Current Delegate Count (03-07-2012)

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Here are delegate counts as of 5:55 a.m. ET on Wednesday, March 17, as tabulated by The Associated Press:

 Mitt Romney, 415 delegates.

Rick Santorum, 176 delegates.

Newt Gingrich, 105 delegates.

Ron Paul, 47 delegates.

All told, the Super Tuesday states will send 437 delegates to the national convention beginning on Aug. 27 in Tampa, Fla. Some of them are superdelegates with automatic slots, who are not in play in Tuesday’s elections. The AP count includes superdelegates who have already made their choices.

What’s a Superdelegate?

Unlike most convention delegates, the superdelegates are not selected based on the party primaries and caucuses in each U.S. state, in which voters choose among candidates for the party’s presidential nomination.

 Instead, most of the superdelegates are seated automatically, based solely on their status as current (Republican and Democrat) or former (Democrat only) party leaders and elected officials. Others are chosen during the primary season. All the superdelegates are free to support any candidate for the nomination.

 Although originally created to describe this type of Democrat delegate, the term has become widely used to describe these particular delegates in both parties, even though it is not an official term used by either party.

 In 2012, there are 126 Republican superdelegates.There are potentially 3 superdelegates in each state, consisting of the state chairman and two RNC committeemembers. However, certain states either have no superdelegates or have them but their votes are bound by the results of the state vote.

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