US Super Tuesday primaries live

Trump set to grab a huge majority of the 865 Republican delegates on offer today. Also: the right is likely to win the Portuguese election this Sunday.

11:31am Friday With 98% of Super Tuesday delegates allocated in the NYT count, Trump leads Haley by 1,062 delegates to 91. The only consolation for Haley is that her vote share has risen to 50.2% in Vermont. If that holds, she will win all 17 Vermont delegates, not just the 9 from a proportional split.

7:34am Thursday summary Haley has withdrawn. It’s been obvious for a long time, but Trump will be the Republican nominee. Dean Phillips also withdrew from the Democratic contest, so it’s virtually official: a Trump vs Biden rematch.

Trump won the Utah caucus by 57-42 last night. This was easily his worst state in 2016, but the Mormons in Utah clearly like him better now. The NYT delegate count gives Trump 1,004 delegates to 89 for Haley, with 1,215 needed to win. Trump will reach that target by March 19. Other than Vermont (Haley by four), Trump’s margins ranged from 15 points in Utah to 76 in Alaska. He now leads the Republican national popular vote count on The Green Papers by 71.7-24.7 (this includes all states that have held primaries or caucuses so far).

This will be my final live blog on the US primaries, and probably my last post here for a while.

Live Commentary

6:28pm Trump has crushed Haley in Alaska by 87.6-12.0. Alaska had proportional rep for delegates, but a 13% threshold was needed. With Haley below 13%, Trump will take all 29 delegates.

4:49pm I don’t know why Utah, where polls closed at 2pm AEDT, still has under 1% counted. The Green Papers now has Trump up to 936 delegates, with Haley on 83.

4:05pm On the Green Papers’ delegate tracker, Trump now leads with 829 to 68 for Haley. and he’s well on track for the 1,215 needed to win. Today’s primaries have also enhanced his popular vote position; he now leads Haley by 71-25 on overall popular votes in the primaries so far.

3:20pm Trump has been CALLED the winner in California, and will take all 169 delegates from that state. In the Senate “jungle primary”, where all candidates from different parties compete on the same ballot and the top two go through to the general election regardless of party, Dem Schiff and Rep Garvey are very likely to qualify.

2:43pm Vermont has been CALLED for Haley, and she currently leads Trump by 49.7-46.0 with 92% in. Can she get over the 50%+ needed to win all 17 delegates?

2:16pm With 90% counted in Vermont, Haley leads Trump by 49.5-46.2, and should win. But due to votes for dropped out candidates, she may not get the 50%+ required to win all of Vermont’s 17 delegates. If she doesn’t, they’ll be proportionally allocated.

1:58pm And now Trump is up to 645 pledged delegates in Green Papers’ count.

1:41pm Green Papers now has Trump up to 558 “soft pledged” delegates, while Haley is still on 43.

1:35pm Minnesota and Colorado, where polls closed at 1pm AEDT, have both been called for Trump, and he’ll easily win both. Haley is still ahead on the NYT projection for Vermont by 2.7% with 52% in.

1:30pm Biden is also romping to huge victories in the Dem primaries.

1:21pm The NYT has been slow to call delegates. The Green Papers has Trump up to 325 delegates, while Haley is still on 43. I have made great use of this site in these articles as they give all the delegate rules.

1:04pm With all polls now closed in Texas, that’s been CALLED for Trump, with the NYT needle pointing to a final result of Trump by 53. Trump will win all 47 Texan statewide delegates and probably at least 90 district delegates (three delegates per district won).

12:26pm The NYT needle is at Haley by 2.3 in Vermont with 28% in. Everything else looks like a Trump blowout.

12:11pm North Carolina has been CALLED for Trump as he leads by 51 points with 9% in. NC is a closed primary available to only registered Reps. The NYT needle has Trump by 52 there. Tennessee has also been called for Trump.

11:54am Trump back ahead in Vermont in both the live count and the NYT projection with 11% in. This is a heavily Dem state at general elections that had an “open” primary, as there’s no registration by party in Vermont.

11:41am Haley is now ahead in Vermont with 7% in, and the NYT needle gives her a 1.6-point forecast lead.

11:35am Hete’s the main NYT page to follow all the results as they come in. There are also congressional primary races in many states voting today. In Vermont, the needle only has Trump winning by 1.6 points.

11:30am With 10% counted in Virginia, it’s been CALLED for Trump, as he leads Haley by 64-34. The NYT needle is at Trump by 31.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

Polls close between 11am and 4pm AEDT today for Republican presidential contests in 15 states that will allocate a total of 865 delegates. These include the two most populous states of California and Texas. The large majority of polls in Texas close at 12pm AEDT, but the area around El Paso closes an hour later. Polls close in California at 3pm AEDT.

All of California’s 169 delegates go to the winner if a vote majority is reached (which is almost certain as there are only two candidates remaining). In Texas, the 47 statewide delegates go to the state’s winner, and the 114 district delegates (three for each of Texas’ 38 Congressional Districts) go to the district’s winner. Many other states voting today also have a majority vote wins all delegates rule by statewide or district.

Donald Trump leads Nikki Haley by massive margins in Californian and Texan polls. In the FiveThirtyEight aggregates, he leads by 73.4-18.6 in California, and by 78.4-14.4 in Texas. California has a “closed” primary where only registered Republicans can vote in the Republican primary. In national polls, Trump leads by 77,3-15.2, while Joe Biden leads Dean Phillips in national Democratic primary polls by 75.9-8.2.

