Introductions and Debates
(Beginning - Jan. 31, 2016)
The candidates have built their campaign staffs and fundraising networks. Now it’s time to meet the voters. Candidates focus their personal appearances on the states that vote earliest—Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina—and try to build national followings through the party-sanctioned televised debates.
(Feb. 1, 2016 - Feb. 29, 2016)
Four states take the spotlight in February—Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina—as the nominating contests begin.
(March 1, 2016 - March 14, 2016)
The delegate hunt heats up with “Super Tuesday” (also known as the “SEC Primary’’--named after collegiate sports’ Southeastern Conference) with at least 11 states holding primary elections on March 1, including delegate-rich Texas.
The Delegate Scramble
(March 15, 2016 - June 14, 2016)
March 15 is the earliest that states can award all GOP delegates to a single, top vote-winner, making it easier for top candidates to build a lead. Florida and Ohio, which vote March 15, is the first big Republican “winner-take-all’’ prize. More than 60% of GOP delegates will be awarded by late March. (Democratic rules make similar calculations difficult.)
Running Mates and Conventions
(June 1, 2016 - July 28, 2016)
The presumed nominees usually announce their vice presidential running mates just ahead of the national conventions, which will be in July, a month earlier than in prior cycles.
The General Election
(Nov. 8, 2016)
Election Day is Nov. 8, 2016, but early-voting rules mean that many ballots will be cast earlier.