What's Next in The Democratic Race for President? Upcoming Primaries, Debates and the Convention

All eyes are on Super Tuesday to provide much-needed clarity to the chaotic Democratic primary for president but there's still a lot of race left before a nominee is determined.

Over 2,460 delegates are still up for grabs, signaling there's a long road ahead until someone clinches the 1,991 needed in order to secure the party's nomination.

"There is a lot of room left for the race to change," Elaine Kamarck told Newsweek. She is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and the author of Primary Politics: Everything You Need to Know About How America Nominates Its Presidential Candidates.

Four candidates remained in the race as of Wednesday afternoon: former Vice President Joe Biden, Hawaii Representative Tulsi Gabbard, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren.

A string of candidates dropped their White House bids this week to help unite the moderate wing of the Democratic Party behind Biden following a Sanders surge in the early voting states. Billionaire Michael Bloomberg left the race on Wednesday and immediately endorsed the former vice president. Former South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg and Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar did the same prior to Super Tuesday.

Results from the multi-state contest are still rolling in, but it looks like Biden and Sanders are in a close race for Democratic front runner. The former vice president is in the lead with 495 delegates but is closely followed by Sanders, who has 428 delegates. The New York Times estimates that Biden will walk away with 670 delegates after Super Tuesday while Sanders will have 589.

As the field continues to winnow, the next test for candidates will be their ability to compete in states that will be critical to the general election in November. Some areas to keep an eye on going forward are Michigan, Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania.

"We'll learn an awful lot in the coming weeks because we will be getting into big, industrial states that are very diverse and you'll be able to learn a lot about the appeals of the candidates," Kamarck added. "As the field narrows down, they want to know who will be strongest against Trump."

Here's everything you need to know about what happens next in the Democratic race.

Upcoming Primaries/Caucuses:

Voting will continue in the Democratic primary until early June. There's still 37 states and territories that will go to the polls to pick the candidate they want to see nominated at the party's convention. By the end of the month, roughly 65 percent of delegates will be allocated.

"March is the period where we'll either see one candidate really amass a delegate lead or we'll see it come down to two candidates who are sort of neck-and-neck with each other," Virginia Tech political scientist Caitlin Jewitt told Newsweek.

These are some of the most important dates to know:

March 10: Idaho, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota and Washington will all hold their primary contests that day. Michigan, a key state in the general election, will be the largest in play with 125 delegates to allocate. Overall, 9 percent of all pledged delegates will be up for grabs on March 10.

March 17: The states heading to the polls are Arizona, Florida, Illinois and Ohio. The biggest electoral prize is Florida, which will award 219 delegates. Polls currently show Biden leading the pack in the Sunshine State.

super tuesday voting arlington, virginia
A woman fills in her ballot for the Democratic presidential primary elections at the Sleepy Hollow Elementary School polling location on Super Tuesday, March 3, 2020 in Arlington, Virginia. Samuel Corum/Getty

April 28: New York and Pennsylvania will be the two biggest states on the ballot, allocating 274 delegates and 186 delegates, respectively. Other states that will head to the polls are Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland and Rhode Island.

June 2: This is the last major day for state primaries. New Jersey will be the largest state to vote as it's responsible for awarding 126 delegates. Montana, New Mexico, South Dakota and Washington D.C. will also weigh in on the race.

Next Democratic Debates:

The next Democratic debate is set for Sunday, March 15 in Phoenix, Arizona. It will be co-hosted by CNN and Univision starting at 9 p.m. ET. The location, moderators and requirements for qualification have yet to be announced by the Democratic National Committee.

By the time candidates take the stage in Arizona, nearly 50 percent of delegates will have been awarded. The debate, which will be the eleventh overall, will also take place just days before big primaries in Florida, Ohio, Illinois and Arizona.

The March debate is not likely to be the last. The DNC's primary plan included 12 debates spanning from 2019 to 2020, with the last expected to be held in April. No details on the April debate have been released yet.

The Democratic National Convention:

Democratic officials will meet in Milwaukee, Wisconsin for the party's nominating convention from July 13 to July 16.

Fears of a contested or "brokered" convention have been at the forefront of the Democratic primary for months. It's a scenario that could arise if no candidate wins the majority of pledged delegates. If that were to happen, the process would enter a second phase where powerful superdelegates come into play. Experts say a contested convention would throw the Democratic Party into chaos.

The latest FiveThirtyEight forecast, which has not been updated since before Super Tuesday, showed there was a 3 in 5 chance that no candidate captures the majority of delegates. There was also a 30 percent chance Biden would win the majority and an 8 percent chance Sanders would get the majority.

There has yet to be a contested convention in the modern era of politics. The last convention of any party to go beyond the first ballot was nearly 70 years ago.