One thing that is striking me about national poling on the GOP presidential race is the lack of a front-runner. Of the five polls noted here at Real Clear Politics, the best any candidate is doing is Marco Rubio winning one with 13%. 10% has tied for the lead in some national polls.
That could create an interesting problem if this keeps up. States with proportional allocations of delegates often have a floor needed to get delegates, generally 15%. Michigan allocates their delegates winner-take-all per congressional district but proportional for state-wide delegates. However, you have to have 15% to be in the mix for those delegates, so a candidate that wins a ten-way race with 16% could get all the state-level delegates if no one else broke 15%.
Odder still would be the case where no-one got 15%. If the winner only clocked in at 13%, it would seem that all the delegates would be unpledged and the delegate-selection process would be political trench warfare with each faction looking get their folks heading to the convention.
Mississippi has that 15% needed rule both for state and district delegates. If things are rather spread out like they are now, they could wind up having all their delegates go unpledged. Granted, candidates might well have stronger parts of the state than others, so getting 15% in a district would be more common than getting 15% statewide, but a strong seven or eight way race might well see places where no one breaks 15%.
Latinas look forward to getting to 15 for their big party. So might presidential wannabes.
Of course, the cast-of-thousands will get trimmed by the time voting starts next year, as some of the marginal candidates opt to pack it in, but when SpongeBob is only 10% off the lead (don't ask about his spawning certificate, please, it's not nice) anything can happen. If we have a pack of seven very plausible candidates (right now Bush, Carson, Cruz, Huckabee, Paul, Rubio, and Walker have gusts in double digits) and a few others like Fiorina, Santorum and (heaven help us) Trump who are a boomlet away from joining them, seeing the winner in the tweens isn't that far fetched.