Washington: Affirming his frontrunner status,
Mitt Romney cruised to victory in the Washington state
caucuses, his fourth straight win ahead of the 10-state `Super
Tuesday` contest for the party nomination for November
Presidential polls against incumbent Barack Obama.
With 60 per cent of precincts reporting in Washington,
Romney was well ahead with 37 per cent, while Ron Paul and
Rick Santorum, each of whom got 24 per cent, battled for the
second spot, US media reported. Newt Gingrich was a distant
fourth with 11 per cent.
In a statement, 64-year-old Romney, former Governor of
Massachusetts, said that his victory meant Washington state`s
voters "do not want a Washington insider in the White House."
"They want a conservative businessman who understands the
private sector and knows how to get the federal government out
of the way so that the economy can once again grow
vigorously," he said.
Romney`s victory follows his wins in his native state of
Michigan and Arizona on Tuesday, and before that in the
low-key Maine caucuses.
Now all eyes are on `Super Tuesday`, March 6, when
primaries are scheduled in 10 States. A major victory there
would almost seal Romney`s nomination, experts say.
Romney has so far won contests in seven states -- New
Hampshire, Florida, Nevada, Maine, Michigan, Arizona and
Washington -- in the race to secure Republican nomination for
the November Presidential polls against Democrat Obama.
Ahead of the Washington contest, Romney led in the overall
delegate count with 173. Santorum had 87, followed by Gingrich
with 33. Paul had 20.
It takes 1,144 delegates to clinch the nomination.