It’s been a long time since the outcome of the New York presidential primary has proven so critical. In more recent presidential races, the nomination contests were long over by the time the Empire State got its chance to have its say.
Now New York finds itself under the same political limelight cast across Iowa and New Hampshire in February, then Ohio and Florida in March. Your votes count in every election, of course, but this particular election has tremendous — or, as some might say, “YUGE” — significance on both the Democratic and Republican sides.
Before you head out to the polls on April 19, here’s what you need to know about the New York primary:
- All polls are open on April 19 from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.
- Only voters who are registered with the Democratic or Republican parties may vote in their party’s nomination. Democrats cannot vote in the Republican primary; Republicans cannot vote in the Democratic primary; registered independent or third-party voters cannot vote in either primary.
- Democrats will choose between former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. There are 217 delegates at stake, which will be awarded proportionally based on the outcome of the vote. Voters in each congressional district will vote for slates of delegates pledged for either Clinton or Sanders.
- There are also 74 non-elected Democratic superdelegates made up of party leaders who support the candidate of their choice. The results of the primary have no direct bearing on the number or status of superdelegates in New York State.
The Democratic nominee needs 2,383 total delegates to win the nomination outright. As of April 13, according to The New York Times, Clinton has 1,774 delegates, while Sanders has 1,117 delegates. This includes the superdelegate total (Clinton has 469, Sanders has 31). Superdelegates can switch candidates if the candidate they support loses the lead among pledged, elected delegates.
Who will you vote for?
- Republicans will choose between their party’s three remaining active candidates: billionaire celebrity Donald Trump, Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Ohio Governor John Kasich. Neurosurgeon and author Ben Carson, who suspended his campaign weeks ago, remains on the ballot.
- There are 95 total Republican delegates at stake in New York, and the primary winner will receive most of the delegates. Republican voters will vote for the candidate, not the delegates supporting the candidate. The runners-up will receive some delegates provided they receive at least 15 percent of the vote. Republicans do not have superdelegates.
The Republican nominee needs 1,237 total delegates to win the nomination outright. As of April 13, according to The New York Times, Trump has 742 delegates; Cruz has 529 delegates; and Kasich has 143 delegates. Florida Senator Marco Rubio, who suspended his campaign in March, has 171 delegates.
Who will you vote for?