Photo: Sean Rayner / Getty Images.

Donald Trump won his home state’s primary on Tuesday, pushing him closer toward securing the delegates he needs to lock down the Republican presidential nomination before the party’s convention this summer.

Multiple networks projected the race for Trump shortly after polls in New York closed Tuesday evening.

“Thank you New York! I love you!” Trump tweeted shortly after he was declared the state’s victor.

Conservative media titan Matt Drudge tweeted that exit polls from the state showed Trump with 61% of the Republican vote, a number that would blow his rivals out of the water.

The exit polls found Ohio Gov. John Kasich in second place with 24% of the vote and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in third with 15% of the vote.

Trump said earlier on Tuesday that he was hoping to win more than 70 delegates in the primary, in which 95 delegates are at stake.

The race for the Republican presidential nomination has heated up in recent weeks as a contested convention looks increasingly likely.

Trump is battling his remaining GOP rivals, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz and Ohio Gov. John Kasich, to get the 1,237 delegates he needs to secure the nomination outright. His New York win served as a bounce back from a 13-point loss to Cruz in Wisconsin, where Cruz outpaced Trump by 30 delegates.

Trump remains the current frontrunner for his party, but if Cruz and Kasich chip away in the delegate column, it’s possible that no candidate will reach the magic number before the convention.

In that case, many delegates who would be bound to Trump on the first ballot of convention voting could vote for whomever they want on subsequent ballots.

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