In contests held over the last few days, Trump won all 54 delegates available in Missouri, all 39 at the Michigan state convention (these were awarded separately to the 16 that were on offer at the February 27 Michigan primary), all 32 in Idaho, and all 29 in North Dakota. But Haley won all 19 delegates in Washington DC, which gives Democrats over 85% at general elections. Trump now leads Haley on the Republican delegate count by 273-43, with 1,215 needed to win the nomination.

No popular votes were recorded in Missouri, but Trump won all 924 delegates to the state convention at Saturday’s caucuses. In Michigan, Trump won by 98-2 at the state convention after winning the primary 68-27. In Idaho, he won by 85-13, and in North Dakota by 85-14, while Haley won DC by 63-33. These were majority winner takes all contests, except in ND where 60% was required for WTA.

Most national general election polls give Trump a lead over Biden, by roughly a low single-digit margin, and Trump is likely further advantaged by the Electoral College system. In FiveThirtyEight averages, Trump’s net favourability is -8.8, while Biden’s net approval is -18.0. Trump’s ratings have improved recently, while Biden’s haven’t changed much. In a legal victory for Trump, the Supreme Court on Monday unanimously overturned a Colorado court’s decision, so Trump will be on the ballot paper in all states in November.

Right likely to take control of Portugal at Sunday’s election

In January 2022 elections, the centre-left Socialists won an outright majority in Portugal’s legislature. But they had a series of major scandals that led to the resignation of the PM. In November 2023, the Portuguese president sacked the government and called elections for this Sunday, about two years early. The president, who is popularly elected for a five-year term, has more power in Portugal than in most other parliamentary democracies.

The 230 MPs are elected by proportional representation in multi-member electorates. This system gives bigger parties more seats than national PR. Most polls show the conservative Democratic Alliance (AD) leading the Socialists with about 17% for the far-right Chega. An alliance between AD and Chega will easily have enough seats for a majority, with the only question whether they will form such an alliance after the election. The Socialists have held government since shortly after the October 2015 election.

UK Rochdale by-election live

Labour’s candidate malfunction makes this by-election interesting, with George Galloway a possible winner.

Live Commentary

1:53pm Finally a result, with Galloway winning easily and Tully second. The Tories were down 22 points to 12% and Labour crashed 48 points to just 8%! The Labour candidate was disendorsed.

1:17pm Re last update, it’s been a very slow 20 minutes!

12:47pm The BBC reported at 12:40pm that the result will be earlier than expected, in another 10 to 20 minutes.

11:53am Galloway’s campaign are confident they’ve won, and an independent (David Tully) is doing very well, and could come second.

11:37am The BBC reported at 10:37am AEDT that Galloway’s people think he’s won.

11:32am BBC’s live blog says the Rochdale result is expected about 2pm AEDT. Counting in the UK doesn’t happen by booth as in Australia. Instead all votes cast in a seat are taken to one place for the count.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

Polls close at 9am AEDT today for a by-election in the UK Labour-held seat of Rochdale that was caused by the death of the previous MP, Tony Lloyd. Labour defeated the Conservatives by 51.6-31.2 in Rochdale in 2019, with 8.2% Brexit Party and 7.0% Lib Dem. With Labour far ahead in national polls, a by-election in a safe Labour-held seat would normally be uninteresting.

But Labour’s candidate, Ashar Ali, was disendorsed by Labour on February 12, owing to revelations of comments he made implying that Israel knew of the October 7 Hamas attacks, but deliberately did nothing to stop them. But as nominations had already closed, Ali is still listed as the Labour candidate on the ballot paper. If he wins, he will sit as an independent.

Muslims make up 30% of Rochdale’s population and George Galloway, who has attacked Labour from the left for a long time, is running as the Workers Party candidate, on a campaign focused on support for Palestine. Galloway is probably the biggest threat to Ali.

Labour has been criticized from the left for its position on the Israel-Palestine conflict, and there was uproar in parliament last week when the Speaker allowed a Labour amendment instead of one proposed by the Scottish National Party. If the SNP amendment had been voted on, many Labour MPs would have rebelled against their party’s opposition.

The Labour MP for Rochdale before Lloyd was Simon Danczuk, but he was expelled from the party in 2015 after revelations of explicit messages with a 17-year-old girl. Danczuk ran as an independent in 2017 but finished fifth with just 1.8%. At this by-election, he is running as the far-right Reform’s candidate.

Former Conservative MP Scott Benton was suspended from parliament for 35 days on Tuesday. As the suspension is greater than ten days, it triggers a recall petition in Benton’s seat of Blackpool South. The petition will be open for six weeks, and if at least 10% of voters in Blackpool South sign, there will be a by-election. The Conservatives gained Blackpool South from Labour at the 2019 election, winning by a 49.6-38.3 margin with 6.1% for the Brexit Party.

Trump and Biden dominate in Michigan

At Tuesday’s US Republican Michigan primary, Donald Trump defeated Nikki Haley by 68.1-26.6. Only 16 of Michigan’s 55 delegates were allocated, with a further 39 to be assigned in Saturday’s state convention. Idaho, Washington DC and North Dakota also hold Republican contests before Super Tuesday next week (Wednesday AEDT). Trump leads Haley by 122 delegates to 24, with 1,215 needed to win the nomination.

Joe Biden won the Democratic Michigan primary with 81.1%. Owing to opposition to Biden’s position on the Israel-Palestine conflict, some on the left had urged voters to vote “uncommitted”, but uncommitted only won 13.2%.

