WASHINGTON (AP/CBS) - Mitt Romney has won the Indiana, North Carolina and West Virginia presidential primaries.
The trio is certain to push Romney closer to the 1,144 delegates he needs to clinch the GOP nomination, handing him 100 or so delegates of the 288 he still needs.
None of the outcomes is a surprise. Romney faces no serious challenge to the Republican nomination.
Former rival Newt Gingrich dropped his bid for the presidency last week, after announcing the prior week that he would be giving up his White House hopes. Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum gave up his run for the White House last month. Santorum endorsed Romney late Monday night in an email to supporters.
Texas Rep. Ron Paul, who has thus far garnered an estimated 92 delegates, remains in the race.
Even the candidate himself is essentially ignoring Tuesday's primaries. Romney has been spending the day campaigning in Michigan, where he castigated President Barack Obama as an "old-school liberal" whose policies would take the country backward.
The two men are in a tight race and likely to engage in a fierce fight for the White House, according to the latest polls.
In a Gallup/USA Today poll of 12 swing states released this week, Mr. Obama edged out Romney 47 percent to 45 percent. The result is within the poll's four-point margin of error and closer than Gallup's last swing state poll from March, when Mr. Obama held a nine-point lead.
On the critical issue of the economy, Romney has the advantage: In a direct comparison, 47 percent said Romney would do a better job managing the economy, while 44 percent said Mr. Obama would. As many as 60 percent said Romney would do a good job or very good job as president handling the economy over the next four years, while 52 percent said the same about Mr. Obama.
(The Associated Press/CBS News.)