Super Tuesday Solidifies the 2024 Election

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Quick Hits: Today’s Top Stories

  • Former President Donald Trump was projected to win 14 of 15 states in last night’s Super Tuesday primary contests, adding hundreds of delegates to his already large lead and closing in on formally clinching the Republican nomination for president. Former Ambassador Nikki Haley won just one state last night, Vermont, and added nine delegates to her tally. President Joe Biden won primary contests in 14 states last night, though a protest movement by progressive voters in Minnesota upset with Biden’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war did net 19 percent support for “uncommitted,” enough to win eight delegates. The Wall Street Journal reported this morning that Haley will speak at 10 a.m. ET to suspend her campaign, though she is not expected to endorse Trump.
  • U.S. military cargo planes dropped a second round of humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip on Tuesday, delivering more than 36,800 meals as part of a joint operation with the Jordanian military. “The [Department of Defense] humanitarian airdrops contribute to ongoing U.S. and partner nation government efforts to provide life-saving humanitarian assistance to the people in Gaza,” U.S. Central Command wrote in a statement on Tuesday. “We continue planning for follow-on aid delivery missions. These airdrops are part of a sustained effort to get more aid into Gaza, including by expanding the flow of aid through land corridors.” The first aid drop, which took place on Saturday, delivered more than 38,000 ready-to-eat meals. 
  • Prosecutors announced a superseding indictment on Tuesday against Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez of New Jersey and his wife, adding a dozen charges, including obstruction, bribery, extortion, and acting as a foreign agent as a public official. Menendez was already facing four conspiracy counts related to the underlying “substantive crimes” charged in the new indictment. Prosecutors have alleged Menedez and his wife accepted bribes—including gold bars, cash, and a luxury car—in exchange for helping the Egyptian and Qatari governments and three businessmen.
  • The Department of Education on Tuesday fined Liberty University—a Christian school in Virginia—$14 million for violations of the Clery Act, which requires schools that receive any federal funding to collect data on campus crime and share information about threats with students. According to an investigation, Liberty had failed to adequately comply with elements of the Clery Act related to preventing and investigating sexual assault and harassment; federal officials also found that Liberty had not collected complete or accurate crime statistics. This is the largest fine ever imposed under the Clery Act, and the terms of the settlement between the university and the Department of Education also require Liberty to spend $2 million to improve campus safety. 
  • Federal prosecutors on Tuesday indicted 63-year-old David Franklin Slater, a civilian employee of the Air Force and former U.S. Army lieutenant colonel, for allegedly sharing classified national defense information related to the war in Ukraine on a “foreign online dating platform.” He was passing the information to a co-conspirator who “claimed to be a female living in Ukraine on the foreign dating website,” the Justice Department alleged. “The co-conspirator regularly asked Slater to provide her with sensitive, non-public, closely held and classified [national defense information] and called Slater in their messages her ‘secret informant love’ and her ‘secret agent.’”
  • Republican Sen. Tom Cotton of Arkansas announced Tuesday he will seek the role of GOP conference chair, the third-ranking leadership position among Senate Republicans. The current conference chair, Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming, said he will run for Senate GOP whip, the second-ranking post in the party, instead of joining the race to succeed outgoing Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
  • Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, a Democrat-turned-Independent, announced on Tuesday she will not run for reelection, narrowing what would have been a three-person race with Democratic Rep. Ruben Gallego and failed GOP gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake. “Because I choose civility, understanding, listening, working together to get stuff done, I will leave the Senate at the end of this year,” she said in a video. Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, who is running to succeed McConnell, endorsed Lake’s Senate bid earlier this morning.
  • The Department of Treasury on Tuesday banned Greece-based software developer Intellexa, which created spyware that can turn smartphones into surveillance devices, from doing business in the U.S. The program, called Predator, has reportedly been sold to governments that have used it to target U.S. officials, journalists, and activists.

Just Another Super Tuesday

Former President Donald Trump speaks at an election night watch party at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida on March 05, 2024 after he was projected to win 14 of 15 Super Tuesday primary contests. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Former President Donald Trump speaks at an election night watch party at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach, Florida on March 05, 2024 after he was projected to win 14 of 15 Super Tuesday primary contests. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The biggest winner of yesterday’s “Super Tuesday” primary elections night wasn’t former President Donald Trump, former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, or President Joe Biden. It was Jason Palmer, an entrepreneur and investor who beat Biden in American Samoa’s Democratic presidential caucuses last night, securing the territory’s six delegates. “You’re probably wondering, ‘Who is this Jason Palmer, I’ve never heard of him,’” Palmer, who campaigned in the territory via Zoom, told Samoan voters in a video message posted on his campaign’s YouTube channel last week. “Well, in the mainland, I’m actually very well known as an education technology leader, investor, and executive.” He won the territory with 51 votes.

In the comparably less exciting contest on the Republican side, the result was as predicted. GOP primary voters across the country filtered through school gyms, libraries, churches, and even garages to cast ballots overwhelmingly for Trump, who swept 14 of the 15 states that held primaries on Tuesday. Haley managed to eke out a narrow victory in one state, but it’s now only a matter of time before the former president officially locks down the nomination. The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this morning that Haley is set to deliver remarks at 10 a.m. ET today and suspend her campaign.

Heading into Super Tuesday, polling suggested Haley could have a decent showing in a couple of states. But even in most of those contests, the question was never whether Haley could actually win outright, only if she could eat into Trump’s margin of victory enough to peel away some delegates. Vermont was the one exception—Haley clinched the state, winning 50 percent of the vote to Trump’s 46 percent, likely on the backs of independent and even Democratic voters given the state’s open primary. (Haley also nabbed an endorsement from the state’s moderate Republican Gov. Phil Scott in January.) 

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