Super Tuesday is the name given to the day in an election year, when a number of U.S. States hold elections simultaneously, to help decide who will be the final two candidates that will represent the Democratic and Republican Party for the Presidential elections in November.
Super Tuesday started when three states decided to hold the elections on the same day in the 1980's. It has since expanded to many states and this year a record twenty-four States are holding it on the same day, hence the nickname -"Super Duper Tuesday".
The two main contenders for the Democratic Party are Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, who so far, are neck-to-neck (very close), in the number of states they have won. For the Republican Party, the two main contenders are John McCain and Mitt Romney. Mr. McCain is currently slightly ahead of Mr. Romney.
Because "Super Duper Tuesday" will have so many states participating, it is likely that a winner from each party will emerge. However, if they still remain too close to decide, Texas, Pennsylvania and North Carolina will be holding their primary elections in the next few months, which will help make the final decision.
The candidate who wins the most States (one from each party), is sent to a National Party Convention, where he or she is then officially nominated to run for President by their party. In case you don't know anything about the four candidates (one of them will definitely be the President of the United States), here is a picture of each of them with a brief background:
The Democratic Party Candidates
Ms. Clinton was born on October 26th, 1947, the eldest of three children. She grew up in Park Ridge, Illinois. Her parents always encouraged her to pursue a career of her choice. She received her undergraduate degree from Wellesley College and her law degree from Yale University.
She met Bill Clinton while at Yale and the two got married in 1975. Mr. Clinton went on to become the 42nd President of the United States, serving for eight years from 1993-2001. They have one daughter, Chelsea, who is twenty-seven years old.
Barack Obama was born on August 4th, 1961 in Hawaii. Growing up, he spent a few years in Indonesia, before settling down in New York. He received his undergraduate degree from Columbia University in 1983 and law degree from Harvard University in 1991.
Mr.Obama met his wife, Michelle in 1988, when he was a summer associate at the Chicago law firm of Sidley & Austin. They were married in October 1992, and live in Kenwood, Chicago, with their daughters, Malia (8) and Sasha (6).
The Republican Party Candidates
John McCain the leading Republican candidate was born on August 29th,1936 at an American Air Base in the Panama Canal Zone, where his father served as a Navy Admiral. As a young boy, Mr. McCain moved a lot, depending on where his father was serving.
Like his father and grandfather, Mr. McCain joined the Navy and served the country in the war in Vietnam. He married his current wife Cindy in 1984 and they have seven children (three from Mr. McCain's previous marriage) and four grandchildren.
Mitt Romney was born on March 12th, 1947 in Detroit, Michigan and is the youngest of four children. Mr. Romney graduated from Bringham Young University in 1971 and then with a joint degree in law and business from Harvard University in 1975. He then went on to start a very successful private equity company (give small companies money and guidance to grow) called Bain Capital.
He married his high school sweetheart Ann in 1969, and they have five boys ranging from 26 years to 37 years of age. Mr. Romney also has ten grandchildren.
There you have it - the skinny on all four candidates. We now all await the results of "Super Duper Tuesday" with abated breath, as it will give us some idea of who will become the 44th President of The United States of America!