Decks cleared for Trump as Ted Cruz pulls out of race

RSTV Bureau
New York  : Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is joined by his wife Melania, right, daughter Ivanka, left, and son Eric, background second from left, as he speaks during a primary night news conference, Tuesday, May 3, 2016, in New York. AP/PTI

New York : Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is joined by his wife Melania, right, daughter Ivanka, left, and son Eric, background second from left, as he speaks during a primary night news conference, Tuesday, May 3, 2016, in New York. AP/PTI

Donald Trump has virtually sealed his Republican presidential nomination with a big win in Indiana, which forced his rival Ted Cruz to drop out of the race. Republican party declared him the presumptive nominee for the party.

Trump is likely to set up clash in November with Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton, who surprisingly lost the Indiana primary to Bernie Sanders.

However, Clinton’s defeat in Indiana hasn’t dented her chances in the Democratic Presidential nomination race much.

After Trump’s win, the Republican National Committee (RNC) chairman Reince Priebus said that Trump is the presumptive nominee.

“I am honoured to be the presumptive nominee for the Republican Party. It is time to unite our party and defeat Hillary Clinton,” Trump said in a message to his supporters after winning the Indiana primary.

Trump now needs less than 200 delegates to reach the magical figure of 1,237 delegates to become the Republican presidential nominee still faces opposition from Ohio Governor John Kasich, who has less than 200 delegates.

Cruz, who had called Trump a “pathological liar” and a “narcissist”, announced his decision to drop out of the race even when the counting of votes was still on.

“We are going to make America great again,” Trump said in his victory speech.

“We are going after Hillary Clinton. She will not be a great president. She will not be a good president. She would be a poor president. She does not understand trade,” Trump said as he hit out on Clinton at his campaign headquarters in New York.

Trump again spoke about bringing back jobs and warned US companies with “consequences” if they moved out of the country.

With 96 per cent of the votes counted, Trump won 53.2 per cent, Cruz got 36.7 per cent while Kasich managed only 7.6 per cent.

On the Democratic side, with 97 per cent of the votes counted, Sanders eked out a win after getting 52.5 per cent votes to Clinton’s 47.5 per cent.

The New York based real estate mogul’s victory has been hailed by many as an extraordinary moment in American political history. He joined politics about 10 months ago and was not even a registered Republican until April 2012.

(With inputs from agencies)