US South Carolina Republican primary live

Trump set to effectively seal the Republican nomination contest by crushing Haley in her home state.

Live Commentary

8:47am Monday Haley won one of SC’s seven districts, so she avoided a delegate wipeout. But it’s still a 47-3 delegate split in Trump’s favour. I will cover the UK Rochdale by-election on Friday AEDT.

5:20pm With almost all votes counted, Trump wins by 59.8-39.5, a 20.3-point margin. There were almost 756,000 Rep primary votes, compared with just over 131,000 for the SC Dem primary. Trump has won 44 of the 50 delegates, with results for two Cong Districts uncalled. These will need results by CD before they can be called.

1:23pm With 75% in, Trump leads by 59.7-39.6, and the NYT needle is forecasting a final margin of Trump by 19. This was a thumping victory for Trump in his only remaining opponent’s home state. He leads by 61 points in national Rep polls, and has massive leads in California and Texas, which vote on Super Tuesday March 5. If Haley stays in until ST, she’s likely to be buried.

12:13pm With 34% in, Trump leads by 59-40. The NYT needle is now at Trump by 20.

11:58am There were just over 131,000 total votes in the Feb 3 South Carolina Dem primary that Biden won with 96%. With 21% counted in today’s Rep primary, there are already over 158,000 votes.

11:51am With 13% in, Trump leads by 58-42. The NYT needle has returned to Trump by 23 after briefly having him winning by 26.

11:40am Votes counted so far are early votes according to NYT analyst Nate Cohn. Election day vote likely to be more pro-Trump.

11:32am Trump now up by only 53-46 as Charleston reports, but the NYT estimate is for a final margin of Trump by 23.

11:29am Columbia has just reported, reducing Trump’s statewide lead to 55-44 with 3% in.

11:07am Trump has been credited with 44 of SC’s 50 delegates, presumably winning the state and five of the seven districts by large margins.

11:05am South Carolina has been CALLED for Trump based on exit polls before any votes have been counted. Here’s the NYT results page.

7:44am It looks like late gains for Haley in SC, with the final Trafalgar group poll, conducted Wednesday to Friday US time, giving Trump a 21-point lead, down from 30 points in the previous Trafalgar poll in mid-February. But it’s still likely to be a big win for Trump. And there’s no sign of any gains for Haley in national polls.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

Polls close at 11am AEDT today for the South Carolina Republican presidential primary.  This is Nikki Haley’s home state, and she was governor from 2011 to 2017.  But Donald Trump leads Haley by 63.6-32.9 in the FiveThirtyEight aggregate of SC Republican polls.  The last polls were taken a week ago, and two of the last four polls had Trump’s lead in the low 20s.

In national Republican polls, Trump leads Haley by 77-16, while in national Democratic polls, Joe Biden leads Dean Phillips by 75-7.  Most national general election polls show Trump leading Biden by low single-digit margins, and Trump is likely further advantaged by the Electoral College system.

South Carolina is the first state to use a winner takes all/most formula to allocate its Republican delegates.  The 29 statewide delegates go to the statewide winner, and the 21 district delegates (three for each of SC’s seven Congressional Districts) are allocated to the winner of each district. With Trump’s large lead, he is likely to take a clean sweep of all 50 delegates.

On Super Tuesday March 5, 15 states hold Republican contests including the two most populous states of California and Texas.  All of California’s 169 delegates go to the winner if a vote majority is reached (which is almost certain as there are only two candidates remaining).  In Texas, the 48 statewide delegates go to the state’s winner, and the 114 district delegates (three for each of Texas’ 38 districts) go to the district’s winner.

Trump has massive leads in FiveThirtyEight polling averages of both California and Texas.  He leads Haley by 83-13 in Texas and by 73-19 in California.  California is a strongly Democratic state at general elections, but only registered Republicans can vote in the Republican primary.

Less than 4% of Republican delegates have currently been allocated, but after Super Tuesday that will increase to 47%.  For Democrats, 42% of delegates will be allocated by Super Tuesday.  By March 19, 69% of Republican delegates and 64% of Democratic delegates will be allocated, and Biden and Trump will almost certainly have clinched their parties’ nominations.

US House special election and Indonesian election live

Can US Democrats gain George Santos’ former seat at a special election? Also: the right-wing Prabowa likely to win Indonesia’s presidential election.

Live Commentary

11:17am Thursday Wikipedia says quick counts gave Prabowa between 53.4% and 59.8%. In the official count, with 39% reporting, Prabowa has 56.0%. The legislative count is far less advanced than the presidential count.

7:44pm Al Jazeera reports that quick counts from all polls have Prabowa leading with 58% to 61% with 26% to 35% of votes counted. So Prabowa will be the next Indonesian president, winning a first round majority.

6:13pm From Al Jazeera, election law prevents publication of “quick counts” before 8am GMT (7pm AEDT). So we should get some quick count results, which have been accurate in the past, after that time.

5:31pm This is the Al Jazeera live results blog.

5:10pm All polls have now closed in Indonesia. Al Jazeera has a live blog, but no results so far. Preliminary results are expected to be released this evening.

4:11pm With 93% in, Suozzi’s margin drops slightly to 53.9-46.1. Biden won this district by 8.2% in 2020, so there’s virtually no swing from the Biden 2020 margin. The big swing is from Santos’ 53.8-46.2 win in 2022.

