Donald Trump decisively won his home state of New York in Tuesday’s Republican presidential primary, defeating his chief competitor, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who came in third place behind Ohio Gov. John Kasich.
The New York businessman is on track to surpass 50 percent of the vote in the state and in congressional districts to trigger a winner-take all scenario and deprive his opponents of delegates.
Though a contested convention remains possible, Trump tried to project himself as the likely nominee in his celebratory speech from Trump Tower, saying: “Senator Cruz is just about mathematically eliminated.”
After the race was called, Trump thanked the state on social media.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 20, 2016
Heading into Tuesday’s contest, Trump repeatedly took shots at Cruz for his infamous dismissal of “New York values” in a debate earlier this year.
“We love this city,” Trump told reporters on Monday. “You look at the other folks that are running – they couldn’t care less about New York. We do care about New York. We care about New York a lot. We care about New York values.”
The race now continues in the Northeast, with Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island voting next Tuesday.
Though Kasich remains distantly behind Trump and Cruz in the delegate race, Kasich’s chief strategist John Weaver wrote in a memo released Tuesday: “The next seven days are absolutely critical and every Republican in the country who wants an open convention and to win the White House should rally around Gov. Kasich in the upcoming April 26 states. It’s now or never to stop Trump and save the Republican Party.”