Today's presidential primaries in six states--including California--offer a huge cache of convention delegates but will do little more than confirm the obvious. Arkansas Gov. Bill Clinton needs fewer than 100 of the 700 Democratic delegates up for grabs to clinch his party's nomination. President Bush wrapped up the Republican nomination last month; his share of the the 427 GOP delegates at stake will simply add to his winning margin. CALIFORNIA
Democrats: Results in New Jersey, Ohio and Alabama likely will have won the nomination for Clinton even before the polls close in California. Nonetheless, he badly wants to win here for symbolic reasons. Losing would tarnish the day and fuel doubts about his chances in November. For former California Gov. Edmund G. (Jerry) Brown Jr., a California victory would add a final positive note to a campaign that long ago exceeded expectations. It also would help his efforts to transform his candidacy into a reform movement that lasts beyond the election season.
Republicans: Like Clinton, Bush is hoping for a strong showing that solidifies his prospects in a state that never has been especially receptive to him. At one time, challenger Patrick J. Buchanan had looked to California to provide one last boost to his message of discontent with Bush. Now he's mainly trying to position himself for 1996.
The Perot factor: The secretary of state's office will not count votes for Ross Perot since he did not meet requirements as a write-in candidate, but exit polling by the Los Angeles Times and the television networks will gauge the extent of his support in both parties' primaries. Delegates at Stake: Democrats: 348 Republicans: 201
Population: 29,760,021 White: 57% Black: 7% Latino: 26% Asian: 9% Other: 1%
Party Affiliation: Republicans: 39% Democrats: 49% Other: 12%
Per Capita Income: California: $16,409 U.S.: $18,691 Unemployment: California: 8.0% U.S.: 7.2%
The Delegate Count: Needed for Dem. nomination: 2,145 Clinton: 2,060 Brown: 288 Needed for GOP nomination: 1,105 Bush: 1,414 Buchanan: 76
TODAY'S OTHER CONTESTS:
Except for a Republican contest next Tuesday in North Dakota, the primary season concludes with the votes today in California and the following states: Alabama Delegates: Democrats: 55 Republicans: 38 Population: 4,040,587 White: 73% Black: 25% Latino: 0.6% Other: 1%
Montana Delegates: Democrats: 16 Republicans: 20 Population: 799,065 White: 92% Black: 0.2% Latino: 2% Other: 5%
New Jersey Delegates: Democrats: 105 Republicans: 60 Population: 7,730,188 White: 74% Black: 13% Latino: 10% Other: 3%
New Mexico Delegates: Democrats: 25 Republicans: 25 Population: 1,515,069
White: 50% Black: 3% Latino: 38% Other: 10%
Delegates: Democrats: 151 Republicans: 83 Population: 10,847,115
White: 87% Black: 11% Latino: 1% Other: 1%
Percentages may not add up to 100 because of rounding.
Source: U.S. Census Bureau. Black Latinos counted under Latinos, not blacks