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ABC/ Ida Mae Astute(INDIANAPOLIS) -- ABC News projects Donald Trump will win the Indiana Republican primary, based on analysis of exit poll data and the vote in so far.

Trump will have scooped up his 28th win in a state or primary contest Tuesday night, delivering a blow to the Ted Cruz campaign and the anti-Trump movement.

Indiana was an crucial opportunity for Cruz to stop Trump from reaching the 1,237 number of delegates needed to secure the Republican nomination before the convention this summer.

Nearly half of Indiana GOP primary voters made up their minds over a month ago about who they would vote for, according to preliminary exit polls, and they voted for Trump over Cruz by more than 2-1.

Large support for an outsider candidate in the Hoosier State boosted Trump’s lead.

Furthermore, preliminary exit polls show Trump’s supporters are more excited than Cruz’s about the prospect of their candidate winning the presidency.

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Donald Trump and Sen. Ted Cruz slung mud at each other on Tuesday, as Indiana voters headed to the polls for the state's primary.

It all began in the morning, when Trump was discussing the elder Cruz’s pitch to evangelicals with the hosts of Fox and Friends. Rafael Cruz has exhorted Christians to vote for his son, to avoid what he said would lead to the destruction of the country if Trump becomes president. Trump called his efforts “disgraceful."

"It's disgraceful that his father can go out and do that. And just – and so many people are angry about it,” Trump said. “And the evangelicals are angry about it, the way he does that. And you know, there's a whole thing and, you know, his father was with Lee Harvey Oswald prior to Oswald's being -- you know, shot.”

“I mean, the whole thing is ridiculous. What is this, right prior to his being shot, and nobody brings it up. They don't even talk about that,” Trump said on Fox.

He added, "I mean, what was he doing with Lee Harvey Oswald shortly before the death, before the shooting? It's horrible.”

Ted Cruz then responded while speaking to reporters in Evansville, Indiana.

"I'm going to tell you what I really think of Donald Trump. This man is a pathological liar,” Cruz began. He went on to call him “utterly immoral” and a “serial philanderer.”

And then he delivered the final stab.

"This is not a secret, he’s proud of being a serial philanderer. … The [would-be] president of the United States talks about how great it is to commit adultery, how proud he is, describes his battles with venereal disease as his own personal Vietnam," Cruz said, referencing radio interviews from the 1990s.

Trump responded to Cruz’s comments in a statement Tuesday, calling him a "desperate candidate trying to save his failing campaign.”

The statement added, "Over the last week, I have watched Lyin’ Ted become more and more unhinged…Today’s ridiculous outburst only proves what I have been saying for a long time, that Ted Cruz does not have the temperament to be President of the United States."

The Cruz campaign told ABC News Tuesday in a statement, "Trump is detached from reality, and his false, cheap, meaningless comments every day indicate his desperation to get attention and willingness to say anything to do so," adding, "It's a garbage claim - let Donald talk about garbage, Ted will talk about jobs, freedom and security for the American people."

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iStock/Thinkstock(FLINT, Mich.) -- Governor Rick Snyder is calling on President Obama to drink the water in Flint, Michigan, during his visit Wednesday.

“We are hopeful the president will drink the water in Flint, to help reinforce Gov. Snyder’s actions and the EPA’s message that filtered Flint water is safe to drink,” Snyder's spokeswoman Anna Heaton said in a statement to ABC News.

Asked Monday if the president plans to drink the water in Flint on Wednesday, Press Secretary Josh Earnest said he’s “not aware of any photo-ops that involve the president's consumption of water” but has repeatedly stated the president’s belief -– based on the EPA’s assessment –- that filtered water in Flint is safe to drink.

“What the EPA has communicated to the public is that properly filtered water in Flint is safe to drink. So I certainly would encourage people to continue to listen to the advice that they get from our scientific and public health experts about what water is safe to drink, and the president will certain follow that advice,” Earnest said.

Despite the EPA’s assessment that filtered water is safe to drink, Heaton said that many in Flint continue to drink only bottled water.

Snyder drank filtered tap water in Flint last month to prove that he believes the water is safe to drink.

