Donald Trump stormed to victory in the Republican caucuses in Nevada, giving the billionaire businessman his third straight win in the race for the White House.
With 20 percent of the vote in, TV networks gave Trump 44 percent, with senators Marco Rubio of Florida and Ted Cruz of Texas trailing some 20 points behind in a tight race for second.
“This is an amazing night,” Trump told cheering supporters in a victory speech.
The lopsided result underscored the enormous challenge Trump’s rivals face as the candidates head into next week’s all important “Super Tuesday” contests involving 11 states.
Trump said his win was broadly based.
“We won the evangelicals. We won with young. We won with old. We won with highly educated. We won with poorly educated,” he said.
“I love the poorly educated. We’re the smartest people. We’re the most loyal people.”
The remaining two candidates for the Republican presidential nomination, retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson and Ohio Governor John Kasich, lagged far behind in the single digits.