Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney won the Kentucky primary, according to the Associated Press, the first of two nomination contests held today.
Polls close later tonight in Arkansas with Romney favored to win. In an AP tally, Romney began the day with 992 delegates of the 1,144 needed to win the nomination at the Republican National Convention Aug. 27-30 in Tampa, Florida. A total of 75 delegates were at stake in today’s primaries.
The former Massachusetts governor may surpass the required number on May 29, when 152 delegates are awarded in the Texas primary. The presidential primaries end June 26 when Utah votes.
With 65 percent of precincts reporting in Kentucky, Romney had 67 percent of the vote, according to the AP. Representative Ron Paul of Texas, whose son Rand was elected to the Senate from Kentucky in 2010, had 12 percent, followed by former Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania with 9 percent and former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich with 6 percent.
The results in the Democratic primary underscored the political difficulties President Barack Obama faces in Kentucky, which he lost by 16 percentage points to Republican John McCain in 2008. With 65 percent of precincts reporting, Obama had 60 percent of the vote to 40 percent for an uncommitted slate of delegates.
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