“Flint residents made it clear that they would like to see me personally drink the water, so today I am fulfilling that request. And I will continue drinking Flint water at work and at home for at least 30 days,” Snyder said in a press release last month.

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White House/Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- In honor of Teacher Appreciation Day, President Obama tweeted his thanks Tuesday to his fifth grade teacher, along with a photo of his fifth grade class.

"To my 5th grade teacher Ms. Mabel Hefty and the educators who inspire our young people every single day: Thank you," Obama wrote.

The tweet came just hours before the president was set to honor the 2016 National Teacher of the Year and this year's finalists at a White House event.

To my 5th grade teacher Ms. Mabel Hefty and the educators who inspire our young people every single day: Thank you. pic.twitter.com/fz2ij8daBg

— President Obama (@POTUS) May 3, 2016

The president expanded on why his fifth grade teacher, Ms. Hefty, had such a lasting impact on him in an email sent to the White House email list last year.

“The first time she called on me, I wished she hadn't. In fact, I wished I were just about anywhere else but at that desk, in that room of children staring at me. But over the course of that year, Ms. Hefty taught me that I had something to say -- not in spite of my differences, but because of them. She made every single student in that class feel special,” Obama wrote.

"She reinforced that essential value of empathy that my mother and my grandparents had taught me. That is something that I carry with me every day as President. This is the simple and undeniable power of a good teacher," the president continued.

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ABC News(NEW YORK) — Indiana residents are headed to the polls to cast their ballots in what has become one of their most important primaries this election season.

"This may be the first time ever that the Indiana primary has played a significant role in the nomination process," said David Campbell, the chair of the political science department at the University of Notre Dame.

Here are five of the most interesting storylines to watch Tuesday:

1. A Possible Trump Sweep


There is a chance that, despite the regional differences and his lack of hometown advantage, Donald Trump could come out of today's primary with a victory reminiscent of his win in New York.

The two states have somewhat similar hybrid delegate allocation systems, which worked in Trump's favor last time around.

For the Republicans, Indiana delegates are allocated in such a way that one candidate could take all 57 of the possible delegates for the state. The delegates are split between those from individual congressional districts -- three from each of nine districts, or 27 total -- and 30 "at large" delegates awarded to the winner of the entire state.


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2. Adding Carly Fiorina Back in the Race

Even though it is mathematically impossible for him to clinch the Republican nomination before the convention, Sen. Ted Cruz took the unusual step of naming his hypothetical running mate.

The move does not appear to have given him the dramatic boost his campaign was likely hoping for.

There has been no polling in Indiana since Fiorina's involvement was announced, but in a poll completed beforehand, Cruz was in second with 34 points to Trump's 49 points and Gov. John Kasich's 13 points.

And, according to a CNN/ORC national poll released Monday, 67 percent of Republicans said that Fiorina's addition did not have much effect on how they would vote, while 18 percent said it made them more likely to vote for Cruz and 14 percent said less likely.

Marjorie Hershey, a political science professor at Indiana University, said that the Fiorina announcement showed "increased desperation on the Cruz campaign."

"It's not normally regarded as the action of a likely winner. ... Why would he need to do that if he felt really confident?" she told ABC News.

3. The Impact of the Cruz-Kasich 'Alliance'


According to a NBC/WSJ/Marist poll in Indiana released on Sunday, there were more voters in the state that disapproved of the short-lived "alliance" than those that did.

Fifty-eight percent of likely Republican primary voters in Indiana said they disapproved of Cruz and Kasich teaming up to beat Trump in the Hoosier State, while 34 percent said they approved of the move.

Beyond that, Campbell said that the alliance could have cost Kasich some delegates.

"The fact that Kasich hasn't been making appearances and the others have, that undoubtedly matters," Campbell said.

Given that the Republican delegates are allocated based on congressional district outcome in Indiana, it is plausible that Kasich could have taken home a minor win if he had done targeted campaigning. "He had no hope of winning the state, but that's where he would have drawn his support," Campbell said.

