Super Tuesday Night Timeline - Some Wednesday Final Thoughts

Wednesday brings us word that nothing is settled in the Presidential race. That's good news for Kansas Republicans, who'll suddenly find themselves in demand since they don't caucus until Saturday, and Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney need their help if they hope to keep pace with John McCain. Talk about spiking interest in participating - the turnout for the Democratic caucuses Tuesday night prompted the GOP to add a second site for Shawnee County. In addition to Heritage Hall at the Expocentre, overflow will head to the Shawnee Room in the Maner Conference Center next door. Visiting with a few ladies who participated in the Democratic caucuses, they said the excitement in the air reminded them of college, and bus trips to Denver to see Robert Kennedy. The fact the nominees are still up in the air makes it exciting and fun to see the campaign unfold in Kansas. And many other states, as well. For too long, Kansas was a state candidates passed over, with the nomination either wrapped up or the assumption being it was a lock for the Republican nominee anyway. The turnout for the Democrats Tuesday night should illustrate nothing is certain, and the lack of a candidate clinching either nomination is making campaigns realize every voter in every state is important. And it seems to me that's how it should be.

 

10:24 - A quick check in the newsroom for any updated results while Mark gets ready for sports. Still sitting at 84-percent of the numbers in for Kansas. A check of the list of sites reporting shows a convincing win for Obama in Kansas. Clinton managed over 40-percent in just seven of the 33 sites reporting, and she only won in one of those sites - in Paola, 51 to 49-percent.

9:42 pm - Trying to get ready for the newscast. Rae Chelle and Blake haven't made it back yet - the weather triggered a safety mechanism on our live truck and wouldn't allow it to start! Don't worry - they worked it out and are on the road, driving slowly of course because streets are getting slick. Fortunately, they'd sent back video and interviews earlier, so, with a team effort, we'll get her report on the air! (ahhh - I hear the back up beeps from the truck now! They're here!)

9:30 pm - Topeka West High School is just now wrapping up. They had more than 1300 participants there. Deb Farris reporting from our sister station KAKE-TV in Wichita just told us the site she was at had 1600 participants. 70-percent of the caucus sites have reported numbers now - seems each time we've refreshed our computer screen tonight, new numbers have popped up. By the end of the night, the party will divvy up 32 delegates for Obama and Clinton.

8:36 pm - The latest national count from the Associated Press: Clinton wins NY, NJ, Massachusetts, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Arkansas; Obama wins Illinois, Georgia, Delaware and Alabama; McCain takes NY, NJ, Illinois, Connecticut and Delaware; Huckabee carries Alabama, Arkansas and West Virginia; and Romney wins Massachusetts

8:30 pm - Numbers coming in fast and furious in Kansas. Just took a break to powder my nose before an on-air cutin. Rae Chelle tells us 900 people participated at the Topeka West caucus site. Still working on final numbers -- campaign supporters are trying to sway 22 undecideds right now.

8:06 pm - Just checked with Blake, our photographer with Rae Chelle. He says voting at their site began about ten minutes ago. The first numbers have shown up on the KS Democratic Party's results page. The Highland Park High School caucus site - Sen. Anthony Hensley's district - has reported. The vote there was 80-percent Obama, 20-percent Clinton. 900 people participated.

8:02 pm - Mitt Romney is projected to take the state of which he was governor, Massachusetts. Dems are too close to call there. Same goes for the GOP in Oklahoma. Meantime, I just heard back from a fire official in Lawrence. He tells me caucus organizers at the Abe and Jake's site saw such a crowd showing up, they realized they risked running over capacity, so they took it upon themselves to start moving the overflow to Liberty Hall as a secondary site. Sounds like an impressive turnout all around. Our sister station in Wichita tells us it's capacity-crowds there as well.

7:40 pm - More national numbers coming in - for the GOP, Mike Huckabee has won Alabama and Arkansas; Hillary Clinton took the Democrats vote in Arkansas. Obama is projected to win Illinois, while Clinton is projected to take Oklahoma and Tennessee. I might not keep up on all the numbers here - go to www.votewibw.com for the latest from CBS News.

7:30 pm - The Topeka Democratic caucus sites still aren't voting - still getting people in the door. I have Rae Chelle's feed up, and we're hearing chants of "O-bam-a" and "Hill-a-ry" from the crowd. A viewer just called from one of the Lawrence caucus sites, saying it's filled beyond capacity - and fire officials are making them set up a "satellite" area. We'll check out that report.

7:10 pm - Thought I'd share what happens behind the scenes as the night goes on. Right now, watching CNN project McCain and Obama the winners in New Jersey. Here, checking out the scene at the Robinson Middle School KS Democratic caucus site. Wow - packed house! The party was saying people were excited, and it looks like they are. Rae Chelle Davis is getting ready to do a report for our sister station, KAKE in Wichita. Brian Quick and Josh Mabry just checked in from the Topeka West site. They just cut off the line - you had to be in line by 7 pm to participate. They still have 200 people waiting to get in before they can get started.

 

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