Posted: 11:38 pm Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016
By Jamie Dupree
All but clinching the Republican nomination for President, Donald Trump steamrolled his way to another victory in Indiana on Tuesday night, knocking his main rival out of the GOP race and setting up what could be a brutal election battle with Hillary Clinton in November.
Trump won all but five of Indiana’s 90 counties, as he finished with 53 percent of the vote, to just under 37 percent for Ted Cruz, as Trump won all 57 delegates at stake in the Hoosier State.
It was the seventh straight big primary win for Trump, as Cruz won only two delegates on the last three Tuesdays – and it was enough to force the Texas Senator out of the GOP race.
Just hours after Cruz bitterly attacked Trump, labeling him a ‘pathological liar’ and more, Cruz made no direct mention of Trump, and did not offer his congratulations for the Indiana win.
As the victor, Trump was able to be a bit more magnanimous, name-checking Cruz several times, and praising him as a worthy competitor – though a few hours earlier Trump had been pushing a story from a supermarket tabloid that linked Cruz’s father to Lee Harvey Oswald.
Trump’s call for unity is sure to fall flat with some conservatives, who immediately made clear that they are not budging on their refusal to support Trump in November.
“Reporters keep asking if Indiana changes anything for me,” said Sen. Ben Sasse (R-NE), who has repeatedly said he will not support either Trump or Clinton.
“The answer is simple: No,” Sasse wrote on Twitter.
But the Chairman of the Republican Party did not hesitate, as Reince Priebus swiftly moved to embrace Trump, and urged other Republicans to follow suit.
— Reince Priebus (@Reince) May 4, 2016
Twitter was also filled with conservative Republicans who were in a sense burning their GOP registration card, making clear that Trump won’t have the GOP fully supporting him.
I am no longer a Republican.
— Ben Howe (@BenHowe) May 4, 2016
But for all of those who say they won’t vote for Trump – I remember a very similar situation eight years ago – when many people said the Democrats were too badly split after the rough primary between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in 2008.
It didn’t turn out that way in November.
You gotta give Trump some credit, he laid waste to the most impressive field of GOP candidates in recent history.
— Nathan Gonzales (@nathanlgonzales) May 4, 2016