Trump and Biden
Donald Trump and Joe Biden AFP

President Joe Biden and Republican candidate Donald Trump are inching toward their respective nominations after a number of states held primaries Tuesday. The states that held primary contests were Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, South Dakota, and Washington D.C.

In New Jersey, Trump was uncontested, while Biden is projected to win comfortably. However, New Jersey Republicans delivered a setback to the former president by nominating real estate developer Curtis Bashaw over Trump-backed candidate and Mendham Borough Mayor Christine Serrano Glassner in the GOP Senate primary.

Trump's endorsements have largely proven influential in securing victories for his favored candidates across various GOP primaries, but the New Jersey result showed Trump's endorsement had its limitations, The Hill reported.

Representative Andy Kim (D-N.J.) sailed to victory in the Democratic primary for the New Jersey Senate race.

Kim emerged as the frontrunner after Senator Bob Menendez declared in March that he wouldn't seek reelection as a Democrat. Although Menendez filed to run as an independent candidate, Kim's campaign maintained momentum, securing him a decisive win in the primary.

In Montana, Biden's victory secured him an additional 20 delegates, while Trump got another 31 delegates into the presumptive Republican nominee's column.

Despite his primary win, Biden is not expected to carry Montana in the November general election. Historically a deep-red state, Montana favored Trump over Hillary Clinton by 20 percentage points in 2016 and over Biden by 16 points in 2020.

Current forecasts from DDHQ/The Hill suggest Trump is strongly favored to win the state again in the upcoming election.

Tim Sheehy, a businessman and former member of the Navy SEALs, has emerged as the frontrunner among Montana Republican candidates looking to challenge Senator Jon Tester, the Democratic incumbent, in the upcoming fall election, according to The New York Times.

While Biden and Trump were the sole candidates on the presidential primary ballots in Montana, voters had the option to select "no preference." Both candidates have encountered significant protest vote movements from within their parties during the primary process.

While Biden has faced discontent over his handling of the Israel-Hamas conflict, with some Democrats expressing frustration and opting for protest votes, Trump has encountered challenges from supporters of his former rival Nikki Haley.

The U.S. Virgin Islands and Guam will host two more contests next week, wrapping up the primary elections. Then the attention will shift toward the party conventions scheduled for this summer, when both the Democratic and Republican parties officially nominate their candidates for the upcoming presidential election.