Elections

Donald Trump Sweeps Northeastern Primaries

Alex Pappas Political Reporter

Donald Trump swept all five states that voted Tuesday, pulling off wins in Maryland, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Delaware and Connecticut.

With 172 delegates up for grabs in five states, the New York businessman took home nearly all of the pledged ones, padding his delegate lead ahead of next week’s primary in Indiana.

Trump hovered around 60 percent in most of the states: In Connecticut, he won about 57.7 percent of the vote, picking up 28 delegates while his opponents nearly got any. In Delaware, Trump won 60.8 percent, earning 16 delegates. In Maryland, Trump got 54.4 percent and 35 delegates. In Pennsylvania, Trump won about 56.7 of the vote and 17 delegates.

In Rhode Island, Trump won with 63.6 percent of the vote, picking up 9 delegates. Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who came in second, while Texas Sen. [crscore]Ted Cruz[/crscore] picked up just 1 delegate.

According to the Associated Press delegate tracker, Trump now has 950 delegates, followed by Cruz’s 560 and Kasich’s 153. A candidate needs 1,237 — a majority of delegates to win — and with just weeks to go before the primary ends, Trump is down just 287.

Cruz and Kasich have no plans to let up, hoping Trump loses some upcoming states, most importantly Indiana and California. Under the scenario they envision, Trump won’t go into July’s Republican National Convention with a majority of delegates and the convention will be contested.

Yet for his part, in a victory speech from Trump Tower on Tuesday evening, Trump declared: “I consider myself the presumptive nominee, absolutely.”

The focus of the race now turns to Indiana, where Cruz struck a deal with Kasich to have it all to himself against Trump in return for not competing in Oregon and New Mexico. Cruz has two campaign events scheduled in Indianapolis on Tuesday, amid speculation that he could soon announce a running mate as a way to attract positive attention ahead of the crucial primary.

Meanwhile, Trump is set to appear at a rally Wednesday in the state with former Indiana Basketball coach Bobby Knight, who is expected to endorse Trump’s campaign.

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