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Friday, May 17, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

‘Super Saturday’ Wins for Trump, Cruz, Sanders

(CN) - Donald Trump, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas, and Sen. Bernie Sanders, of Vermont each won two of their party's presidential nomination races Saturday, while former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton won one.

Cruz prevailed in Republican contests in Kansas and Maine. Trump won in close races in Louisiana and Kentucky where he underperformed polls showing him with double-digit leads earlier in the week.

Trump was more reserved than usual as he addressed supporters in West Palm Beach Saturday night, calling on Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida, who finished either third and fourth in the day's contests, to get out of the race.

"I want Ted one-on-one, okay," Trump said.

Rubio later said he has no intention of getting out of the race, and that his mediocre showing on Saturday was expected as the contests were in states he didn't poll well in.

As for the Democrats, Sanders won both the Kansas and Nebrasla Democratic caucuses, but Clinton was the runaway winner in the Louisiana Democratic primary, raking in 71.1 percent of the vote, compared to Sanders' 23.2 percent.

All told, there are 155 delegates at stake for the Republican candidates, and 126 delegates at stake for Sanders and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Staffers with a number of the campaigns have said this weekend could prove pivotal to their respective candidate's building momentum ahead of March 15, when several big states, including Florida and Ohio, will hold contests, the outcomes of which will be winner-take-all, in terms of delegates.

On Sunday, Rubio won the Republican presidential primary in Puerto Rico, securing 23 delegates. Trump came in second, and Cruz third.

Sanders won the Democratic presidential caucus Sunday night by a wide margin, giving him three wins in 24 hours.

Saturday's contests are the first to be held since 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney excoriated Trump, the current frontrunner for the Republican nomination, in a speech before students at the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics.

The attacks by Romney were widely considered the Republican establishment's response to what they see as the insurgent Trump's disturbing success in the race for the White House. It was followed by a remarkable Fox News debate in which the billionaire real estate developer talked about the size of his penis, and Rubio and Cruz tried to tear him to shreds both for his rash style and his policy positions.

Pundits will be looking at the outcomes of Saturday's race for any sign that the Trump juggernaut has peaked.

But as the results of the Kansas caucus began to roll in, Trump held a rally in Orlando, Fla. that was punctuated by protest, and the apparent debut of a "protestor cam" by the Trump campaign to show the action.

At the height of the fracas, Trump led a crowd of thousands in chanting "U-S-A, U-S-A," and enthused, "Aren't Trump rallies the best."

Also making analysis difficult is the fact most of the contests Saturday are closed caucuses, which Trump, and Clinton, the Democratic frontrunner, tend to do less well in. Closed caucuses preclude Independents or voters registered with a specific party from participating in the other's contest.

Elsewhere, Ted Cruz won the presidential straw poll at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, D.C.

According to NBC News, four in 10 conservative activists at the CPAC conference voted for Cruz. Rubio came in second, with the support of 30 percent of attendees; next was Trump, with 15 percent, and Kasich, with 8 percent.

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