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Trump Clinches GOP Nomination

Donald Trump officially clinched the GOP on Thursday after he reached the 1,237 delegates plateau.

The Hill reports:

The Associated Press first reported Thursday that Trump hit 1,237 delegates — the magic number that gives him a majority — after a small number of unbound party delegates that told the news service that they would support him.

Trump has been the only remaining GOP candidate in the race since early this month, when rivals Ted Cruz and John Kasich dropped out.

The presumptive nominee had been very close to clinching the nomination for a little over a week, needing fewer than 100 more delegates. The current count from multiple news organizations puts Trump at 1,238.

The newly pledged unbound delegates include Oklahoma Republican Party Chairwoman Pam Pollard, who told the AP that Trump “has touched a part of our electorate that doesn’t like where our country is.”

Trump launched his outsider campaign on June 16 last year and knocked off 16 GOP rivals in his bid to secure the nomination. He has since moved to shore up support among Republicans, but deep reservations remain in parts of the party given the candidate’s penchant for jabbing at critics.

The businessman swiped at New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez (R) on Tuesday night during a rally in her home state, calling on her to do a better job. A slew of former GOP rivals, such as Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush and Scott Walker, came to the defense of the country’s first Latina governor.

Some delegates have offered only tepid support for Trump. Pennsylvania delegate Cameron Linton told the AP that because Trump won the state’s primary, he’ll support him on the first ballot at the Republican National Convention in July. But, he said, he wouldn’t vote for Trump on a second ballot.

“He’s ridiculous. There’s no other way to say it,” Linton said.

Still, “leadership is leadership,” said Colorado GOP Chairman Steve House, another unbound delegate who confirmed his support on Thursday.

“If he can surround himself with the political talent, I think he will be fine,” House said.

Trump stood at the top of polls since launching his bid, and his penchant for jabbing his rivals — labeling them “low energy” Jeb Bush, “little Marco” Rubio and “Lyin’ Ted” Cruz — helped the celebrity businessman dominate the news almost constantly.

He also drew global attention and backlash for his many controversial remarks, such as proposing in December to temporarily ban Muslims from entering the United States and for not more forcefully disavowing support from white supremacists.

Violent protests have erupted at some of Trump’s rallies across the country, with police breaking up crowds in Chicago and, as recently as Tuesday night, Albuquerque, N.M. Physical altercations inside many of Trump’s rallies were also televised.

His success stood in stark contrast to the far less crowded Democratic race, which at its peak only had six contenders and has been contested in recent months by longtime front-runner Hillary Clinton and challenger Bernie Sanders.

Clinton has recently shifted her focus toward the likely match-up with Trump in November, and this week she lambasted the businessman for saying he looked forward to buying up property at low prices ahead of the 2008 housing market crash.

Trump, meanwhile, he returned fire, going after her use of a personal server while serving as secretary of State in the Obama administration and highlighting assault allegations against her husband, as well as entertaining conspiracy theories surrounding the suicide of former Bill Clinton aide Vince Foster.

Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Flickr.

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