4. Sanders' Possible Delegate Additions


A NBC/WSJ/Marist poll in Indiana, released on Sunday, had Sen. Bernie Sanders within the margin of error even though he was trailing Hillary Clinton by four points, 46 to 50.

Sanders can expect to win some delegates, since 83 of the state's Democratic delegates are allocated proportionally. There are nine others that are superdelegates, who can wait until the summer convention in Philadelphia to pledge their support to a candidate. (But seven have already pledged their support to Clinton.)

If Clinton secures 24 of the state's 83 pledged delegates, there will be no way for Sanders to earn enough pledged delegates to secure the nomination outright. He would have to rely on superdelegates. And that's something he does not want to have to do, considering he has railed against the "rigged" system and the superdelegates' power in recent speeches.

"When we talk about a rigged system, it’s also important to understand how the Democratic Convention works,” Sanders said at a rally Monday in Evansville, Indiana. “We have won, at this point, 45 percent of pledged delegates, but we have only earned 7 percent of superdelegates.

“So, in other words, the way the system works, is you have establishment candidates who win virtually all of the superdelegates," he continued. "It makes it hard for insurgent candidacies like ours to win.”


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5. Possible Beginning of the General Election

Trump isn't waiting for the election results to start predicting what's next.

During a campaign stop in Indianapolis on Monday, the real estate mogul turned Republican front-runner made it clear that he will be shifting his attention from the primaries to the general election after Indiana.

"You know, we’ve beaten all of these folks. And, Indiana’s very important because if I win, that’s the end of it," Trump said.

He did hedge slightly, saying "we'll have to see" exactly what happens, but "we are having such popularity here."

When directly asked if he thinks Wednesday will mark the beginning of the general election, he said "yes."

"I mean, it sort of already started," Trump said.

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ABC News(SOUTH BEND, Ind.) — On the eve of the now crucial Indiana primary, Donald Trump sought to let his final crowd in the state know how important their votes are in this election.

“Now Indiana is becoming very important...you folks belong where you belong; it's called Importantville right? I love it,” Trump happily rasped.

Trump's campaign closed out the Hoosier State as it has in so many states, sidestepping the latest controversial comment, mired in a barrage of omnidirectional attacks, fending off flimsy alliances and, in spite of it all -- or perhaps because of it all -- remaining supremely confident.

In his last address to the people of Indiana, Trump’s remarks were almost a "best of" compilation -- he brought up rival Ted Cruz’s birther status, decried the media, hit "low-energy” Jeb Bush and reaffirmed his plans to build a wall.

The businessman had criss-crossed the state, reaching thousands of voters, though making fewer stops than Cruz. Trump was quick to berate his rival, using an attack as an impetus to implore people to vote.

“I think he's crazy. Honestly, I think he's crazy. Lying Ted does not have the temperament to be doing this. He is choking like a dog because he is losing so badly. We have to put him away tomorrow folks. We gotta get out and vote," Trump said.

Trump also touted the endorsements of big Indiana names, including famed Indiana University Coach Bobby Knight and former Notre Dame Coach Lou Holtz.

Knight, a man known for his fiery temper, appeared at three events with the Republican frontrunner, proudly declaring in Evansville "that son of a b---- could play for me!”

But even as his crowds swelled and endorsements poured in, Trump could not escape his own greatest foe -- his mouth.

Trump accused Hillary Clinton of playing the "woman’s card," after which his Democratic rival had her two best days of fundraising ever. While denouncing China’s trade policies, Trump said that the country has been “raping” the United States. And he touted the endorsement of Mike Tyson, saying that he wasn’t aware the boxer had ever been convicted of rape.

Despite seeming missteps in recent weeks, though, Trump looks poised to capture Indiana, narrow Cruz says he sees towards winning the nomination. Cruz and John Kasich had tried to derail Trump’s efforts by announcing that they would get out of each other’s way in states the other was likely to win.

Despite seeming missteps in recent weeks, though, Trump looks poised to capture Indiana, increasing the likelihood that he'll manage to win the delegates needed to clinch the nomination. Cruz and John Kasich had tried to derail Trump’s efforts by announcing that they would get out of each other’s way in states where the other was likely to win. However, the strategy has yet to pay off.

