Mitt Romney failed the put the final nails in the coffins of rivals Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, and Ron Paul on Tuesday, but he did widen his delegate lead over his competitors for the Republican presidential nomination.
The former Massachusetts governor's aides have begun using near inevitability as a key talking point in the wake of Romney's wins in Ohio, Idaho, Virginia, Vermont, and Alaska.
Romney campaign staffers emphasized that their candidate only needs to win 48% of all remaining delegates, noting that he has won 53% so far, to secure the nomination. Meanwhile, Santorum would need to win 65% of available delegates, while Gingrich would need to capture 70%.
Experts also said Wednesday that upcoming primaries in southern states could help Romney because they will elevate former Georgia Congressman Gingrich as a more formidable rival to Santorum for conservative Republican votes.