The five upcoming primary races on 26 April could nearly seal the nominations for party frontrunners Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Polls reveal the two are leading in all five states but also show the steady demise of Republican runner-up Ted Cruz. In states that are not winner-take-all, Ohio Governor John Kasich could take a few delegates home. However, it will not be nearly enough to put him in a competitive position.
In total, 118 Republican delegates and 384 Democrat delegates will be up for grabs on 26 April. Clinton leads Bernie Sanders with 1,428 pledge delegates to his 1,153. Her lead increases when superdelegates are counted, 1,941 to 1,191. Democrat candidates need 2,383 delegates to win the nomination. On the GOP side, Trump leads with 845 delegates, followed by Cruz with 559 and Kasich with 148. Republican candidates need 1,237 delegates for the nomination.
The first three primaries in Connecticut, Delaware and Maryland are broken down below, while the primaries in Pennsylvania and Rhode Island are discussed in Part 2 of our primary preview.
Connecticut will be yet another crucial state in the battle for delegates. The Constitution State will offer 55 delegates to Democrats and 28 delegates to Republicans. Polls will open earlier than all other 26 April primary states at 6am EDT/11am BST. Polls will close at 8pm EDT but voters already standing in line will be allowed to cast their votes. Voters will be able to register to vote in person but will need to provide proof of identity and residence.
Polling shows that Clinton and Trump are leading in Connecticut, although Clinton is barely ahead of her Vermont senator rival. A Quinnipiac University poll released 20 April shows Clinton ahead by nine points, 51% to 42%. Democratic delegates are awarded proportionally, so Clinton and Sanders will likely split the delegates.
Trump, however, has a more commanding lead, with Quinnipiac putting him ahead by 20 points. The bombastic real estate mogul hold 48% support, followed by Kasich with 28% and Cruz with 19%. Republican delegates are awarded in a winner-take-most system, which means Trump could take all the delegates but is definitely looking to take a majority of them.
Delaware will offer the least amount of delegates for both parties, with only 21 delegates available to Democrats and 16 available to Republicans. Polls will open at 7am EDT/12pm BST and will close at 8pm EDT. Voters who did not register to vote by 2 April will not be able to vote in the 26 April primary. Polling locations are available on the Office of the State Election Commissioner website.
There is very little polling information from the First State, but a recent Gravis poll concluded on 18 April reveals Clinton and Trump are in the lead in their respective parties. Clinton holds a minor lead over Sanders, coming ahead by just seven points, 45% to 38%. As is the case in most Democrat races, delegates are awarded proportionally, thus the two candidates may receive nearly equal amounts of delegates.
Meanwhile, the Gravis poll shows Trump has a commanding 37 point lead at 55%, with Kasich coming in with 18% and Cruz with 15%. Delaware is a winner-take-all state, which means Trump will likely go home with all 16 delegates.
Maryland will offer the second biggest number of delegates for Democrats and the largest number of delegates for Republicans on 26 April. Democrats will vie for 95 delegates, while Republicans fight for 38 delegates. Polls will open at 7am EDT/12pm BST and will close at 8pm EDT. Voters can find their polling locations by visiting the State Board of Elections website.
As is the case with most of the races on 26 April, both Clinton and Trump are ahead of their rivals with both candidates boasting of double digit leads. The latest Monmouth University poll shows Clinton in the lead by 25 points — 57% to Sanders' 32%. However, because Maryland awards its Democrat delegates on a proportional system, Sanders will likely take home some of the 95 delegates up for grabs.
On the GOP side, Trump leads with 14 points in the Public Policy Polling survey at 43%. He's followed by Kasich with 29% and Cruz with 24%. The Republican race is winner-take-all for delegate allocation, which means Trump could take home 38 delegates if the polling holds true.
Democrats and Republicans will face off again on 3 May in Indiana and 10 May in West Virginia. Republicans will also head to Nebraska on 10 May.