WASHINGTON (AP) — It’s trading places time.
The presidential candidates swap states after Saturday’s split-screen race that featured a GOP primary won by Donald Trump in South Carolina and Democratic caucuses that favored Hillary Clinton in Nevada. Next up: The Democrats compete in South Carolina, and the Republican field fights for Nevada.
What to watch for on Sunday, the day after the latest round of voting:
GOP GONERS? Jeb Bush pulled out Saturday night after a disappointing finish. Will South Carolina also doom Ben Carson and John Kasich? Kasich said before the primary he’d “keep hanging in there” regardless. Also struggling: Carson, looking for someplace — anyplace — to shine. The earlier races in Iowa and New Hampshire turned out to be the end of the line for six candidates.
ABOUT LAST NIGHT: If it’s Sunday morning, you can bet the candidates and their partisans will be popping up on TV talk shows to put a positive spin on the night before. Look for the victors and also-rans from Saturday night to find reasons to crow — or at least offer reassurances — once they put on their Sunday morning makeup. On the morning show lineup: Trump, Clinton, Sanders, Kasich, Marco Rubio, maybe more.
SHUTTLE DIPLOMACY: Follow those zigzag flight plans. The Republicans have just days to go before Tuesday’s GOP caucuses in Nevada; the Democrats have a little longer until their Feb. 27 primary in South Carolina. But right around the corner for both sides is Super Tuesday on March 1, when voters in a dozen states plus American Samoa pick their presidential favorites. So watch the candidates and their allies fan out in all directions as the calendar gets more crowded, looking for their best prospects for picking up delegates. Rubio is stopping by Tennessee and Arkansas on his way to Nevada on Sunday. Trump was popping into Atlanta. Clinton headed off to Texas on Saturday night to promote early voting there. Bernie Sanders was making a Sunday beeline for South Carolina.
AD IT UP: As the race spreads out, so do the advertising dollars. Beginning this week, candidates and their supportive super PACs are planning commercials in 22 states, according to advertising tracker Kantar Media’s CMAG. Texas is due for the heaviest spending, with about $2 million in TV time booked. Delegate-rich states like Michigan, Florida and Virginia also are popular among the presidential crowd. Some interesting notes about the coming ads: Sanders, at the moment, is planning to spend almost $1 million more than Clinton, and Rubio and a super PAC helping him have hardly any airtime reserved.
RUNNING ON EMPTY: Each new round of voting brings a new round of frantic UPPERCASE appeals for cash from candidates claiming they DESPERATELY need a fresh infusion of CASH to keep up the fight. The risk of inbox internal combustion will be high on Sunday.