The presidential primaries are in motion, Super Tuesday has come and gone with media and candidate attention emphasizing the iconic day. With all of the hype placed on Super Tuesday, it’s fair to wonder to what degree the Missouri primary will influence the overall race.
After Super Tuesday, Missouri is a part of the second big round of states voting. March 15, six contests will take place, including Ohio, Florida, North Carolina and Illinois — collectively 792 delegates up for grabs for Democrats and 367 delegates for Republicans.
Randy Hagerty, political science department chair, says despite the hype of Super Tuesday, Missouri still has the potential to be influential because its primary falls early in the sequential voting process.
“The [primary] contest will be over when April or May rolls around, but we’re early enough in the calendar I think to where Missouri does matter in choosing the next president, but you have to consider we are one of many other states.”
– Randy Hagerty, political science department chair
Hagerty says the six other states Missouri will vote with have higher populations than Missouri. This means the other states will have more delegates to offer candidates. He says if candidates are striving to maximize their delegates, they would spend more time in the other states. However, Hagerty says Missouri still has delegates open, which will be attractive for candidates trying to win them.
Because other states will vote on March 15, where the candidates will decide to travel to campaign is still up in the air. is likely that the candidates’ schedules have yet to be created so far in advance and may not develop until after the results on Super Tuesday.
Senior Houston Roberts is the former president of College Democrats and currently serves as secretary of the College Democrats of Missouri. In addition, he is currently volunteering with Hillary Clinton’s campaign. Roberts says he thinks Clinton’s schedule won’t be announced until after the voting in South Carolina February 27.
“We only have a vague idea of what that’s going to look like heading into Super Tuesday and even into the March 15 primary in Missouri,” Roberts says.
Roberts says he has a contact in Iowa who wasn’t aware Clinton would be visiting until four days before her arrival.
Roberts says Missouri could become a grab state for candidates, but he thinks it will be a toss up. For the democrats, he says there is a lot of organizing in Missouri for Bernie Sanders. Sanders was in Missouri two weeks ago, but he says there is a Clinton presence in Missouri. He says people are energized and mobilizing all over the state.
Energy and mobility efforts to get Truman students to vote are strong on campus by students and student organizations. Junior Jake Buxton, College Republicans chair, says this year the College Democrats and the College Republicans teamed up in a bipartisan effort to assist students with registering to vote in the primaries.
Buxton says the organizations branched out to locations around campus that would engage students more, like Ryle and Missouri halls. After three days, Buxton says 82 students were registered to vote in Adair County. Buxton says he thinks students are hesitant to register to vote because they are unfamiliar with the process instead of a disinterest in the process.
“There’s a lot of excitement from people — a lot of people we had to encourage was more not knowing how the switching process worked as opposed to, ‘I don’t want to’,” Buxton says. “We experienced, ‘Oh you’re registering to vote? Yeah, I’ll sign up!’ responses.”
Voter registration is essential to casting a ballot for the 2016 primary election in Missouri on March 15, 2016. In such a competitive presidential race, candidates and supporters will be advocating for citizens to vote in the election cycle.
Recently candidates traveled to Missouri to host campaign rallies and events. On March 12, Bernie Sanders was in Springfield, Mo. for a rally at the JQH Arena to discuss policies. Clinton made an appearance on March 11 in Kansas City and St. Louis on March 12, 2016. Donald Trump was also present in St. Louis, Mo. this past weekend.