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The 2012 Republican presidential primaries are the selection processes in which voters of the Republican Party are electing delegates to the Republican National Convention of the party. This convention nominate a candidate to run for President of the United States in the 2012 presidential election. There will be 2,286 delegates chosen, and a candidate must accumulate 1,144 delegate votes to win the nomination.
To become the Republican Party's nominee for the 2012 presidential election a candidate needs a majority of 1,144 delegates to vote for him. The 2012 race is significantly different from earlier races. Many states have switched from their old winner-take-all allocation to proportional allocation. Many remaining winner-take-all states are allocating delegates to both the winner of each congressional district and the winner of the state. The change was made to prolong the race, giving lesser known candidates a chance and making it harder for a frontrunner to secure the majority early. It was also hoped that this change in the election system would energize the base of the party.
But the actual election of the delegates are many times at a later date. Delegates are elected in different ways that vary from state to state. They can be elected at local conventions, selected from slates submitted by the candidates, selected at committee meetings or elected directly at the caucuses and primaries. Until the delegates are actually elected the delegate numbers are by nature projections, but it is only in the nonbinding caucus states where they are not allocated at the primary or caucus date.
A brokered convention is a situation in United States politics in which there are not enough delegates won during the presidential primary and caucus elections for a single candidate to have a pre-existing majority, during the first official vote for a political party's presidential candidate at its nominating convention.