Monday, April 25, 2016

Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump Step Up Attacks

The campaign's taking on the feel of a general election matchup.

From Cathleen Decker, at LAT, "Trump and Clinton joust in Pennsylvania as underdogs nip at their heels":

As Tuesday's quintuple primaries near, the Republican and Democratic presidential campaigns appear to be moving in tandem for the first time.

Front-runners Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are targeting each other with an eye to November's general election and are mostly ignoring their party challengers. Behind them, their rivals are still aiming at the front-runners in a desperate effort to gain ground before the primary season spirals further out of their control.

Polls suggest that voters in Pennsylvania, the biggest of the Tuesday primaries, are lining up behind Clinton and Trump much as voters in New York did last week — in big numbers.

Democrat Bernie Sanders and Republicans Ted Cruz and John Kasich have given no sign they intend to leave the race before the final primaries in June. But losses in Pennsylvania and the four other Tuesday primaries would be another major blow to the underdog candidates, both in momentum lost and in the delegates each needs to rebound.

"They are struggling to get a narrative that trumps the notion that the other two are inevitable," said longtime Pennsylvania pollster G. Terry Madonna, whose surveys for Franklin and Marshall College have Clinton and Trump holding double-digit leads in Pennsylvania.

The contest here has been an echo of the national race. Clinton, who has ties to the state dating to childhood, has campaigned as if she was running for mayor with an excruciatingly local pitch. Sanders, with his more nationalized message, has reveled in the giant, college-area rallies that have dominated his campaign everywhere...