Daniel Sharp, of Mishawaka, was not impressed.

"I think they should be able to stand on their own two feet. If they can’t win the votes from the people, all this alliance nonsense is just more political corruption as usual,” he said.

Sharp was in attendance at Trump’s final rally in South Bend. He believes Trump will win the state handily. He mentioned the Hail Mary that Cruz threw last week by announcing Carly Fiorina as his Vice Presidential pick should he get the nomination.

"I don’t think it’s going to make a difference,” Sharp said. "I think the writing’s on the wall for Mr. Cruz.”
 
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ABC News(WILLIAMSON, W.Va.) — Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton kicked off a two-day tour of West Virginia, Ohio and Kentucky by saying she was "sad" and "sorry" about the reaction to her saying in a CNN town hall in March, “we’re going to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business.”

At a campaign event in Williamson, West Virginia, on Monday evening, Bo Copley, who identified himself as an out-of-work coal miner, poignantly asked Clinton "how you can say you’re going to put a lot of coal miners out of -- out of jobs and then come in here and tell us how you’re going to be our friend.

"Because those people out there don’t see you as a friend," Copley said, referring to protesters who had gathered outside the Williamson Health and Wellness Center.

“What I said was totally out of context from what I meant,” Clinton told Copley, “because I have been talking about helping coal country for a very long time.”

She called her comment at the CNN town hall a “misstatement.”

“What I was saying is that, the way things are going now, we will continue to lose jobs,” she said. “That’s what I meant to say.”

She added, “I do feel a little bit sad and sorry that I gave folks the reason or the excuse to be so upset with me because that is not what I intended at all.”

The exchange was another sign that the Clinton name -- once popular in coal country -- is now a tough sell for voters whose local economies have been devastated by closing coal mines. Over the weekend, Clinton's most important campaign surrogate -- husband and former President Bill Clinton -- made his way to Logan, West Virginia, a town of less than 2,000 people nestled along the Guyandotte River, where residents didn’t exactly roll out the red carpet.

A local public relations professional, Dave Allen, sent an email to a representative in West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin’s office ahead of the scheduled event asking that the Clintons not campaign on city property.

“Bill and Hillary Clinton are simply not welcome in our town,” the email message said. “Mrs. Clinton’s anti-coal messages are the last thing our suffering town needs at this point.”

Allen, who said he sent the message on behalf of the City of Logan, explained to ABC News that the “intention was not to stop the event. They just wanted to send a message.”

Sen. Manchin, who was on hand to introduce the former president at Logan Middle School on Sunday, was interrupted by boos and protests from the audience.

“I understand; I feel the pain, guys,” the Democratic senator said. “Bill and Hillary Clinton can carry the suffering that we’ve got.”

He added, “The economy is horrible, and we’re fighting every day to change that,” specifically blaming President Obama and his energy policies.

Across the street, supporters of Republican frontrunner Donald Trump held signs that read “coal” and “vote for Trump, vote for jobs.” A few supporters of Democratic rival Bernie Sanders joined in, as well. On stage, Bill Clinton was unruffled despite being booed and heckled by a group of demonstrators.

“This state’s not that different from the one I grew up in,” he said, referring to Arkansas.

On stage, Clinton said he told his wife, “I want you to send me to West Virginia," to send him to "any place in America that feels left out and left behind.”

But so far the Clintons have had a rocky start to their “Breaking Down Barriers” tour of Appalachia, where Hillary Clinton has promised to “focus on the aspirations and needs of families, especially in often overlooked or underserved communities across the country." West Virginia holds its Democratic primary on May 10 and Kentucky holds its primary on May 17.

At an event earlier Monday in Ashland, Kentucky, Clinton said she wanted her husband to "come out of retirement” to help her come up with a manufacturing and jobs plan if she wins the White House.

"I’ve told my husband he’s got to come out of retirement and be in charge of this because, you know, he’s got more ideas a minute than anybody I know,” Clinton said.

