The Latest: Stern words for GOP from loyal Trump supporter


WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on the 2016 presidential campaign, with voters in five states getting their say Saturday in nominating contests (all times Eastern Standard Time):

9:35 a.m.

A Donald Trump backer in Kansas has a stern warning for the establishment figures in the Republican Party who are frantically looking for any way to stop the billionaire businessman from grabbing the presidential nomination.

“If the big, fat GOP don’t like him, they don’t like me.”

Those are the words of 65-year-old Connie Belton, a retired homemaker from Wichita, Kansas.

She’s come out for a Trump rally in Wichita on Saturday morning before heading to the party’s caucuses to give her support for the front-runner.

Belton says she “adores Trump.” She thinks “his heart is as big as his hands.”

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9:30 a.m.

Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign is planning to air a five-minute ad on the Univision television network ahead of Florida’s Democratic primary on March 15.

The goal: show Sanders’ appeal with Hispanic voters.

His campaign says the ad will air Thursday night on the Spanish language network. The campaign says the spot will feature Sanders’ advocacy for workers in Florida’s agricultural sector.

Sanders is trying to overcome a delegate deficit against Hillary Clinton in the upcoming Democratic contests and the ad aims to reach new voters and Latinos.

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8:55 a.m.

Some Republican leaders in Kentucky are worried about a low turnout for the state’s presidential caucuses on Saturday — perhaps because their home-state candidate no longer is in the race.

The caucuses were tailor-made — and paid for — by Rand Paul. They were created so Paul could run for president and re-election to the Senate without violating a state law that bans candidates from appearing on the ballot twice in one day.

The senator is long gone from the presidential race, but he’s still on the hook to pay $250,000 plus other expenses for a contest among four people not named Paul.

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8:40 a.m.

A series of election contests this weekend in the 2016 presidential race will divide up 175 delegates among the Republican candidates and 134 delegates between Democrats Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders.

Going into the weekend round, Donald Trump leads in the GOP race with 329 delegates. Ted Cruz has 231, Marco Rubio has 110 and John Kasich (KAY’-sihk) has 25.

It takes 1,237 delegates to win the Republican nomination.

On the Democratic side, Clinton leads with 1,066 delegates to 432 for Sanders. It takes 2,383 to win the party’s nomination.

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8:25 a.m.

The hunt for delegates by the presidential candidates is resuming Saturday.

Voters in five states are getting their say in the 2016 race.

Democrats and Republicans have contests in Kansas and Louisiana. Republicans in Maine and Kentucky are holding caucuses, as are Democrats in Nebraska.

The polls have already opened in Louisiana.

And there’s more on Sunday, when Maine Democrats and Puerto Rico Republicans are up.