What Happens To Rubio's Delegates Now?

March 17, 2016Mar 17, 2016

Now that Florida Sen. Marco Rubio has suspended his bid for Republican presidential nomination, who now gets the 169 delegates he won?


According to Fox News, it depends on state-by-state rules. Here's the breakdown:

1. In most states, Rubio's delegates will be unbound, which means they can choose any candidate that makes it to July's Republican convention in Cleveland. They'll be sought-after prizes as candidates try to woo them.
2. In several states, such as Iowa, Montana, Nevada, Puerto Rico (territory), Texas, Virginia, and Washington, Rubio's delegates are bound for the first round of voting. If there's no clear winner (for instance if Donald Trump doesn't have the 1,237 delegates needed for nomination), then a second vote occurs, in which case these states' Rubio delegates are released to vote for other candidates. This situation last happened during a brokered convention in 1976 when Gerald Ford wooed more candidates than Ronald Reagan.
3. In the case of Tennessee, Rubio's delegates are bound for the first two rounds of votes before being released. Rubio won 9 delegates in Tennessee.
4. In the case of South Carolina, delegates are bound for the first round of votes. However, if there is a second round, then they're automatically bound to the candidate who won second or third. This isn't a factor for Rubio delegates, though, because he did not win any in South Carolina.

Whether Rubio's 169 delegates will make a difference in who secures the nomination at the convention is yet to be seen.