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ABC/ Ida Mae Astute(INDIANAPOLIS) -- After his decisive win last week in Pennsylvania, Donald Trump is now beating Sen. Ted Cruz nearly two-to-one among unbound delegates who say they will support him on the first ballot, according to an analysis by ABC News.

The GOP front-runner is also showing signs of an increasingly organized delegate strategy.

Trump now leads Cruz 43-22 among delegates who are free to vote for any candidate on the first ballot of the Republican convention this July, according to ABC News data.

Of the unbound delegates pledging to vote Trump on the first ballot, 41 hail from Pennsylvania. By contrast, only three Pennsylvania unbound delegates said they plan to vote for Cruz, while nine others said they were uncommitted.

The data reflects a provisional assessment since unbound delegates may change their minds, and pledges of support don’t always carry over to the second ballot and beyond.

If Trump wins Indiana Tuesday, his path to securing the 1,237 delegate votes needed to clinch the nomination on the first ballot becomes more likely, in which case the ongoing fight to persuade delegates would become moot.

Meanwhile, however, both campaigns are waging an intense grassroots battle to sway delegates in case Trump falls short of a majority before the GOP convention in Cleveland this July.

Assessing Trump’s performance in a series of state conventions this weekend, a Trump campaign official told ABC News that despite losses in Virginia, overall “we turned the corner on delegates this weekend.” Trump won Virginia’s March 1 primary, but won only three of the 13 delegates at stake in the April 30 state convention.

Regarding delegates who are bound on the first ballot but become free-agents on a potential second ballot, the Trump official said "on Alaska, we elected 11 Trump supporters in the 11 Trump slots” and also had a “great weekend in Arkansas, where we delivered six supporters of Trump to fill six delegate slots.”

With Cruz mathematically blocked from clinching the nomination on the first ballot, his only path to the GOP nomination is through wooing delegates over the course of the convention in case there’s a second ballot. But Cruz’s task may grow increasingly difficult as some signs suggest the Trump campaign is becoming more engaged in the behind-the-scenes contest to fill both unbound and bound delegate slots with Trump loyalists.

Trump campaign staffers in Pennsylvania, for example, helped some supporters gather the signatures they needed in order to appear on Tuesday’s ballot.

In West Virginia, whose delegates are also bound on the first ballot but can vote for whomever they want on a second ballot, Trump appears to be the only candidate so far to issue a “slate” of preferred delegates, or guidance to voters on which delegates to select when the state votes May 10.

And in Louisiana, the Trump campaign has moved more quickly and invested more time than the Cruz campaign in courting some unbound delegates who are free agents on the first vote.

Following Trump’s decisive wins last week in Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maryland, Delaware and Pennsylvania, the Cruz campaign downplayed the loss, saying it amounted mainly to a victory in Northeastern states that are unlikely to vote Republican in November. Instead, Cruz’s chief delegate counter Ken Cuccinelli sought to place the focus on the delegate fight, claiming the Cruz campaign’s grassroots efforts outmatch Trump’s.

“We’re absolutely destroying them in that contest, and how anyone thinks someone running for president can run a presidential campaign with almost no grassroots effort, is beyond me,” Cuccinelli said on a recent episode of ABC News’ “Powerhouse Politics” podcast.

But Mike Stuart, co-chairman of the Trump Campaign in West Virginia, who is helping lead Trump’s grassroots efforts in the Mountain State, took exception to Cuccinelli’s claim.

“I think it's as delusional as the Cruz campaign is today,” he told ABC News. “When I hear this out-of-stater telling me about the grassroots efforts in my state, where I grew up, and have been involved in politics for decades, it's not believable.

“His comment bears of a lot of wishfulness and hopefulness, but I’m dealing with the reality of how to win in West Virginia. We’re the only campaign with a slate because we understand how the process works.

“I believe our slate of delegates will stick with Mr. Trump through the first ballot, the fifth ballot and even the 20th ballot, if we have to go that far,” he added. “I’m comfortable our team is going to stay with us.”

