Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and GOP front-runner Donald Trump won their respective primaries in Indiana on Tuesday night, with Sanders pulling out an unlikely feat and Trump forcing Ted Cruz to drop out of the race.
In a shock victory over Hillary Clinton, Sanders received 53 percent of the popular vote, according to the Associated Press. The upset in the Hoosier State was a much needed win for Sanders who’s trailing the former Secretary of State by a significant amount of delegates.
“The political revolution wins in Indiana! Thank you,” Sanders tweeted right after his win.
On the verge of being mathematically eliminated from the Democratic race, Sanders campaign was able to slow down Clinton’s momentum with Tuesday night’s win.
Prior to tonight’s contest, Clinton’s spokesman Brian Fallon suggested the state was a must-win for Sanders, who he said “spent millions of dollars” campaigning there. The state, with its majority-white population, “resembles very closely a lot of the states where he has had his biggest wins,” Fallon added, according to CNN.
Despite a string of losses to Clinton, Sanders was adamant in a news conference Sunday that he would not drop out of the race before the California primary on June 7. He said he faces “a tough road to climb but not an impossible road to climb” to win the nomination, and his win in Indiana certainly helps his ascent.
Meanwhile, Tuesday night held another crushing defeat for GOP hopeful Cruz, who had framed the contest as a make-or-break moment for his campaign.
According to AP, Cruz’ toughest opponent, Trump, won nearly 54 percent of the popular vote and had garnered 45 of the 57 delegates early in the night.
Taking to Twitter shortly after his win, Trump tweeted a simple message, thanking the people of Indiana.
“Thank you Indiana #Trump2016 #MakeAmericaGreatAgain,” the real-estate mogul wrote.
Last week in Greenwood, Indiana, the Texas senator declared that “we are focusing our resources intently on the state of Indiana,” and in Indianapolis, he said the Hoosier state’s voters would be the ones to decide “which path we should go down,” CNN reports.
And decide they did. Shortly after results from the primary were revealed, Cruz – who had recently announced former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina as his would-be vice presidential pick as a running mate – revealed in his concession speech that he was suspending his campaign for president, leaving Trump as the presumptive GOP nominee.
“@realDonaldTrump will be presumptive @GOP nominee, we all need to unite and focus on defeating @HillaryClinton #NeverClinton,” Republican Party Chairman Reince Priebus tweet following Cruz’s announcement.
Prior to leaving the race, Trump led the junior senator by a whopping 34 percentage points in the California, according to a new SurveyUSA poll.
The same poll places Clinton 19 points ahead of Sanders.