3:50pm Recycling this paragraph from the Intro for those getting carried away by the special election results: Democrats have been successful at state and federal by-elections (called “special” elections in the US) since the Supreme Court’s abortion ruling, overturning Roe vs Wade in June 2022. But New York Times analyst Nate Cohn says turnout at these by-elections is much lower than it will be at the general election this November. Voters who show up at by-elections are far more motivated by abortion than the general electorate.

2:57pm With 84% in overall, Suozzi leads by 54.2-45.8. 83% now counted in Nassau, and Suozzi is down to a 53-47 lead there. These latest results make the polls look more accurate.

2:35pm More results from Nassau (70% counted there now) reduce Suozzi’s overall lead to 55-45.

2:28pm It will actually be a 219-213 Rep House majority owing to a Dem’s resignation on Feb 2. There are special elections to come between late April and June to replace the two Reps and the Dem who have resigned.

2:07pm Race CALLED for Suozzi, and that’s a Dem gain, reducing the Rep House majority to 219-214. Should have put link to results in earlier.

2:04pm 45% of Nassau now in, and Suozzi leads there by 58-42 and overall by 59-41. Looks very good for Suozzi.

1:31pm Suozzi leads by 63-37 in Queens with 86% in and 51-49 in Nassau with 2% in. The large majority of this district is in Nassau, but counting is slow there.

1:16pm With 9% in, Suozzi (Dem) leads Pilip (Rep) by 63-37. However, the NYC borough of Queens has 60% counted already, with Suozzi up there by 63-37. There are few votes so far in the regional county of Nassau.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

Polls close at 1pm AEDT today for a US federal by-election in New York’s third congressional district. I wrote in January that this seat was formerly held by Republican George Santos before he was expelled from the House of Representatives on December 1.

Santos had gained from the Democrats at the 2022 midterm elections, winning by a 53.8-46.2 margin. Joe Biden had won this seat against Donald Trump at the 2020 presidential election by an 8.2% margin.

The by-election candidates are Democrat Tom Suozzi and Republican Mazi Melesa Pilip. A mid-January Emerson College poll gave Suozzi a 45-42 lead over Pilip. Two early February polls from Emerson and Siena gave Suozzi three-to-four-point leads.

Republicans won the House in 2022 by a 222-213 margin, but there are currently three vacancies in Republican-held seats including this one. A Democratic win in this by-election would reduce the Republican House majority to 219-214.

Democrats have been successful at state and federal by-elections (called “special” elections in the US) since the Supreme Court’s abortion ruling, overturning Roe vs Wade in June 2022. But New York Times analyst Nate Cohn says turnout at these by-elections is much lower than it will be at the general election this November. Voters who show up at by-elections are far more motivated by abortion than the general electorate.

On February 8, Biden gave a press conference in response to a special counsel’s report on classified documents that had been found at his home. The line in the report that was most damaging to Biden described him as a “well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory”.

Most national polls have Trump leading Biden by single-digit margins for the general election. The US Electoral Vote system is likely to advantage Trump over national polls. Biden’s net approval in the FiveThirtyEight aggregate is -16.9, while Trump’s net favourability is -9.3.

Polls will close at 9am AEDT Friday for by-elections in two UK Conservative-held seats. I will have more on these by-elections in a separate post, and also more on recent international elections.

Updates on the presidential primaries

Republican presidential candidates in Nevada had to choose to contest either the February 6 primary or the February 8 caucus, which allocated all of Nevada’s delegates. Trump contested the caucus, while Nikki Haley contested the primary.

Nevada has a “none of these candidates” option on its ballot papers. In the primary, “none of these candidates” crushed Haley by 63–30. Trump won 99% in the Nevada caucus, where he was effectively unopposed. Trump leads Haley nationally by 76-18 in the FiveThirtyEight aggregate and by 65-32 in Haley’s home state of South Carolina, which holds its Republican primary February 24.

Biden won the February 3 South Carolina Democratic primary with 96% and the February 6 Nevada Democratic primary with 89%, and will easily win the Democratic presidential nomination.

Prabowo likely to win Indonesian election

I covered the presidential and legislative elections in Indonesia in January. If no presidential candidate wins a majority, there will be a June 26 runoff. The 580 lower house seats are elected by proportional representation in multi-member electorates with a 4% national threshold. Senatorial candidates cannot be members of a political party. Four senators are elected per province for a total of 152.

Indonesia spans three time zones, with polls closing between 3pm and 5pm AEDT today. This Al Jazeera article says a preliminary result is likely to be announced this evening, but the final results could take 35 days.

The latest polls all give Prabowa Subianto over 50%, so it’s likely that he wins outright today. Prabowa is the candidate of a religious and right-wing alliance who lost to incumbent president Joko Widodo in both the 2014 and 2019 elections. Gibran Rakabuming, the eldest child of Joko, is Prabowo’s running mate. The other two candidates are Ganjar Pranowo, who represents the secularist PDI-P (Joko’s party) and independent Anies Baswedan, the former governor of Jakarta.

US New Hampshire primary live

Donald Trump likely to easily defeat Nikki Haley in New Hampshire. Also covered: the February 14 Indonesian election.

Live Commentary

2:35pm Friday Biden finished with 63.9% in the Dem primary, with Phillips at 19.6% and “other write-ins” at 8.3%.

