--AFTER 5 STATE SWEEP, TRUMP TURNS HIS ATTENTION TO CLINTON: Fresh off his resounding wins last night, GOP front-runner Donald Trump appears to be moving past the "leftover" Republican candidates -- as he calls them -- and is looking ahead to a possible general election matchup with Hillary Clinton, ABC’s JOHN SANTUCCI reports. "She is a flawed candidate. She is a candidate that, frankly, is I think...she's not going to do very well in the election and I look forward to showing that," Trump told ABC’s GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS in an interview on "GMA." "I mean, Bernie Sanders himself said she has bad judgment. That's a big statement to make. That's a statement worse than many of the statements I've made against people I'm running against," Trump continued. http://abcn.ws/1qTghIG
--HAPPENING TODAY: @jonkarl: Cruz is expected to make a big announcement today - could he be naming Fiorina as his runningmate?
--WHAT TRUMP IS SAYING: Trump argued on Tuesday night that delegates have a "moral obligation" to support him on the first ballot as the winner of the state's popular vote. "There's a moral obligation, at least on the first round, to support the person that won," Trump said in a victory speech on Tuesday night. "Now, we didn't only win, we won big."
--CLINTON ENCOURAGES 'THOUGHTFUL' REPUBLICANS TO EMBRACE HER: This could potentially mark the very beginning of a Republican for Hillary movement -- or so she may hope, ABC’s LIZ KREUTZ notes. Clinton made one comment in her speech last night in Philadelphia that may suggest she's starting a push to woo Republicans (specifically those more moderate ones who are not supporters of Trump or Cruz). During her remarks, she called on anyone who is a Democrat, an independent or a “thoughtful Republican” to consider her message and campaign. "So my friends, if you are a Democrat, an independent or a thoughtful Republican, you know their approach is not going to build an America where we increase opportunity or decrease inequality,” she said. "So instead of letting them take us backwards, we want America to be in the future business. That's why I want you to keep imagining a tomorrow where instead of building walls, we're breaking down barriers.”
EXIT POLL ANALYSIS: TRUMP CRUISES THE I-95 PRIMARIES; CLINTON PADS HER DELEGATE LEAD. Donald Trump cruised through the I-95 primaries, pulling economic discontent, his outsider status and pushback against other groups into a yet-more potent political package. In the Democratic race, Hillary Clinton relied on her customary strengths – plus a boost from perceived inevitability – to pad her delegate lead. Exit poll results were analyzed for ABC News by Langer Research Associates. ABC’s GARY LANGER, GREGORY HOLYK, CHAD KIEWIET DE JONGE have more: http://abcn.ws/1SzrYvb
--TRUMP DOMINATED AGAINST OPPONENTS WHO NEVER HAD MUCH OF A CHANCE: Nearly six in 10 voters in Pennsylvania, Maryland and Connecticut – the states where exit polls were conducted – made up their minds more than a month ago, setting or matching new highs. He won a remarkable two-thirds of their votes, even better than his usual share of early deciders, about half. Ted Cruz and John Kasich struggled to gain votes even in their top support groups. And their backers paled in enthusiasm compared with Trump’s. http://abcn.ws/1SzrYvb
--THE DEMOCRATIC RESULTS WERE CONVINCING BUT LESS OVERPOWERING: Clinton’s big win was in Maryland, where she reached beyond women and racial and ethnic minorities, winning whites and men by record margins in a non-Southern primary. She won more typically in Pennsylvania and narrowly in Connecticut; there Bernie Sanders ran well with men, beat his usual margin among voters younger than 45 and found particular resonance with Wall Street critics. http://abcn.ws/1SzrYvb
ALSO HAPPENING TODAY: TRUMP TO DELIVER MAJOR FOREIGN POLICY SPEECH. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is set to deliver his second policy-focused speech of the campaign later today in Washington, D.C. On the heels of a five-state sweep of primaries on Tuesday night, Trump said in accepting his wins that he will talk about economic and security issues during his speech. “Our military is totally depleted, we have to build it up,” Trump said as he was surrounded by family, friends and colleagues in New York. Trump added that the speech “will not be the Trump doctrine” and repeated as he’s said before that he will be “flexible” because "the world changes." Sources tell ABC News the real estate mogul's campaign has brought on several policy experts to aide in the composition of today's remarks. More from ABC’s JOHN SANTUCCI and CANDACE SMITH: http://abcn.ws/1MYK2C9
YESTERDAY ON THE TRAIL with ABC’s VERONICA STRACQUALURSI and PAOLA CHAVEZ
PRIMARY RESULTS: TRUMP SWEEPS ALL 5 STATES. ABC’s MEGHAN KENEALLY has more on the results of the Republican primaries. http://abcn.ws/1Sz8g2M ABC’s VERONICA STRACQUALURSI has more on the results of the Democratic primaries. http://abcn.ws/234Fw6Y
ANALYSIS -- ABC’s RICK KLEIN: “Donald Trump may not be sick of winning just yet. But despite a newfound partnership, his rivals are getting sick enough of losing right about now. Trump consolidated his hold on the Democratic nomination with a clean sweep of northeastern states on Tuesday, where he outperformed polling and expectations. His path to a majority of delegates, while still uncertain and dependent on the next states up, has never been more clear of obstacles. Prominent among the obstacles that are falling away are his rivals. If this is what collusion looks like, Trump will take another helping. Neither Ted Cruz nor John Kasich came close to matching Trump’s strength in the five states voting. Cruz’s fade was a particular sting given the dynamics of the race coming in to last week’s voting in New York. Kasich’s promise of strength in the northeast seems like a distant memory. The awkward alliance announced this week by Cruz and Kasich looks particularly weak in light of these results. All eyes will turn to Indiana, where the stop-Trump forces have marshaled – though even slowing Trump there may not be enough. http://abcn.ws/24iLzqX
