Super Tuesday 2024: What is the relevance of North Carolina primary? - Hindustan Times
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Super Tuesday 2024: What is the relevance of North Carolina primary, and why is it important?

Mar 05, 2024 02:20 PM IST

Super Tuesday showdown in North Carolina! As voters cast their ballots in a high-stakes primary in a spicy Republican race and a quest for Democratic unity.

On Super Tuesday, millions of voters in 17 states and territories will have their say in who should be the presidential nominees for both parties.

Attendees wait in line ahead of a "Get Out The Vote" rally with former US President Donald Trump in Greensboro, North Carolina, US, on Saturday, March 2, 2024. Trump�said he will impose tit-for-tat tariffs if he is reelected president, reiterating one of his isolationist policy goals that has already raised concern�at home�and overseas.� Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg(Bloomberg)
Attendees wait in line ahead of a "Get Out The Vote" rally with former US President Donald Trump in Greensboro, North Carolina, US, on Saturday, March 2, 2024. Trump�said he will impose tit-for-tat tariffs if he is reelected president, reiterating one of his isolationist policy goals that has already raised concern�at home�and overseas.� Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg(Bloomberg)

One of the most important states to watch is North Carolina, where early voting is already underway.

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North Carolina has a lot of influence in the presidential race, with 110 delegates for the Democrats and 71 for the Republicans up for grabs. It also boast many other competitive races for statewide and congressional offices, some of which may require a runoff if no one gets more than 30% of the vote.

Republican side is more spicy than Democratic

On the Democratic side, the presidential primary is not very exciting, as current US President Joe Biden is the only name on the ballot. But “uncommitted” voters can still show their discontent with his administration by choosing “No preference” as an option.

In 2020, Biden won the state by a wide margin, but he may face some pushback from voters who backed U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders or other candidates before. Biden needs a jackpot performance in North Carolina to keep his lead and secure his nomination by March 19 (as he will not be able to secure this by March 5).

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But the Republican side is topped with mustard sauce, as former President Donald Trump will face former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley (who secured Washington DC), who is trying to stop him from getting a second term.

Trump is clearly the favourite, as he has the support of Lt. Gov. Mark Robinson, who is also running for governor.

The former president won the state by a narrow margin in 2016, but he may face some opposition from independent voters who are displeased with his involvement in the Jan. 6 Capitol Riot.

An anonymous voter attempted to remove Trump from the ballot, but the elections board dismissed the case. Trump will probably secure his nomination by March 12, unless Haley can pull off a stunning upset.

The governor’s race is also a heated contest

Current Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper, cannot run again due to term limits. On the Democratic side, State Attorney General Josh Stein is the frontrunner, with Cooper’s endorsement. He faces former state Supreme Court Justice Mike Morgan and three other challengers.

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On the Republican side, with Trump's endorsement, Robinson is the top candidate. He faces state Treasurer Dale Folwell and attorney Bill Graham, who have more experience in state government.

Other races to keep an eye on include the primaries for lieutenant governor, attorney general, treasurer, secretary of state and U.S. House, as well as the state Senate and state House.

The polls will close at 7:30 p.m. ET on Super Tuesday, but the results may take some time to come out, as a new law forbids counting early votes until after the polls close.

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