Washington: Senator Ted Cruz has announced to drop out of the presidential race following a devastating defeat in the Indiana GOP primary, paving a clear pathway for his rival Donald Trump to be the presidential nominee of the Republican party for the November general elections in the US.
Cruz, who was earlier engaged in a bitter and nasty war of words with Trump, announced his decision to drop out of the race even when the counting of votes were still going in Indiana on Tuesday.
With two-thirds of the votes being counted, the Texas Senator had received 36 per cent of the votes against Trump's 51.4 per cent. Major news networks had projected Trump as the winner.
Trump, who now needs less than 200 delegates to reach the magical figure of 1,237 delegates to become the GOP presidential nominee still faces opposition from Governor John Kasich of Ohio, who with less than 200 delegates yesterday said he was not dropping out of the race. However, he has no path to the nomination.
"Tonight, I am sorry to say it appears that the path has been foreclosed ... the voters chose another path. So with a heavy heart, with boundless optimism for the future of the nation, we are suspending our campaign. I am not suspending our fight to liberty... our movement would continue," Cruz told his supporters in Indianapolis.
Standing by his side were his vice presidential partner Carly Fiorina, his parents, wife and children.
However, in his speech, Cruz neither congratulated Trump nor endorsed him. Hours before the primary results, the two were engaged in a nasty exchange of words.
Cruz called Trump an "utterly amoral", "bully", "narcissist" and "pathological liar", Trump returned favours immediately alleging that the Texas Senator is desperate and trying to save his failing campaign.