. Not to mention significant numbers of the superdelegates not simply being lukewarm Clinton supporters, but being people who she has actively cultivated for many years, a good number of which have actually been active in her campaign.

Is it mathematically possible? Yes. Of course it is. Is it going to happen absent something catastrophic happening to Clinton? No.

Some Sanders folks are still holding out the “What if Clinton is indicted?” scenario. My guess is most superdelegates would consider it an unfair and unjust indictment and stick by their candidate. It probably wouldn’t be enough. Perhaps I suppose. It is a stretch though. More realistically it would take a debilitating health issue or some brand new scandal so serious it dwarfs everything that has come up so far. Can you imagine these sorts of things? Of course. But they are all unforeseen unpredictable types of event, not things you decide to continue a campaign based on. After all, there are ways Martin O’Malley can still win the nomination too!

You can conjure similar scenarios on the other side too of course, but absent that kind of craziness, we now have our nominees in both parties.

So we have Clinton vs Trump. Time to start focusing on the general election analysis!

153.4 days until polls start to close on election day!

Update 2016-06-12 17:16 UTC – Superdelegate update. Net Change: Clinton +11

Update 2016-06-12 17:43 UTC – Missed one change in the superdelegate update above. Additional Change: Clinton -1. (So Clinton +10 for this day’s scan.)

Update 2016-06-12 18:02 UTC – Updates from California, New Jersey, and South Dakota (including the remaining 4 TBD delegates from New Jersey). Net change: Sanders +4.

Update 2016-06-15 01:40 UTC – Superdelegate update. Net Change: Clinton -3, Sanders +1.

Note: This post is an update based on the data on Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added. If you find the information in these posts interesting or useful, please consider visiting the tip jar.

Edit 15:19 UTC to mention the 4 delegates from New Jersey in the list of remaining delegates and the calculations for superdelegates flipping.

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