Mitt Romney won Maryland's Republican presidential primary Tuesday night, earning the GOP front-runner the majority of the state's 37 delegates and pushing him closer to the nomination.

The Associated Press and television networks projected Romney's win as the polls closed at 8 p.m.

With 75 percent of precincts reporting, Romney led with 48 percent of the vote. Chief rival Rick Santorum was next with 30 percent of the vote, while Newt Gingrich trailed with 11 percent and Ron Paul garnered 10 percent.

Romney automatically takes the 10 at-large delegates awarded to the state's winner and should take a majority of the 24 delegates assigned by congressional district. Paired with a sweep of Washington, D.C.'s delegates, Romney should add somewhere in the neighborhood of 50 delegates to his total from the Mid-Atlantic contests.


The former Massachusetts governor had 568 delegates before Tuesday's results, according to ABC News. Rick Santorum is next with just 273 delegates. It takes 1,144 to clinch the Republican nomination.

Romney spent little time in Maryland before the election, opting to focus his efforts on the more competitive Wisconsin primary.

The Maryland results will be a disappointment for Gingrich and Paul, who were hoping their ties to the region — and easy and affordable campaigning made possible by Maryland's proximity to the nation's capital — might have netted a surprise delegate haul.

Still, neither candidate scheduled an election-night rally, a nod to the fact that neither had been able to gain traction in the Maryland contest. Still, Gingrich told voters in the state Monday that he'll press on until Romney sews up the nomination.

"Gov. Romney doesn't have it locked down. And we have no obligation to back off and concede anything until he does," the former House Speaker said.

— This story was updated at 9:05 p.m.