PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Democrat Bernie Sanders and Republican Ted Cruz came away with big wins in Wisconsin’s presidential primaries, but the upcoming New York primary is home turf for their parties’ front-runners.
When it comes to delegate count, Sanders has an uphill battle to reach Hillary Clinton. She and Republican Donald Trump are expected to do well in New York on April 19.
As Sanders took Wisconsin Tuesday night, he told supporters momentum will get the attention of superdelegates slated to back Clinton.
“Unless he takes some superdelegates away, it’s going to be a very difficult road for him to get to the nomination,” explained Eyewitness News Political Analyst Joe Fleming. “The math just is not there for him without pulling some of these superdelegates.”
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Fleming noted the difference between this campaign and Clinton’s last run for president, but said Sanders’ numbers and timing are against him.
“Eight years ago when Barack Obama started to take superdelegates away from Hillary Clinton, it happened fairly early in the campaign,” he explained. “The momentum changed very quickly. The delegates started to peel away from her. That has not happened this time.”
On the Republican side, the race is still split between three candidates: Trump, Cruz, and Kasich. Fleming highlighted the establishment’s growing support for Cruz, who walked away with Wisconsin when the stage was set for a Trump victory.
“The establishment finally got themselves together to back Ted Cruz,” Fleming added. “They may not love Ted Cruz, but they see him as the person to stop Donald Trump.”
We have a string of East Coast primaries approaching, including Rhode Island’s on April 26. Fleming said if Sanders takes New York, it could prompt those superdelegates to question their support for Clinton.