(CNN) The Super Tuesday presidential nominating contests seem to have solidified John McCain's frontrunner status - but failed to give either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama grounds for an exclusive claim to that title on the Democrattic side.
In the latest installment of America Votes 2008, watch the candidates and their campaigns reflect on how they fared in Tuesday's primaries and caucuses, and reveal their plans as the campaign continues.
Related: Listen to post-Super Tuesday analysis from CNN Political Editor Mark Preston and CNN's John Lisk.
(CNN) - With Sens. Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton almost even in delegate counts, the two Democratic presidential candidates will focus on several weekend contests and then a trio of primaries in the Washington area next Tuesday.
Super Tuesday delivered a split decision for the Democrats. CNN estimates showed Clinton earned a handful more delegates than Obama, who surprised observers by taking states where the senator from New York had large polling leads until recently.
The latest estimate gave Clinton 582 of the 1,681 delegates at stake Tuesday, compared with 562 for Obama. It will take time to determine the final distribution because of complicated formulas.
(CNN) - Super Tuesday positioned Sen. John McCain as the clear Republican front-runner, while a split decision in the Democratic race may eventually help Sen. Barack Obama, according to CNN's political analysts.
McCain extended his lead in the GOP race with impressive coast-to-coast wins from New York to California, while former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee carried states in the South. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won seven races, including his home state of Massachusetts.
"I think we did achieve clarity. John McCain will be the Republican nominee," CNN analyst Jeffrey Toobin said. "Mike Huckabee did better than a lot expected. If you look at the delegates, there is no way either Huckabee or Romney can catch up. I think we did learn that much."
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Senate Democratic leaders have summoned presidential candidates Sens. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and Barack Obama, D-Ill., to the Senate Wednesday for a 5:45 p.m. vote on a Democratic-backed economic stimulus bill.
The measure needs 60 votes to pass and right now the outcome is too close too call, according to senators and aides on both sides of the aisle.
However, heavy lobbying from the AARP and other interest groups has raised Democratic hopes. One Republican senator who opposes the Democrats' bill - John Thune of South Dakota - told CNN the lobbying had forced Republicans to change their strategy on the issue, although most still oppose the bill.
Until Tuesday, Republican leaders pushed for an up-or-down vote on the House-passed bill, which is centered on rebate checks for low- and moderate-income taxpayers. But after the lobbying intensified, GOP leaders
said they would support providing rebate checks to more people - agreeing with Senate Democrats that low-income Social Security recipients and disabled veterans should get rebates.
But most Republicans still adamantly disagree with other parts of the Democratic bill, such as the inclusion of new unemployment benefits and assistance for energy costs for low-income households.
Republicans want to offer their own amendment but so far have been blocked by Democrats.
(CNN)—A record 23 states will hold primaries and caucuses on Super Tuesday. Long lines, unprecedented numbers of absentee ballots, and record turnouts are likely to play a big role in determining when results are projected.
Georgia’s primary is expected to be the first definitive Super Tuesday outcome – the state’s results may be available in the 7 p.m. hour, shortly after polls close there. The outcomes of Massachusetts, New Jersey, Delaware and Connecticut will likely be projected in the 8 p.m. hour, followed by New York sometime after 9 p.m. ET.
California’s polls are the last to close Tuesday - at 8 p.m. PT, 11 p.m. ET - but the results might not be clear for hours. With an expected 1 to 2 million absentee ballots, along with the nation’s largest number of registered voters, the results may not be known until Wednesday morning.
Watch CNN Super Tuesday for the latest developments in key races.
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–CNN's Emily Sherman
(CNN) – Confused about how a candidate actually wins their party's nomination? CNN's Jill Dougherty breaks it down.
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(CNN) - A new poll out Sunday suggests Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are locked in a dead heat for the biggest prize on Super Tuesday: delegate-rich California.
According to a just released poll from the Field Research Corporation, Clinton only holds a statistically insignificant 2 point lead over Obama in California, 36 percent to 34 percent. Meanwhile the poll shows 18 percent of California Democrats have yet to make up their minds.
The poll suggests the race has significantly narrowed in the state in only a matter weeks– most polls two weeks ago showed Clinton with a double-digit lead there. A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll taken a week ago showed Clinton with a 17 point lead in California. John Edwards, then still a presidential candidate, registered 11 percent.
If the eventual outcome of the race is as close as the poll suggests, both candidates stand to rack up significant numbers of delegates in the state: On the Democratic side, California awards its 370 delegates proportionately.
The poll shows the race on the Republican side isn't as close - John McCain holds a 32-24 percent lead over Romney with Mike Huckabee at 13 percent. Ron Paul pulls 10 percent of support among likely Republican voters.
California is worth 170 delegates for the Republicans and unlike the Democrats, the winner of the state's primary will be awarded them all.
The poll, conducted January 25-Febuary 1, surveyed 481 likely Republican primary voters and 511 likely Democratic voters and carries a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.
– CNN Producer Alexander Mooney
(CNN) - While the nation was gearing up for Super Bowl Sunday, the remaining contenders for the presidency kicked off their final maneuvers for Super Tuesday, fine-tuning their closing messages in appearances on the Sunday talk shows and fanning out across the nation for an exhaustive list of last-minute campaign stops.
Sen. John McCain expressed some hope of clinching his party's nomination Tuesday - and, minutes later, found himself speaking on live national television with Sen. Hillary Clinton, who has vowed she is the Democrat best prepared to beat him in a general election.
Smiling and exchanging pleasantries briefly on "Fox News Sunday," the two - apparently unaware they'd be put on the air together live between their separate interviews from different cities - vowed that if selected for their parties' nominations they would have a "respectful" debate focusing on serious "differences."
Of course, neither knows who will ultimately enter the general election. Clinton is locked in a neck-and-neck race with Sen. Barack Obama. McCain has a clear lead in polls heading toward Tuesday, but is facing stepped-up attacks by former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.
Asked whether he may win the nomination Tuesday, McCain responded, "I hope so. But you know, you don't know for sure. I think we got a lot of good momentum and a lot of endorsements, and crowds who are enthusiastic, and we're working hard, and I'm guardedly optimistic."
(CNN) - Is Super Tuesday the end?
To paraphrase Winston Churchill, it is not the end, but it is more than the end of the beginning. It is perhaps the beginning of the end.
But with only two or three major candidates left in each party, and with more than half of the country voting, surely both races will be decided on February 5.
Maybe. Maybe not.
LOS ANGELES (CNN) – CNN announced Thursday that it will partner with the Ohio Democratic Party and the Ohio Republican Party for back-to-back presidential debates at the end of February.
With the race for each party nomination likely to extend beyond the February 5 Super Tuesday contests, it’s increasingly possible the critical battleground state of Ohio – which holds its presidential primary March 4, along with three other states - could very well determine the 2008 Democratic and Republican nominees.
"Ohio will once again decide who wins the White House,” said Ohio Democratic Party Chairman Chris Redfern. “The Ohio Democratic debate is important because it will allow the next President of the United States to address the issues most important to Ohioans."
Republican Party Deputy Chairman Kevin DeWine also highlighted the state’s potential kingmaker status. "No Republican has ever won the White House without winning Ohio,” said DeWine. “It's a critical battleground state in November that could play a deciding role on March 4. We're proud to partner with CNN on this debate in advance of what could be a decisive primary election in the Buckeye State."
The Democratic debate will take place Wednesday, February 27, while the Republican debate will follow on Thursday, February 28. The network said further details will be released soon.