11:36am Thursday With almost all votes counted, Trump wins by 54.3-43.3, in line with the 11-point forecast from the NYT model. Turnout for the Republican primary was a New Hampshire record at 322,000, and compares with just 118,000 in the Democratic primary. In the Dem primary, Biden is on 55.8% and will reach about 65% once the remaining 10.1% of “unprocessed write-ins” are counted. Phillips was a distant second with 19.5%.

4:54pm I had an article about the New Hampshire results for The Conversation that also featured general election polls.

4:47pm Biden will easily win the Dem Feb 3 South Carolina primary and Feb 6 Nevada primary. I won’t cover the early Feb contests, but will be back for the Feb 13 US federal by-election in New York’s third, the Feb 14 Indonesian election and two Feb 15 UK by-elections in Conservative-held seats.

4:41pm The next Republican contest is Nevada, which holds a non-binding primary Feb 6 and a caucus Feb 8 that binds its 26 delegates. Candidates had to choose to nominate for either the caucus or primary. Haley is on the primary ballot, and Trump on the caucus ballot. Trump will win the delegates, but can Haley do OK in the primary? After that it’s South Carolina on Feb 24.

4:35pm With 87% counted, Trump leads by 54.5-43.6. According to exit polls, Trump won registered Republicans 74-25 (50% of electorate), but Haley won undeclared by 66-34 (46% of electorate). This huge vote for Haley from non-Republicans isn’t likely to apply in other states. It probably explains why polls overstated Trump’s NH margin.

2:50pm With 71% counted, Trump leads by 54.6-43.8, but the NYT forecast is still at Trump by 11.

2:14pm With 58% counted, Trump leads by 53.6-45.0. The NYT forecast is still Trump by 11.

1:16pm With 36% counted, Trump leads by 53.4-45.6. The NYT forecast is for a final result of Trump by 11.

12:30pm With 24% counted, Trump leads by 52.5-46.6. The NY Times forecast has a final 11-point margin predicted.

12:05pm With all NH polls now closed, Trump is the projected winner. The NY Times live forecast gives Trump a win by an estimated 12 point margin.

11:51am With 17% in, Trump’s lead is near double digits at 54.4-44.7.

11:31am With 10% in, Trump leads by 53-46. Dave Wasserman has called for Trump.

11:22am Trump now has a 51-48 lead over Haley in the Rep primary with 5% in.

11:20am In the Dem primary, “write-ins” (which will nearly all be for Biden) lead Dean Phillips by 73-24.

11:15am With 2% reporting, Haley leads Trump by 51-48.

8:54am Two late NH polls give Trump a 20-point and 22-point lead over Haley, causing the FiveThirtyEight aggregate to stretch to a 54-36 lead for Trump.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

The large majority of polls in New Hampshire close at 11am AEDT today. Polls in the 13 cities stay open until 12pm, and this will be the earliest time for a race call. The 22 NH Republican delegates are allocated proportionally with a 10% threshold. Information on US poll closing times and delegate allocation is from The Green Papers.

On Sunday US time, Ron DeSantis withdrew from the presidential race and endorsed Donald Trump, leaving Nikki Haley as Trump’s sole challenger for the Republican nomination. DeSantis had been viewed as Trump’s main threat, but he had fallen from 34% in the FiveThirtyEight aggregate of national Republican polls in January 2023 to 11% when he withdrew, as Trump increased from 45% to 66%. Trump beat DeSantis in Iowa last week by almost 30 points.

Haley has only 12% in national Republican polls. Since Trump’s big win in Iowa, he has received many endorsements from prominent Republicans, and has a massive lead in endorsements according to FiveThirtyEight’s tracker.

In NH polls, Trump has surged since Iowa, and leads Haley by 52.3-36.7 in FiveThirtyEight. One poll gave Trump just a two-point lead, but the three most recent polls, which account for DeSantis’ exit, gave Trump 19-to-27-point leads.

The February 24 Republican primary in Haley’s home state of South Carolina is probably the last chance to stop Trump winning the Republican nomination, but Trump has a massive 61-25 lead over Haley in SC polls. SC is the first state to use a winner takes all/most formula for its Republican delegates. The 29 statewide delegates are awarded WTA, and the 21 congressional district delegates (three per district) are WTA by district.

For the Democratic primary, NH was reduced from 32 to ten Democratic delegates for holding its primary earlier than Democrats wanted. Owing to this rule breach, candidates were told to ignore NH, and Joe Biden is not on the ballot paper. However, Biden is using a “write-in” campaign, where voters write in someone’s name.

The first proper Democratic contest is the South Carolina primary on February 3, followed by the Nevada primary on February 6. Republican Nevada delegates will be allocated by a February 8 caucus, not a primary. Candidates could choose to be listed on either the primary or the caucus ballot. Trump is expected to have a huge win in the caucus.

In national Democratic primary polls, Biden has 72%, Marianne Williamson 5% and Dean Phillips 3%. Democratic delegates are allocated proportionally with a 15% threshold. Neither the Republican nor Democratic nominations are at all competitive.

On Super Tuesday March 5, many states will vote, and 41.6% of Democratic delegates and 47.4% of Republican delegates will be decided by this date. Trump and Biden are likely to effectively seal their parties’ nominations.

Indonesian election: February 14

Presidential and legislative elections will be held in Indonesia on February 14. Indonesia is in Australia’s region, and there are over 200 million registered voters. If no presidential candidate wins a majority, there will be a June 26 runoff. The 580 lower house seats are elected by proportional representation in multi-member electorates with a 4% national threshold. Senatorial candidates cannot be members of a political party. Four senators are elected per province for a total of 152.

