A bullish Donald Trump had another convincing and successful night on Tuesday, securing wins in Mississippi, Michigan and Hawaii as the tycoon further pushed forward his dream of securing the Republican nomination.
With a majority of votes counted, Mr Trump emerged as a clear winner in the three states and was looking forward to increasing his delegate total. Meanwhile, Senator Ted Cruz was projected to have won Idaho with 43 points, with Mr Trump second on 28 points.
Marco Rubio was in third place in Idaho, one of a number of deeply disappointing results for the Florida senator who will now again be forced to defend his decision to stay in the race.
For the Democrats, Ms Clinton easily won Mississippi, with returns showing her leading Bernie Sanders 80-20 in the southern state.
The battle in Michigan was much closer for the Democrats. After a night of intense drama, with the numbers for the two candidates seemingly too close to call, the Vermont senator was declared winner, beating the former secretary of state 50-48.
In an eccentric, rambling speech in Jupiter, Florida, where he chose to display Trump-branded wine and steaks, the reality television star seized on his 13th and 14th victories and dismissed his critics, most notably former Republican nominee Mitt Romney, who has spent much of the last week leading a seemingly flailing effort to derail the tycoon’s White House run.
“Many people have called this a movement. Many people want to be involved,” said Mr Trump.
“I think it’s the single biggest story in politics today, what is happening at the polling booth. While the Democrats are down by 35 per cent, we are up. We are talking about millions of people.”
Celebrating his wins, he added: “There’s only one person who did well tonight and that was Donald Trump.”
Ms Clinton had gone into the Mississippi race with strong expectations after her success in South Carolina ten days ago, and several other southern states on last week’s Super Tuesday.
Her support among African American voters is considerable stronger than that of her Democratic rival, Mr Sanders.
Mr Trump looked set to win around 37 per cent of the votes in Michigan, with Ohio Governor John Kasich second with around 25 per cent. Mr Cruz was in third place on 24 per cent and Mr Rubio fourth with less than nine per cent.
In Mississippi, Mr Trump won around 48 per cent, with Mr Cruz on 36 points, Mr Kasich 8 per cent and Mr Rubio on around 5 per cent.
The biggest upset of the night was in Michigan where polls had Mr Sanders as far as 30 points behind Ms Clinton going into the contest. As it was, he won 50-48 and gave his campaign new life.
“I just want to thank the people of Michigan. We have repudiated the polls that said we were 25 points behind, we repudiated the pundits who said we were dead,” he said, speaking in Florida.
“Tonight means that the Bernie Sanders campaign, the people’s revolution, is strong in every part of the country.”
After Tuesday's results, Ms Clinton has accumulated 1,214 delegates and Mr Sanders 566, including superdelegates — members of Congress, governors and party officials who can support the candidate of their choice at the convention. Democrats need 2,383 delegates to win the nomination.
With Tuesday's wins, Mr Trump leads the Republican field with 446 delegates, followed by Mr Cruz with 347, Mr Rubio with 151 and Mr Kasich with 54. Winning the Republican nomination requires 1,237 delegates.Reuse content