March 15, which will see elections in Ohio, Illinois, and Missouri, is basically the Super Tuesday of the Midwest. The north-central region of the United States has earned its place in history books for its once-booming automobile industry and agricultural know-how, especially when it comes to growing corn and soy beans. If presidential candidates can channel these states and ensure the protection of their industries, they will have gained a major stronghold in the 2016 election. One of the sturdiest such strongholds is Ohio, which offers ample delegates, but allocates them differently, depending on the party.
For Republicans, Ohio is either a major win or a potentially devastating loss. The state will hand 66 delegates to the candidate who received the most votes statewide in a winner-take-all fashion. Though Ohio only holds the fourth-largest number of delegates on Tuesday, its "all or nothing" system makes it one of the most important wins in the race — especially for the state's governor, John Kasich. If he can't win the very state he speaks of in great detail during each debate, then he's going to have a tough time continuing to fund his campaign. Currently, it's quite possible the candidate will defeat frontrunner Donald Trump's lead in the state. Equipped with the loyal support of 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney, former California governor Arnold Schwartzenegger, and five Ohio State football coaches, he's certainly gaining as much, if not more attention, than the real-estate mogul. Romney appeared at a Kasich rally on Monday in Westerville and urged voters to do the "right thing."
I want to make sure you guys will do the right thing tomorrow. You’ve got to turn out tomorrow and make sure we send a signal loud and clear that a man with integrity, a man with a clear track record, a man who has shown what he would do to get a state to turn around, will do the same thing for the country.
The Buckeye State might not be as decisive for Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders as it is for Kasich, but it still possesses a highly desirable amount of delegates — 160, to be exact. As opposed to allocating them in a winner-take-all manner, the Democratic delegation has chosen to use a more proportional system. According to the proportional primary, 93 of the 160 delegates will be assigned according to the results in each of the state's 16 congressional districts. In addition, 50 delegates will be allocated based on the statewide vote (all congressional districts combined). Lastly, Ohio houses 17 unpledged delegates, or superdelegates, who can support whomever they please, regardless of the voters' popular opinion. Thus far, 12 of them have sided with Clinton and one has pledged allegiance to Sanders. The other four are undecided.
Clinton is leading in Ohio's polls, and won the state in 2008 when she campaigned against Barack Obama, but Sanders' Michigan victory last week has lent some considerable momentum to his campaign in the region. According to Cleveland.com, Clinton's major support bases are in cities like Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Toledo. On the flip side, Sanders is largely relying on support from the younger crowd in college towns. But Sanders' surprise win in Michigan's primary taught us it's never too late to change the game, and as of now, no outcome is for certain.