Incumbent president Joko Widodo of the secularist and socially liberal Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) has served two five-year terms since his election in 2014. In the presidential election, Prabowo Subianto is the candidate of a religious and right-wing alliance, while Ganjar Pranowo represents the PDI-P and the third candidate is independent Anies Baswedan, the former governor of Jakarta.  

The polls imply Prabowo is the clear favourite, with most recent polls giving him 45-50% and two of the four most recent giving him over 50%, enough to win without a runoff. Gibran Rakabuming, the eldest child of Widodo, is Prabowo’s running mate.

US Iowa Republican presidential caucus live

Live coverage of today’s Iowa caucus that Trump is expected to win easily. Also: a roundup of recent international electoral developments.

Live Commentary

4:10pm Ramaswamy has dropped out, so Trump, DeSantis and Haley are the final three standing with real support.

4:03pm Nearly final results are Trump 51.0%, DeSantis 21.2%, Haley 19.1% and Ramaswamy 7.7%. A great result for Trump. I’ll have a post on the New Hampshire primary next week.

2:55pm With 91% in, it’s Trump 51.0%, DeSantis 21.3%, Haley 19.0% and Ramaswamy 7.7%. The NYT forecast now has DeSantis finishing second. So a HUGE Trump win and no momentum for Haley probably means he’s going to win New Hampshire next week.

2:12pm The NYT has precinct maps showing there’s a big gap in Trump’s support by education and income, with higher-education and income areas less supportive. It’s the reverse pattern for Haley.

2:03pm With 39% reporting, it’s 52.8% Trump, 20.0% DeSantis, 18.7% Haley and 7.7% for Vivek Ramaswamy. The NYT prediction is Trump 51%, DeSantis 20%, Haley 19% and Ramaswamy 8%. DeSantis has a 57% chance to finish second.

1:34pm The NY Times live forecast has Haley ahead of DeSantis by an estimated 20% to 18% for second when all votes are counted. They give Haley a 57% chance to finish second.

1:14pm With 3% counted, Trump leads with 53%, followed by DeSantis at 21.5% and Haley at 17.6%. As expected, Trump wins Iowa.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

The Iowa Republican caucuses start at 12pm AEDT today. There will probably be some discussion before votes are taken. These caucuses will allocate 40 delegates by statewide proportional representation. While Iowa and some other states allocate their Republican delegates proportionally, many other states use a winner takes all or winner takes most method, with South Carolina on February 24 the first such state.

A “caucus” is managed by the state party, and often requires voters to gather at a particular time. A “primary” is managed by the state’s electoral authority, and is administered in the same way as a general election. Turnout at primaries is much higher than at caucuses. In 2024, the large majority of contests use primaries. Turnout in Iowa could be affected by frigid weather.

These contests elect delegates who will formally select their party’s presidential candidate at conventions in July (for Republicans) and August (Democrats). With Donald Trump and Joe Biden way ahead in polls, a rematch of the 2020 election is very likely. Both Biden and Trump are likely to effectively seal their parties’ nominations on Super Tuesday March 5 when many states vote.

The New Hampshire primary for both parties is next Tuesday January 23, but it was stripped of all its Democratic delegates for voting earlier than allowed under the Democrats’ rules. The first contest to bind Democratic delegates will be South Carolina on February 3.

In FiveThirtyEight aggregates, Trump is way ahead in Iowa with 51.3% followed by Nikki Haley at 17.3% and Ron DeSantis at 16.1%. It’s closer in New Hampshire with Trump leading Haley by 41.4-30.0. In national Republican primary polls, Trump has 60.4%, DeSantis 12.1% and Haley 11.7%.

Democratic delegates are allocated proportionally, but with a 15% threshold. Only Biden is likely to clear this threshold in most contests. He has 69.8% in national Democratic polls, Marianne Williamson 6.1% and Dean Phillips 3.5%.

Poland, Serbia, Chile, Switzerland and Germany

Poland’s Law and Justice (PiS) party lost the October 15 election, but a new government was not sworn in until December 13 owing mainly to delays by the PiS-aligned president Andrzej Duda. The new governing coalition of liberal conservative Civic Platform, centrist Third Way and the Left won a confidence vote by 248-201. Duda can veto legislation and it takes a 60% majority to override his veto, which the non-PiS parties don’t have. The next presidential election is in 2025.

Snap parliamentary elections were held in Serbia on December 17. They were called early after authoritarian President Aleksandar Vučić’s SNS coalition did not win a majority in 2022 elections. The 250 parliamentarians were elected by national PR with a 3% threshold. The SNS won 129 seats (up nine), with an opposition coalition winning 65 seats (up 25). SNS won a majority.

On December 17, Chile rejected a right-wing constitution by a 55.8-44.2 margin. In September 2022, a left-wing constitution had been rejected by 61.9-38.1. The 1980 constitution that dictator Augusto Pinochet created continues to be in effect.

I previously covered the 2023 Swiss parliamentary elections. Rather than a single president or PM, Switzerland uses a seven-member federal council, which was elected by parliament on December 13. The composition was unchanged from 2019, with two from the right-wing SVP, two Social Democrats, two Liberals and one from the conservative Centre.