TRUMP: ‘I CONSIDER MYSELF THE PRESUMPTIVE NOMINEE.’ Donald Trump is viewing his GOP primary victories last night as being about more than just the five states that voted. "I consider myself the presumptive nominee," Trump said during his victory press conference Tuesday night, ABC’s MEGHAN KENEALLY. "This is a far bigger win than we expected," he added. "This one's a diverse victory.... Every one of them is conclusive and every state is so different," Trump said of his wins. http://abcn.ws/1SqW07S
MOVING CLOSER TO DEMOCRATIC NOMINATION, CLINTON VOWS TO ‘UNIFY OUR PARTY.’ Hillary Clinton on Tuesday night pledged to unify the Democratic party and create a country where "love trumps hate," as she celebrated her wins -- a sign she's essentially preparing to be her party’s presidential nominee, ABC’s LIZ KREUTZ reports. The Democratic front-runner’s vow to unify the party seemed designed to send a message to her opponent, Bernie Sanders, and his supporters. "Now, with your help we're going to come back to Philadelphia for the Democratic National Convention with the most votes and the most pledged delegates," she said at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in downtown Philadelphia, a venue where some convention events are expected to be held. "We will unify our party to win this election and build an America where we can all rise together, an America where we lift each other up instead of tearing each other down." http://abcn.ws/1VBa1SP
SANDERS PUSHES ON TO WEST VIRGINIA. Despite his losses, Bernie Sanders on Tuesday night predicted a win in West Virginia, which holds its primary May 10, and cast himself as the best candidate to defeat GOP front-runner Donald Trump in November. “As of today we have now won 16 primaries and caucuses all over this country,” Sanders said at a rally in Huntington, West Virginia. “And with your help we're going to win here in West Virginia.” ABC’s VERONICA STRACQUALURSI has more. http://abcn.ws/1SIUYmw
NOTED: SANDERS ‘MOVEMENT’ SEES PROGRESSIVES PLANNING NEXT STEP. When asked about his post-primary plans, if Hillary Clinton clinches the Democratic nomination for president, Bernie Sanders was quick to tell ABC News in Rome last week that he would go back to his day job as a U.S. senator from Vermont. But several of the advocacy groups backing his campaign have begun strategizing about the next phase of what many of them view as Sanders’ “political revolution.” People for Bernie, a grassroots organization, and National Nurses United, one of Sanders’ earliest and most visible union endorsers, have been working in tandem to plan a conference bringing Sanders’ supporters and progressive groups together after the final votes in the Democratic Party primary. The event, titled “The People’s Summit,” has been scheduled for late-June in Chicago, just days after the final primary contest. ABC’s MARYALICE PARKS has more. http://abcn.ws/1VA6mES
KASICH LARGELY MISSING FROM OFFICIAL PAMPHLET SENT TO 1.8M OREGON HOUSEHOLDS. Ohio Gov. John Kasich faces a major hurdle in Oregon's upcoming primary: His photo and biography are missing from an official voter pamphlet mailed last week to about 1.8 million Oregon households. The omission from the Voters’ Pamphlet, an informational document mailed by the Oregon secretary of state’s office to every Oregon household, may prove significant in a state where voters cast their ballots exclusively by mail. Cruz and Trump have a full page to themselves, split down the middle, showing their photos, biographical information and a statement from each one. ABC’s BEN GITTLESON has more. http://abcn.ws/1SI3YIu
NOTED: KASICH’S MOST INTERESTING ENDORSEMENTS. While Kasich may be trailing his remaining rivals running for the Republican presidential nomination in delegates and votes, he has amassed a wide array of unique endorsements – from astronauts to football coaches and even a Terminator. http://abcn.ws/1NPIwNq
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
SCOTT WALKER NAMED A WISCONSIN DELEGATE TO GOP CONVENTION. It’s certainly not the path to the Republican presidential convention that Wisconsin Gov Scott Walker originally envisioned for himself, but ABC’s JORDYN PHELPS notes that he will be going to the 2016 convention in Cleveland as one of Wisconsin’s 18 at-large delegates. As an at-large delegate, Walker will be bound to vote for Sen Ted Cruz on the first ballot – an easy vote, considering that he endorsed Cruz prior to his primary victory in Wisconsin. Walker’s wife, First Lady Tonette Walker, and former Gov. Tommy Thompson will also serve as delegates for the state. On whether Walker would allow his name to be presented at a contested convention as a so-called "white knight" candidate, Walker has previously stopped short of categorically ruling out the possibility and instead told “Townhall” in a recent interview that he believes “no one will have enough delegates on the first ballot, and I believe that either on the second or the third at the latest, I believe that Ted Cruz will win.”
@politicalwire: Most Americans Think Nominating System Is Rigged https://politicalwire.com/2016/04/27/most-americans-think-nominating-system-is-rigged/ … via @politicalwire
@joshtpm: Which is more likely: Trump turns out more white voters than Romney did in 2012; or that Clinton turns out more minority voters than Obama.
@DonaldJTrumpJr: Wow w/ some big states left to go @realDonaldTrump already passes Romney popular vote total. GOP record next. Time to listen to the people!
@benyc: Speaker Ryan on CNN, asked what happens if Trump hits 1100 delegates but not 1237: We're not bending the rules for anybody. Rules are rules