In Louisiana, despite some reports that the state’s 10 uncommitted delegates will likely vote for Cruz on the first ballot at the Republican convention, ABC News has identified only one unbound delegate committed to the Texas senator, as he and Trump continue to jockey for delegates there.

Kirk Williamson, a delegate formerly bound to Sen. Marco Rubio who is now uncommitted, told ABC News he receives phone calls from staffers in the Cruz and Trump campaigns about once a week. He characterizes these talks as “open-ended conversations.”

“I tell them what I tell you,” he said. “I haven’t made up my mind at this point.”

Leslie Tassin, another unbound Louisiana delegate who was allocated to represent Rubio at the convention but now says he’s uncommitted, told ABC News the Trump campaign made contact with him before the Cruz camp. The Trump staffer apparently also invested more effort into courting him.

“We had a Trump person come to my house and spent an hour and a half,” Tassin said.

Two weeks later, a Cruz campaign staffer in Houston called him on the phone, he said.

“I said, ‘What took you so long to call?’” Tassin said, recalling his discussion. “They said, ‘We weren’t organized. Now we’re organized.’”

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White House/Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama says that Republican front-runner Donald Trump is not equipped to deal with the challenges of being president.

“I think that he is not somebody who even within the Republican Party can be considered as equipped to deal with the problems of this office, but look, we live in a democracy," President Obama said in an interview Monday with WMUR-TV, an ABC affiliate in New Hampshire.

If Trump does become the Republican nominee, Obama said he's confident that the Democratic nominee will win in a general election match-up.

"If in fact the Republicans nominate Mr. Trump, then it’s going to be an interesting fall season," he said. "I’m confident that ultimately the Democrat in that circumstance will win.”

The president has not been shy about criticizing the Republican front-runner, most recently roasting him at the White House Correspondents' Dinner on Saturday night.

"They say Donald lacks the foreign policy experience to be president. But in fairness he has spent years meeting with leaders from around the world: Miss Sweden, Miss Argentina, Miss Azerbaijan," the president joked.

Trump is the only remaining Republican presidential candidate with a viable path to clinch the Republican nomination with pledged delegates ahead of the Republican convention in July. In Indiana, which holds its primary on Tuesday, a recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll showed Trump in the lead.

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ABC/ Ida Mae Astute(NEW YORK) -- Hillary Clinton has outraised Bernie Sanders for the first time in months.

On Monday, her campaign said that they had raised about $26.4 million in donations compared to Sanders' $25.8 million announced Sunday.

Clinton’s campaign also said they raised $2.4 million off of Trump’s “women’s card” remark.

According to Clinton campaign spokesman Brian Fallon, April 29 and 30 (the days following Trump’s comment, when the campaign began selling actual women cards and fundraising off of it) were the campaign’s best two consecutive online fundraising days ever.

The campaign also said 118,000 people had donated to the campaign and 40 percent of those donors were new.

The campaign is also beginning to staff up in battleground states, in addition to planning travel there, in yet another sign that she’s pivoting to the general election.

Clinton's aides say that this month we should expect her to travel to both primary states and battleground states like Ohio and Virginia. On Tuesday, she'll campaign in Ohio, the same day as the Indiana Democratic primary.

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ABC/ Ida Mae Astute(CARMEL, Ind.) -- At his campaign rally in Carmel, Indiana, Monday, Donald Trump wasted no time bringing up a video of Ted Cruz's new running mate, Carly Fiorina, taking a fall Sunday.

"By the way, she fell off the stage the other day, did anybody see that? And Cruz didn't do anything. Even I would have helped her," Trump told 1,600 supporters while taking swipes at his rival.

In the video, it appears that Cruz didn't immediately see the fall, which did not injure Fiorina.

"That's really cruel," Trump continued. "She just went down. She went down a long way, right? And she went down right in front of him and he was talking, he kept talking. He didn't even look like -- that was a weird deal."

The fall took place in Lafayette, Indiana, while Fiorina was introducing the Cruz family.

“Let me welcome your next first family. Heidi Cruz, your next first lady, Caroline and Catherine and the next president of the United States, Ted Cruz," said Fiorina before she stumbled off the stage.

