Voting opened Tuesday in the most raucous nominating contest of an already wild campaign season, making New York the centrepiece for both delegates and bragging rights that were expected to strengthen the trajectory of the two front-runners.
Polls show Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton ahead by double-digit margins in a state with vastly diverse backdrops from Wall Street to struggling rust belt cities upstate.
Donald Trump’s presidential campaign is rocking his hometown of New York City as he is poised for a thumping victory in the state’s primary on Tuesday.
Trump is dominating the polls with a double-digit lead over his rivals, Ted Cruz and John Kasich. The billionaire could pick up close to all of the 95 delegates at stake in the state, where he is especially popular among voters in upstate and rural regions.
Born in Queens, Trump himself has long been a fixture of New York City. For decades, Trump’s playboy lifestyle and multiple weddings and divorces were favourite features in the city’s tabloids. Trump flirted in the past with running for New York City mayor.
He has garnered the support of at least one prominent local Republican — former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who said he plans to vote for his long-time friend.
But other Republican leaders have steered clear. Former Gov. George Pataki, who briefly ran for president this cycle, endorsed Kasich; Michael Bloomberg, the Democrat-turned-Republican-turned-independent former mayor has denounced Trump aggressively and considered running as an independent against him.
His name pops up in real estate developments around New York. Along the Hudson River and parallel to the West Side Highway sit a row of buildings that make up Trump Place — luxury condominiums that stretch from 59th Street to 72nd Street. The Trump name is featured on numerous other buildings across the city, including Trump Parch, Trump Soho New York and Trump World Tower.
The former secretary of state, first lady and New York senator leads the polls by double digits over her Brooklyn-born challenger, Bernie Sanders, even if nationwide surveys put them neck and neck.
Clinton has done well in earlier closed primary contests during this election season, which suggests she has an advantage heading into Tuesday’s race in New York.
Sanders, who has done very well among independents who lean toward the Democratic Party, may face a disadvantage Tuesday if registered Democrats turn out to vote in high numbers and independents were unable to change their affiliation before the deadline.
For Clinton, a victory would give her a boost of momentum after a blitz of recent primary and caucus wins by rival Sanders. Unlike Trump, Clinton is so far ahead in the delegate count that it is close to impossible for Sanders to catch up.