Sen. Ted Cruz won a substantial victory over Donald Trump in Wisconsin’s Republican presidential primary Tuesday, narrowing the gap between the two candidates and dealing a blow to Trump’s chances of earning a majority of delegates before the Republican convention.
Initial results showed Cruz getting about half of the vote, while Trump trailed around with about 29 percent while Ohio Gov. John Kasich was in third with about 15 percent.
Trump had led Wisconsin in some polls conducted in January and February, but in March Cruz overtook him and almost all recent polls showed the Texas senator with a substantial advantage.
Wisconsin’s 42 delegates will be awarded on a winner-take-most basis. The winner of the statewide vote will receive 18 delegates, and then three delegates will be awarded to the winner of each of the state’s eight congressional districts. This system means Cruz will likely win all or almost all of the delegates. While winning a delegate majority is likely beyond reach for Cruz at this point, by winning Wisconsin he denies them to Trump, who needs to win about 500 of the remaining 924 delegates to carry the Republican nomination and avert a contested convention.
The win gives Cruz needed momentum, especially since the next six contests are all East Coast states that are expected to be friendly to Trump. Looming especially large is New York’s primary in two weeks, where Trump is polling with a big lead.
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