Baer: Hey, we're next in the race for prez!

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Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton: Winners in New York primary, although a recent poll found 68 percent of registered voters can't see themselves supporting Trump and 58 percent can't see themselves supporting Clinton.

AMONG THE once-unimaginable outcomes of Campaign 2016 - most prominently, party crashers Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders - is Pennsylvania's late-in-the-race presidential primary having importance.

Yet it does.

It could help cinch Hillary Clinton's claim on the Democratic nomination.

It could help push The Donald closer to his magic number and maybe avoid a feared-by-some/welcomed-by-others GOP clash in Cleveland.

Either way, when Pennsylvania votes next Tuesday, it'll be the biggest state in play that day. (Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland and Rhode Island also are voting.) And that makes it a big deal, in terms of delegates and momentum, for winners in both parties.

Candidates and surrogates are here or on their way. Rallies abound. TV is full of ads.

So to help you navigate any possible political chats over the next several days, here's what's what in the Keystone State.

Front-runners Clinton and Trump are poised to win. Both hold double-digit leads in averages of independent polls. Clinton won here in 2008, beating then-Sen. Obama by 9.2 percent.

But delegate collection is a separate question.

In '08, for example, Clinton's big win only gave her 12 more delegates than Obama. They split 158 committed delegates: Clinton 85, Obama 73.

Same can happen Tuesday. Clinton and Sanders could split 127 delegates listed on the ballot as committed to one or the other.

But Democrats also have 21 uncommitted "superdelegates" - folks like Sen. Casey, Gov. Wolf, Ed Rendell, who are Clintonites - and 62 party leaders and at-large delegates selected by Democratic state committee in June, for a total of 210 voting delegates at the convention in Philly in July.

(It's set-ups like this that make some say the game is party-rigged for Clinton.)

Republican delegate selection is simpler, potentially bad for Trump and possibly enormously important if convention voting goes past one ballot.

There are 71 Republican delegates. But assuming Trump wins Tuesday, his only certain take is 17 delegates - all party people and GOP officeholders committed to vote for the primary victor, but only on the first convention ballot.

The other 54 delegates, selected by GOP voters, are "unbound." At the convention, they can vote for whoever, whenever. Their names are on Tuesday's ballot but not with a presidential candidate's name.

(It's set-ups like this that make some say the game is party-rigged for anybody but Trump.)

Tedious, I know, but part of the madness.

Speaking of which, how crazy is it that national polling suggests voters are more likely to back candidates currently losing than those who are leading?

The latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal Survey says 68 percent of registered voters can't see themselves supporting Trump; 58 percent can't see themselves supporting Clinton.

And the only candidates with positive ratings are Sanders and John Kasich.

Go figure.

Also, state data suggest Republicans here are more excited than Democrats.

Latest registration figures show 61,543 Democrats switched to Republican since January compared with 19,593 Republicans switching to Democratic; and, since November, GOP registration grew by 145,700 compared with 89,245 for Democrats.

So Pennsylvania seems ready to help seal the deal for candidates a majority of American voters say they can't support. And Pennsylvania Republicans are more enthusiastic than Democrats to do so.

What a country. What a state. What a steaming mess.

baerj@phillynews.com

Blog: ph.ly/BaerGrowls

Columns: ph.ly/JohnBaer