- REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
Donald Trump blew his own expectations – and most experts’ predictions – out of the water Tuesday night, winning a vast majority of the delegates up for grabs in New York’s Republican primary.
Early Wednesday morning, with 98% of precincts reporting, Trump had picked up than 60% of the vote and at least 89 of the state’s 95 delegates. Earlier in the day, Trump said that he would consider the night a victory if he took home 75 delegates.
And experts analyzing the results from individual congressional districts estimated the mogul could take home as many as 92 delegates.
The Associated Press had Trump winning at least 89 of the Empire State’s delegates by early Wednesday. Data-journalism website FiveThirtyEight projected that by the time all the votes were counted, Trump would win 91 delegates, beating Trump’s own expectations as well as those of many political observers.
Trump celebrated his big win with a raucous victory speech at New York City’s Trump Tower.
“This has been an incredible evening. It’s been an incredible day and week,” Trump said during the speech. “… You’re going to be very proud of this country very soon.”
Trump declared that Republicans “don’t have much of a race anymore.”
Even with this victory, however, Trump still has a long road ahead before he can lock down the Republican nomination for president. And the delegates Trump won in New York don’t necessarily ensure that he’ll be able to reach the 1,237 delegates necessary to secure the Republican nomination outright before the party’s convention in July.
Trump is battling his remaining GOP rivals, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich, for delegates. His New York win served as a bounce back from a 13-point loss to Cruz in Wisconsin, where Cruz outpaced Trump by 30 delegates.
Trump now leads the race with 845 delegates, according to The Associated Press. Cruz gained no ground and remained at 559 delegates. Kasich has 147. The Republican process moves on to contests next Tuesday in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Rhode Island, and Pennsylvania, all states considered favorable to the real-estate mogul.
Trump remains the current frontrunner for his party, but if Cruz and Kasich chip away in the delegate column, it’s possible that no candidate will reach the magic number before the convention.
In that case, many delegates who would be bound to Trump on the first ballot of convention voting could vote for whomever they want on subsequent ballots.