White House candidates fight for votes in five states

Published: Saturday 5th March 2016 by The News Editor

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The remaining Republican and Democratic candidates in the race for the White House are fighting for votes in five states that will be crucial to their hopes.

The Republicans are now down to a quartet after retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson formally ended his campaign, after announcing the day after the Super Tuesday contests that he would quit.

Donald Trump, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and John Kasich are competing in Maine, Kansas, Kentucky and Louisiana on Saturday.

Meanwhile Democrats Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are vying for support in Nebraska, Kansas and Louisiana.

Mr Trump’s rivals, who have tried just about everything to disrupt his juggernaut, can take comfort from the rules for Saturday’s round of voting, as t hey make it easier for candidates to claim a share of the delegates than was true in some earlier contests.

Republican establishment figures are frantically looking for a way to stop Mr Trump, perhaps at a contested convention if none of the candidates can achieve the 1,237 delegates needed to guarantee the nomination.

Going into Saturday’s voting, Mr Trump led the field with 329 delegates. Mr Cruz had 231, Mr Rubio 110 and Mr Kasich 25. In all, 155 Republican delegates are at stake in Saturday’s races.

Mrs Clinton is farther along than Mr Trump on the march to her party’s nomination, outpacing Mr Sanders with 1,066 delegates to his 432. It takes 2,383 delegates to win the Democratic race. There are 109 at stake on Saturday.

Mr Trump added a last-minute rally in Wichita, Kansas, to his Saturday morning schedule and Mr Cruz planned to stop in Kansas on caucus day, too, a day after Mr Rubio visited the state.

Mr Trump’s decision to skip an appearance at a conference sponsored by the American Conservative Union in the Washington area angered the group, who tweeted that it “sends a clear message to conservatives”.

The billionaire businessman’s rivals have been increasingly questioning his commitment to conservative policies, painting his promise to be flexible on issues as a giant red flag.

“Donald is telling us he will betray us on everything he’s campaigned on,” Mr Cruz told voters in Maine.

In Louisiana, Mrs Clinton was hoping that strong support from the state’s black population will give her a boost.

Both Democrats have campaigned heavily in Nebraska and saturated the state with adverts.

Mr Sanders held a pre-caucus rally in Kansas’ liberal bastion of Lawrence hoping to attract voters.

Published: Saturday 5th March 2016 by The News Editor

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