Back in September, when Fiorina was campaigning for the GOP nomination, a curtain collapsed behind her as she addressed a conference of women entrepreneurs in Texas.

With a pivotal vote in Indiana Tuesday, Cruz is vowing to "go the distance," whatever the outcome of tomorrow's primary.

"It is an incredibly important state," Cruz said of Indiana on ABC's This Week. "We are competing hard. I hope we do well here. I can tell you I'm barnstorming the state, we're in a bus with my family, we're doing everything we can to earn the votes of the men and women in this state. We're going the distance. We're competing the entire distance.”

Cruz, who trails his main rival Donald Trump by hundreds of delegates, enters this week after two weeks of losses to Trump in six states.

Cruz said he is hoping the announcement of Fiorina as his running mate and the endorsement of Indiana Gov. Mike Pence will help him secure a win in Indiana and give his campaign momentum as he heads into other states, including California.

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ABC/ Ida Mae Astute(MARION, Ind.) -- Supporters of Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump shouted in his rival Sen. Ted Cruz’s face as he squared off with them on an Indiana street for more than seven minutes, just a day before Indiana’s do-or-die GOP primary.

Cruz was finishing up a campaign stop at a restaurant alongside a river in a small town northeast of Indianapolis when he heard half a dozen men chanting “Lyin’ Ted” and other slogans across the street.

The Texas senator made his way toward the men surrounded by a swarm of his supporters and members of the media, then debated the men, one of whom told him, “We don’t want you.”

“I’m running to be everyone’s president,” Cruz told the men. “Those who vote for me and even those who don’t.”

The exchange remained quite heated throughout, with Cruz hitting Trump on the Second Amendment, immigration and media coverage. The men criticized Cruz for his wife’s previous career at investment banking firm Goldman Sachs, his call for employing carpet-bombing against ISIS, and being born in Canada. They constantly interrupted each other.

“I will tell you this, sir,” Cruz said, “America is a better country --”

“Without you,” one of the protesters interrupted.

“Thank you for those kind sentiments,” Cruz replied. “Let me point out, I have treated you respectfully the entire time. And a question that everyone here should ask --”

“Are you Canadian?” another protester cut him off.

One of the Trump supporters told Cruz he should drop out because it was mathematically impossible for him to clinch the presidential nomination on the first ballot of the GOP’s convention this summer. Cruz said Trump would not win enough delegates to do so either.

As the men shouted in his face, Cruz pushed them to bring up policy issues. The Republican presidential candidate is known for his accomplished collegiate debating career.

 

.@tedcruz has extended back-and-forth with Donald Trump supporters who are shouting "Lyin' Ted" in his face pic.twitter.com/AqPbpWJf5c

— Ben Gittleson (@bgittleson) May 2, 2016

 

“Civilized people don’t just scream and yell,” Cruz said. “I’m not yelling at you.”

Cruz, whose path to the nomination will grow much more difficult if he fails to stop Trump from winning in Indiana on Tuesday, compared the way he spoke with the protesters and the way the billionaire businessman has handled dissent. Trump said in February that he wanted to punch a protester in the face, and he has said previously that he would pay the legal bills of his supporters who fight protesters. (He later walked back on that.)

“If I were Donald Trump, I wouldn’t have come over and talked to you,” Cruz said. “I wouldn’t have shown you that respect.”

An NBC/WSJ/Marist poll released Sunday showed Trump with a 15 percentage point lead over Cruz in the Hoosier State, with the third remaining GOP candidate, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, trailing Trump by 36 percent.

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ABCNews.com(LAFAYETTE, Ind.) -- Carly Fiorina took a rather graceful fall from the stage after introducing the Cruz family on Sunday.

“Let me welcome, your next first family. Heidi Cruz, your next first lady, Caroline and Catherine and the next president of the United States, Ted Cruz,” Fiorina told a crowd of supporters in Lafayette, Indiana, before taking a tumble.

The former Hewlett-Packard CEO and running mate of Ted Cruz appeared to be uninjured as she steadied herself after tripping.

