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Sanders defeats Clinton, Cruz beats Trump in Utah
[WASHINGTON] Bernie Sanders soundly defeated Hillary Clinton in Utah's Democratic caucuses late Tuesday (March 23), bringing his campaign a much-needed boost as he seeks to disrupt Clinton's path to the party's presidential nomination.
US networks projected Mr Sanders was headed to a comprehensive victory in the western state, leading his rival by a whopping 50 percentage points in early results.
It was his first victory in the long nominations race since March 8, when the self-proclaimed democratic socialist won Michigan."Thank you to all those who caucused tonight in Utah!" Mr Sanders posted on Twitter.
Senator Ted Cruz handily defeated Republican frontrunner Donald Trump late Tuesday (March 23) in Utah's presidential caucuses, putting up a spirited challenge against the brash billionaire as they battle for their party's presidential nomination.
With a quarter of precincts reporting, NBC and CNN projected Mr Cruz the winner with about 70 per cent of the vote, with Ohio Governor John Kasich at 16 percent and Trump at 13 per cent.
Utah, whose population is more caucasian, has 33 delegates up for grabs.
Democrats were also voting Tuesday in a third western state, Idaho, where 23 of the party's delegates are in play. Should the unyielding Sanders fare well there, as expected, he could emerge even with or even slightly ahead of Ms Clinton in the delegate count for the night.
But it will do little to significantly slow Ms Clinton's march to the magic number of 2,383 delegates needed to secure the Democratic nomination outright.
Prior to Tuesday's votes, the former secretary of state had amassed 1,656 delegates compared to 877 for Sanders.
Republicans were also caucusing in the Pacific territory of American Samoa.