After nearly a year of hard-fought campaigns, the race for the Republican and Democratic parties’ nominations for president is drawing to a close. With no one left in the Republican field, Donald Trump is the party’s only contender, while Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders continue to fight for the Democratic Party ticket. Both parties will hold their national conventions this July, during which each party will officially nominate their respective candidates for the presidency.
Cruz and Kasich drop out, Trump becomes presumptive Republican nominee
Following a devastating loss in the Indiana primary election, Texas Senator Ted Cruz dropped out of the race for the Republican nomination for president, leaving Donald Trump as the presumptive nominee. Shortly after Mr. Cruz's announcement, the Republican Party Chairman, Reince Priebus, officially confirmed Mr. Trump's status as the presumptive nominee.
In the winner-take-all contest, Mr. Trump gained all 57 delegates from Indiana, bringing his total delegate count to 1,047. In order to secure the nomination, he needs 1,237 delegates, which he will surely win now that Mr. Cruz has withdrawn from the race.
On Wednesday afternoon, Ohio Governor John Kasich followed suit and announced that he suspended his campaign, leaving Mr. Trump as the party’s sole candidate.
The ascendancy of Mr. Trump has shocked the Republican Party establishment, who has been doing everything in its power to stop him from winning the party’s nomination. Establishment members have been skeptical of Mr. Trump’s lack of political experience and his controversial statements. This anti-Trump sentiment within the Republican Party culminated in the “Never Trump” movement, a multimillion-dollar campaign aimed at nominating one of Mr. Trump’s rivals.
Despite its efforts, the Republican Party establishment is now faced with little choice but to support their party’s nominee.
Sanders wins Indiana, still trails Clinton
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders won the Indiana primary receiving 42 delegates to Hillary Clinton’s 36.
Mr. Sanders’ victory did little to cut into Mrs. Clinton’s lead, who holds 2,202 delegates to the Vermont senator’s 1,400 including the so-called Super Delegates.
While Mrs. Clinton is almost assured to win the Democratic Party’s nomination, Mr. Sanders’ campaign has provided the Clinton camp with a greater challenge than it expected.
As a 74-year-old, self-proclaimed democratic socialist from the small state of Vermont, Mr. Sanders was earlier viewed as a fringe candidate that would exit the race early, paving the way for a Clinton nomination. But his grassroots, progressive campaign has gained traction over the past few months and has led him to victories in states such as Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota, and Washington.
Regardless, Mrs. Clinton is now focusing her attention on Mr. Trump as the two prepare to battle for the presidency in the coming months.