Mitt Romney marches on. The front-running Republican presidential candidate is expected to lock up the GOP nomination next week in Texas after scoring two victories in the Arkansas and Kentucky primaries Tuesday.
The Associated Press estimates that Romney now has 1,065 delegates, 79 short of the 1,144 needed for the nomination. Texas will have 155 delegates at stake May 29.
Romney has brushed aside a variety of GOP challengers in the past several months. The only one left is Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, who is far behind in the delegate count.
A recent USA Today/Gallup Poll gave Romney a favorablity rating of 50 per cent, an increase from 39 per cent in February. He is in a statistical tie with President Obama, according to various polls.
Romney's campaign released a new ad Wednesday condemning President Obama's record on the economy.
The ad argues that Obama is trying to shift attention from high unemployment and other economic problems as he attacks Romney's record as head of Bain Capital, a private equity firm. Among other interviews shown in the ad, a woman quoted saying, "I expected great things from the president when he was elected, and now it is just a feeling of disappointment that he has not been able to fulfill all of the things, all of the changes that he talked about."
Romney and Obama strategists agree that the economy will be the top issue in the November election.
Ken Walsh covers the White House and politics for U.S. News. He writes the daily blog "Ken Walsh's Washington" at usnews.com and "The Presidency" column for the U.S. News digital weekly. He can be reached at email@example.com, on Facebook and Twitter.