Mitt Romney Can't Clinch GOP Nod Until Late-May

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Presumed Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney must wait until at least May 29 to declare himself the official winner.

Romney grabbed nearly every available delegate in Tuesday evening's primaries as he cleanly swept New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Rhode Island and Connecticut without much competition from Ron Paul or Newt Gingrich, who on Wednesday effectively gave the GOP nod to Romney.

"As I look around at the millions of Americans without work, the graduates who can't get a job, the soldiers who return home to an unemployment line, it breaks my heart," Romney said. "This does not have to be. It is the result of failed leadership and of a faulty vision."

Romney, according to projections from The Associated Press, holds 844 delegates and needs 1,144. He would not be able to reach that threshold until the Texas primary on May 29.

Even if Romney won every single delegate in the next seven primaries -- Indiana, North Carolina, West Virginia, Nebraska, Oregon, Arkansas and Kentucky -- he would be just shy at 1,120 -- 24 delegates short.

With Gingrich's effective withdrawal from the race, Rep. Ron Paul remains the only Republican candidate actively vying for delegates. Paul has signaled since 2011 when he entered the race that he would stay in for the long haul to pick off as many delegates as possible for the national convention.

Paul is too far behind Romney to outright win the GOP nomination.

-- Written by Joe Deaux in New York.

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