Texas, can we please have a winner?

Nearly three days after the Texas caucus, only 41% of the votes have been counted and there is still no winner.

By Vincent Rossmeier
Published March 8, 2008 12:30AM (EST)

The results of the Texas Democratic caucuses are still up in the air, and may be for weeks. The Associated Press is reporting that at last count on Thursday afternoon, only 41 percent of precincts have reported their official vote counts. That's after state Democratic Party officials had said they planned to release their last round of unofficial results Thursday night.

After winning the Democratic primary in the state, Hillary Clinton trails Barack Obama in the caucus tally so far by a margin of 44 percent to 56 percent. The caucus determines 67 delegates, while Clinton's primary victory netted her 65 delegates to his 61, so it's possible that ultimately Obama will come out of Texas with the delegate count victory.

There are numerous reasons for the delay. Turnout for the caucuses was larger than expected and overwhelmed election officials. As CNN notes, vote counting for the caucuses was suspended Wednesday morning and only resumed Wednesday evening. And the AP cites another reason that may be even more important in explaining the lag: "phoning in the results to state party officials is voluntary."

Vincent Rossmeier

Vincent Rossmeier is an editorial assistant at Salon.

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