On December 19, Germany’s Constitutional Court ordered a February 11 rerun of the September 2021 German federal election in 455 of Berlin’s 2,256 polling booths. While a few seats are likely to change, the overall majority for the governing coalition of Social Democrats, Greens and pro-business Free Democrats is expected to be retained. But current national polls are bleak for the government, with the next election due by late 2025.

Taiwan presidential election live

Live commentary on today’s Taiwan presidential election. Also covered: US primary polls and upcoming US and UK by-elections.

Live Commentary

9:25am Sunday Final results: Lai defeated Hou by 40.1-33.5, a 6.6% margin, with 26.5% for Ko. However, the DPP lost its majority in the 113-member legislature, with the KMT winning 52 seats (up 14 since 2020), the DPP 51 (down ten), the TPP eight (up three) and others two (down seven). The DPP will need support from either the KMT or TPP to reach the 57 votes needed for a majority.

11:07pm With 95% reporting, Lai leads Hou by 40.3-33.4 with 26.3% for Ko. Although his lead has slipped with counting of final votes, Lai has still clearly won. A reminder that this election is by First Past the Post, so there’s no runoff.

10:24pm With 76% reporting, Lai leads Hou by 41.1-33.2 with 25.7% for Ko.

9:11pm With 16% reporting, Lai leads Hou by 43.1-33.6 with 23.4% for Ko. Looking very likely Lai will win a record third consecutive term for the DPP.

8:33pm With 3% reporting, Lai leads Hou by 43.2-35.6 with 21.2% for Ko.

7:30pm Bloomberg says the first results from Taiwan should be out after 8pm AEDT.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

Polls close at 7pm AEDT today for Taiwan’s presidential election, in which first past the post is used. There are three candidates: William Lai of the centre-left and pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Hou You-ih of the more pro-China and conservative Kuomintang (KMT) and Ko Wen-je of the populist Taiwan People’s Party (TPP).

The DPP holds the presidency, with incumbent Tsai Ing-wen elected for two terms since 2016, but she can’t run again owing to term limits. There had been speculation that the KMT and TPP would form a joint ticket before nominations closed on November 24, but this fell apart.

Publication of polls has not been permitted since January 3. The final polls released before this date showed Lai leading Hou by two to five points, with one poll giving Lai an 11-point lead. Ko’s support was in the low 20’s. If Lai wins, it would be the first time the same party has won the presidency for three consecutive terms. This election is likely to be the first since 2000 when the winner did not receive a vote majority.

Trump set for big win in Iowa caucus

The first US presidential nominating contest will be Monday’s Iowa Republican caucus (Tuesday AEDT). The FiveThirtyEight aggregate of Iowa polls shows Donald Trump way ahead with 51.3%, followed by Nikki Haley at 17.3% and Ron DeSantis at 16.1%. I will have a separate post on Iowa on Tuesday.

The New Hampshire primary follows Iowa on January 23. Trump is leading in NH with 41.4%, followed by Haley at 30.0% and DeSantis at 6.1%. There has been a surge for Haley since December. She should be helped by the withdrawal of anti-Trump candidate Chris Christie on Wednesday; Christie had 11.6% in NH polls.

In national Republican polls, Trump is far ahead with 60.4%, followed by DeSantis at 12.1% and Haley at 11.7%. On Super Tuesday March 5, many states will vote, and Trump and Joe Biden will probably be close to clinching their parties’ nominations after this date. No high-profile Democrat has challenged Biden for the Democratic nomination.

I covered the US presidential election for The Conversation on December 13. I said that while Trump was leading Biden, there were two main chances of a Biden recovery: an improvement in economic sentiment and a Trump conviction. But Biden will be almost 82 by the November election, while Trump will be 78.

Upcoming US and UK by-elections

Republican George Santos was expelled from the federal House on December 1 by a 311-114 vote (a two-thirds majority was required). Santos was facing 23 indictments when expelled. A by-election will be held on February 13 in Santos’ former seat (New York’s third). In 2022, Santos gained this seat from the Democrats by a 53.8-46.2 margin. According to Daily Kos elections, Biden won this seat in 2020 by an 8.2% margin. A late November poll gave the Democrat a three-point lead.

In most midterm elections, the non-presidential party has won easily. Democrats did well in 2022 to keep Republicans to a 222-213 federal House majority, a Republican gain of nine seats on 2020. But Democrats lost four seats in New York.

Republicans currently hold a 220-213 House majority after former Republican Speaker Kevin McCarthy resigned on December 31. McCarthy’s seat is safe Republican, so this by-election is unlikely to be competitive. A Democratic win in New York’s third would reduce the Republican majority to 220-214 until McCarthy’s seat is filled.

By-elections will occur on February 15 in the UK Conservative-held seat of Wellingborough and Kingswood. In Wellingborough MP Peter Bone was recalled following a six-week parliamentary suspension, while in Kingswood MP Chris Skidmore resigned in protest over more oil and gas licenses. In 2019 Bone won Wellingborough by 62.2-26.5 over Labour with 7.9% for the Liberal Democrats, while Skidmore won Kingswood by 56.2-33.4 over Labour with 6.9% Lib Dem. The Conservatives have lost safer seats at by-elections this term.

Argentine presidential runoff election live

Live commentary Monday morning on the Argentine runoff that could be won by the far-right Javier Milei. And should US Democrats replace Biden as their presidential nominee?

Live Commentary

9:18am Tuesday Milei will be inaugurated on December 10 for a four-year term. This is the second time the centre-left party has lost an Argentine presidential runoff after leading in the first round; this also occurred in 2015.

