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Presumptive Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney cruised to easy victories in primaries in Indiana, North Carolinia and West Virginia Tuesday, padding his delegate count and bringing him closer than ever to the magic number needed to clinch the nomination by no later than the first week of June.
Romney won all three states by more than 60 percent — capturing almost 70 percent in West Virginia — handily defeating Ron Paul, the only remaining candidate in the race.
Tuesday’s victories gives Romney an estimated 919 delegates, according to figures compiled by the Republican National Committee, and puts Romney just 132 delegates away from the 1,144 needed to officially claim the nomination.
With California’s “winner-take-all” primary on June 5 all but certain to go to Romney, the west coast state’s 172 delegates will put him over the top if he does not capture the numbers we needs in the remaining May primaries.
“Mathematically, it’s impossible for Romney to lose the nomination,” GOP strategist Don Sandridge told Capitol Hill Blue Tuesday. “The primary is over.”
Don’t tell that to Texas Congressman Ron Paul’s small but vocal band of loyal supporters who continues to pursue a strategy of bank-room dealings and disruptive behavior in a delegate-hijacking campaigns aimed at caucus states. The RNC count puts Paul’s delegate count at 100 after Tuesday’s primaries and he continues to trail not only Romney but two delegates no longer in the race: Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich.
Currently, the delegate count stands at 919 for Romney, 263 for Santorum, 134 for Gingrich, 100 for Paul and 1 for Jon Huntsman. The number for unallocated delegates stands at 528.