Los Angeles, Jun 8: Already the presumptive Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton sailed to victory in primary in New Jersey, one of six states voting across the country.
Rival Bernie Sanders hoped a strong showing in California, the night's biggest prize, would raise doubts about Clinton's historic achievement and spur superdelegate to rally around him instead.
Donald Trump won Republican primaries in New Jersey, New Mexico and South Dakota, capping an otherwise difficult day for the presumptive GOP nominee. Party leaders recoiled at Trump's comments about a Hispanic judge, with one senator even pulling his endorsement.
Trump was conciliatory at his victory rally, saying he understands "the responsibility" of leading the Republican Party. He also made a direct appeal to dejected Sanders supporters and other Democrats.
"This election isn't about Republican or Democrat, it's about who runs this country: the special interests or the people," he said. Clinton's win in New Jersey came a day after she secured the 2,383 delegates she needed to become first female presumptive nominee of a major political party, according to an Associated Press tally.
Her total includes pledged delegates won in primaries and caucuses, as well as superdelegates the party officials and officeholders who can back a candidate of their choosing.
"To every little girl who dreams big: Yes, you can be anything you want_even president. Tonight is for you," Clinton wrote on Twitter shortly after she won New Jersey.
"We are at the brink of a historic, historic unprecedented moment," she said during a rally in California on Monday. Clinton and Sanders were both pressing for victory in California, each eager to effectively end their primary battle on a high note.
However, the California results might not be known yet; more than half of Californians vote by mail, and the deadline for returned ballots isn't until Friday, as long as they are postmarked by Election Day.
Contests were also being held in Montana, New Mexico, North Dakota and South Dakota. Clinton was waiting until most of the voting was complete before fully reveling in becoming the first woman nominated by a major US political party.
She was to address supporters at a victory party in Brooklyn, where her campaign planned to run a gauzy video highlighting the achievements of women who helped clear a path.