502-70: Clinton Leads Where It Really Matters
Super Tuesday could spell the beginning of the end for Bernie Sanders
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 22, 2016 12:06 PM CST
Hillary Clinton speaks at a rally at Texas Southern University.   (AP Photo/Pat Sullivan)

(Newser) – Bernie Sanders assured voters on Sunday that he'd pull off an upset to become the Democratic nominee. The delegate count in the Democratic primary, however, shows that's not very likely. A total of 2,383 delegates are needed to win the nomination, and Clinton now has 502 compared to Sanders' 70. That includes 451 superdelegates (party insiders who can flip their support later) for Clinton and just 19 for Sanders, though both candidates are tied in the pledged delegate count at 51, reports the New York Times. Another 880 delegates will be awarded when 11 mostly-Southern states vote on Super Tuesday on March 1, and Clinton is expected to win a "jackpot from the overwhelmingly black and Hispanic areas," per the Times.

Clinton "could effectively end the race in less than two weeks' time," one analyst says. Sanders' campaign manager admits Super Tuesday could be a struggle, but "because we can do the long game, once we get past March 1, the calendar changes dramatically," he tells the AP. Sanders is focusing on winning Colorado, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Oklahoma, and keeping close primary races in other states to avoid handing Clinton the delegates that come with huge victories. Still, President Obama's 2008 campaign manager, who supports Clinton, says Sanders would need "surprising landslides in surprising places" and "other than Vermont, I don't see a single state where Hillary Clinton is going to lose in a blowout."