2:17pm With 99.3% counted, Milei has defeated Massa by 55.69-44.31, an 11.4% margin.

11:13am Legislative results: The better news for the left in Argentina is that, because of a system similar to first past the post for the Senate in the October 22 legislative and first round presidential elections, they still hold the Senate.

Massa’s Union for the Homeland (UftH) won 13 of the 24 senators elected, Milei’s Liberty Advances (LA) won seven senators and Bullrich’s Together for Change (TfC) two. UftH has a total of 35 of 72, while TfC and LA combined hold 31 seats. Five of the six others are formerly from the centre-left.

Proportional representation was used in the Chamber of Deputies, and UftH holds 108 of the 257 seats, with 93 TfC and 38 LA, giving the combined right (131 seats) a majority in the Chamber. 130 of the 257 Chamber seats were up at this election, and 24 of the 72 senators. The next Argentine legislative election is in late 2025.

An aside here: the Spanish Wikipedia page on the Argentine legislative results is better than the English page as it gives total numbers of seats, not just those elected in 2023. I use Google translate.

11:12am Over 96% counted, and Milei leads Massa by 55.8-44.2.

10:43am Bullrich voters swung behind Milei. In the first round in Buenos Aires city, Bullrich won 41.2%, Massa 32.2% and Milei 20.0%. In the runoff, Milei is winning this city by 57.3-42.7 with 93% in.

10:34am With 88% of precincts reporting, Milei leads by 55.9-44.1. The poll that gave Milei a 12.8-point lead will easily be the best.

10:14am Massa has conceded before official results are released at 11am. 80% has been counted already.

9:35am According to Bloomberg, Milei is probably winning according to leaked results.

9:11am Monday Bloomberg’s live blog is here and their results page is here. They expect results at 11am AEDT.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is a paid election analyst for The Conversation. His work for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

Polls close at 8am AEDT Monday for Argentina’s presidential runoff election. Argentina doesn’t release results until a substantial amount has been counted. In the October 22 first round, the first results were released about 11:20am AEDT. I expect faster counting with only two candidates and no other contests.

In the first round, the centre-left Sergio Massa won 36.8%, the far-right Javier Milei 30.0% and the conservative Patricia Bullrich 23.8%. A centrist candidate won 6.7% and the far-left 2.7%. Bullrich endorsed Milei on October 25. Milei is an admirer of Donald Trump and has called climate change a “socialist lie”.

Voting is compulsory. Polls mostly have Milei leads by mid-single figures, but a few have narrow Massa leads. One poll though gave Milei a 12.8-point lead. In a TV debate on November 12, Milei praised former British PM Margaret Thatcher. Thatcher went to war with Argentina in 1982 over the Falkland Islands; the British sank an Argentine warship, killing 323 people on board.

The only province out of 24 won by Bullrich in the first round was Buenos Aires city (note: this isn’t part of Buenos Aires province). Massa will hope that the higher-income and better-educated people in the city who supported Bullrich can’t stand Milei.

At the previous Argentine presidential election in 2019, the centre-left Alberto Fernández ousted conservative Mauricio Macri after one term by a 48.2-40.3 margin (a runoff isn’t needed if a candidate achieves over 45%). In 2015, Macri had a 51.3-48.7 runoff win. In 2011, current vice president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, who is now hated by the right, won a massive landslide with 54% in the first round; her nearest opponent (a socialist) got 17%.

Despite being eligible, Alberto Fernández did not contest this election, and his party nominated Massa as its candidate. Had Fernández stood, he would have been blamed for the over 100% inflation. I believe Massa has a much better chance to win than Fernández would have.

Should Biden follow Fernández’s example?

Joe Biden will turn 81 on Monday. Since March this year, his ratings in the FiveThirtyEight aggregate have worsened, and he’s currently at 55.5% disapprove, 39.0% approve (net -16.5). Most national polls now show Trump ahead, with or without third party candidates, and recent Siena polls for The New York Times gave Trump four-to-ten-point leads in five of the six closest 2020 Biden-won states.

While Trump led overall by five points in the Siena polls, an unnamed generic Democrat would lead Trump by eight. In a similar exercise a year before the 2020 election, Biden led Trump by two and a generic Democrat led by three. This suggests replacing Biden with a far younger Democrat would enhance Democrats’ chances of defeating Trump.

Pro-Biden Democrats argue that the November 7 off-year elections were great for Democrats, and therefore the polls showing Biden losing are wrong. There are two objections: first, that the off-year election polls were OK and polls for next November are measuring a completely different election.

Second, legislative elections were mediocre for Democrats. The celebrated victories in the Virginia legislature were by bare majorities in both chambers – 21-19 in the Senate, 51-49 in the House. This implies a Democratic lead by low single digits in Virginia overall. If Biden only wins Virginia by two points after winning by 10.1 in 2020, it’s very likely Trump wins the election overall.

Spanish Socialists form government

On Thursday, four months after the Spanish election that right-wing parties had been expected to win easily, current Socialist PM Pedro Sánchez won an investiture vote by 179 votes to 171. The Socialists made a controversial deal with the regionalist Junts party, which was the kingmaker after the election. This will be a second term for the Socialists.

No government has yet been formed in New Zealand, with National, ACT and NZ First still negotiating. During the next week there will be a US federal by-election in a safe Republican seat and a Dutch election. I will cover these elections in a post on next Saturday’s NZ Port Waikato by-election, which National should win.

Page 2 of 20
1 2 3 20