Back in September, when Fiorina was campaigning for the GOP nomination, a curtain collapsed behind her as she addressed a conference of women entrepreneurs in Texas.

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ABC News(OSCEOLA, Ind.) -- With Indiana primary voters headed to the polls in less than 24 hours, Ted Cruz said he will “absolutely” have a path to victory even if he loses the next GOP presidential nominating contest.

“We intend to do absolutely everything possible to win tomorrow. It’s gonna be up to the people of Indiana,” Cruz told ABC News while campaigning in Osceola, Indiana. “The polls have been all over the place. There has literally been a 30-point swing depending on what poll you are looking at. We are neck-and-neck right now in the state of Indiana.”

A NBC/Wall Street Journal/Marist poll released Sunday showed Donald Trump 15 percentage points ahead of Cruz and John Kasich in the Hoosier state. Trump has 49 percent support, while Cruz follows with 34 percent, and Kasich trails at 13 percent.

When pressed on whether he would drop out before the GOP convention in July, Cruz said, "I am in for the distance as long as we have a viable path to victory. I am competing until the end.”

On the eve of the primary, the Texas senator framed the race as a choice about the future of the nation’s children.

“Do you really want to go through the next four years with a president who, if your child came home and simply uttered the words coming out of that president's mouth, would make you punish your child, would make you embarrassed for your child?” Cruz asked. “We need a president who unifies us. Who speaks to our better angels."

He added: "This is a fundamental decision for our nation and I have tremendous faith in Hoosiers across this great state.”

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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Sen. Bernie Sanders insists that the Democratic convention will be a "contested contest," though acknowledging it would be tough for him to get there.

Indeed, the Vermont senator would need to win 65 percent of the remaining pledged delegates in order to take the lead over Hillary Clinton in pledged delegates, according to an ABC News analysis of the delegate count.

By contrast, Clinton needs 35 percent to keep her lead.

"What our polling suggests is it is going to be a very steep climb," Sanders said Sunday night on the campaign trail, referring to the 65 percent he would need.

From there, Sanders would need to persuade superdelegates who’re overwhelmingly in Clinton’s camp to switch to his side. But it’s still likely that Sanders will block Clinton from clinching the nomination using pledged delegates.

She needs to win an average of 68 percent of the vote in remaining states in order to lock up the 2,383 magic number without help from superdelegates.

Sanders has repeatedly talked about how the superdelegate system is "rigged," but new tabulations suggest that even if superdelegates voted along the same lines as the people in their state, that would not give Sanders the edge.

"When we talk about a rigged system, it’s also important to understand how the Democratic Convention works,” Sanders said at a rally Monday in Evansville, Indiana. “We have won, at this point, 45 percent of pledged delegates, but we have only earned 7 percent of superdelegates.”

“So, in other words, the way the system works, is you have establishment candidates who win virtually all of the superdelegates. It makes it hard for insurgent candidacies like ours to win,” he added.

That said, if all the superdelegates in states that have already voted aligned with the general Democratic populations of their respective states, Clinton would have 374 superdelegates and Sanders would have 147, the ABC News analysis shows.

That split is certainly less wide than it is now -- Clinton has 520 super delegates while Sanders only has 39 -- but it still wouldn’t give Sanders enough to take the lead.

And barring a catastrophe for Clinton in Indiana, there will be no way for Sanders to earn enough pledged delegates to secure the nomination outright after Tuesday. He would have to rely on superdelegates.

Sanders did pick up a handful of superdelegates who were previously uncommitted in Vermont, Utah and Nevada, according to his campaign sources.

In spite of that, Clinton is squarely in the lead when looking at the total number of delegates.

Of Indiana's Democratic delegates, 83 are allocated proportionally and there are nine others that are superdelegates, who can wait until the summer convention in Philadelphia to pledge their support to a candidate.

"Bernie will still pick up some [delegates] so he won't be completely blocked out, but momentum is working against him," said David Campbell, chairman of the political science department at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana.

"The more and more that Hillary does appear to be the inevitable nominee, the harder it will be for Bernie," Campbell told ABC News. "His die-hard supporters are going to show up and support him regardless."

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