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Indiana primaries: Trump clinches win, Cruz quits; Clinton loses to Sanders

FINAL RESULT: Trump wins with 53% and forces Cruz out; Sanders beats Clinton by five-point margin.

Nevil Gibson
Wed, 04 May 2016

For once, everyone agrees with Donald Trump.

“Honestly, if we win Indiana, it’s over,” he says. “They’re finished. They’re done,” referring to his rivals.

In today's primary, he clinched an easy win with a majority 53% of Republican voters.

Not surprisingly, Ted Cruz has quit the race after failing to break Mr Trump's hold. 

This should deliver all 57 delegates to Mr Trump, who had a 15-point lead over Mr Cruz in public opinion polls leading into the ballot.

Mr Cruz's departure leaves open the path to the 1237 delegates Mr Trump needs to secure the Republican preidential nomination.

The remaining primaries, including California on June 7, will now be formalities.

Mr Trump had already accumulated 996 delegates for the July convention in Cleveland, while Mr Cruz had 565 and third-placed candidate John Kasich 153.

Mr Kasich was not actively seeking delegates in Indiana after making an agreement with Mr Cruz in a bid to head off Mr Trump.

However, the tactic appears to have backfired and bolstered Mr Trump’s support as well as ending Mr Cruz's campaign.

Mr Kasich hasn't indicated his future plans but he appears to have only a remote chance of preventing a Trump candidacy.

Clinton loses to Sanders in close vote
In the Democratic primary, Hillary Clinton failed to deliver a narrow four-point lead over Bernie Sanders that was indicated in public opinion polling.

She lost her early lead after 20% of the votes were counted and at the finish trailed Mr Sanders by a five-point margin.

However, she still has a wide delegate margin over Mr Sanders, if superdelegates are included.

Mr Sanders shows no sign of throwing in the towel, saying the nominating process is “rigged” in favour of the political establishment.

He actively campaigned in Indiana while Mrs Clinton, who spent little time and few resources there, had already moved on to West Virginia and Kentucky, which vote on May 10 and 17, respectively.

Indiana is a "rust belt" state lying between Ohio and Kentucky in the east and Illinois to the west.  While the state has some higher income and educated urban concentrations around the capital, Indianapolis, and a handful of industrial cities, the population is mainly rural and non-Hispanic white ("prairie populists").

The former group has favoured Mr Cruz and Mrs Clinton in other states, while Messrs Trump and Sanders have strong support from the latter group.

Indiana also has a large number of evangelicals, who in this region have come out for Mr Trump rather than Mr Cruz's Texan brand of social conservatism.

INDIANA (100% counted)

Cruz 36.6%
Kasich 7.6%
• Trump 53.2% 51 delegates

Clinton 47.7% 37 delegates
• Sanders 52.4% 43 delegates

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Nevil Gibson
Wed, 04 May 2016
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Indiana primaries: Trump clinches win, Cruz quits; Clinton loses to Sanders