Trump wins New Hampshire GOP primary, besting Nikki Haley

| Updated: 24 January, 2024 3:47 pm IST
Donald Trump secures victory in New Hampshire Republican Primary, defeating Nikki Haley.

NEW DELHI: In the New Hampshire primary, US former President Donald Trump emerged victorious, delivering a setback to his sole remaining significant competitor, Nikki Haley, and reinforcing his position as the probable nominee of the Republican party.

Associated Press declared Trump the winner of the contest at 8 pm on Tuesday. At that point, he held a lead over Haley by approximately 8 percentage points, with about 30 per cent of the votes counted. This marks the second consecutive instance where the AP swiftly announced the Republican frontrunner’s victory.

Following a clear win in Iowa, Trump’s success in the New Hampshire primary poses a challenge for Haley just before the February 24 primary in her native South Carolina. According to RealClearPolitics’ polling average, Trump is presently ahead of Haley by approximately 30 points in South Carolina.

Trump’s victory in New Hampshire follows a decisive win in Iowa and presents a challenge for Haley leading up to the primary in her home state of South Carolina on February 24. As per the RealClearPolitics polling average, Trump currently holds a lead of approximately 30 points over Haley in South Carolina.

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A statement from Taylor Budowich, the CEO of Make America Great Again Inc., the super PAC backing Trump, declares, “Now is the moment for solidarity, for gearing up against the Democrats, and for Nikki Haley, it’s time to withdraw.”

Securing victory in the primary could enable the former president to conclude the nomination contest swiftly and shift his focus to a general election showdown with President Joe Biden. Despite several legal challenges, including four criminal indictments, looming over him, Tuesday’s results bring Trump closer to achieving this objective, potentially diverting attention from the campaign trail.

Despite Trump’s victory, Nikki Haley, the former UN Ambassador, and South Carolina governor, stated her intention to remain in the race.

“This race is far from over. There are dozens of states left to go,” Haley said Tuesday night after the race was called. “And the next one is my sweet state of South Carolina.”

Haley’s defeat prompts concerns regarding the duration of her stay in the race, even though her supporters argue that she could persist despite not securing a victory on Tuesday. Pressure from donors for a robust performance in New Hampshire added to the challenges faced by Haley leading up to the vote.

The extent of Trump’s victory is expected to impact the duration of her campaign and the willingness of donors to finance her efforts, which are becoming more challenging as her chances diminish.

Brittany Yanick, a representative of SFA Fund, a super PAC backing Haley, attempted to minimise the setback by stating that the results indicate the campaign exceeded expectations in New Hampshire. She further mentioned that Haley’s political network possesses the “strength and resources” necessary for upcoming contests in February and early March.

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Large numbers of voters turned out, leading to extended queues at certain polling locations. The figure has the possibility of surpassing the 322,000 forecasted by the New Hampshire Secretary of State, setting a record for a Republican presidential primary.

A multitude of voters participated, resulting in lengthy queues at certain polling locations. The turnout can exceed the 322,000 projection made by the New Hampshire Secretary of State, potentially setting a new record for a Republican presidential primary.

Pre-primary polls consistently indicated Trump holding a double-digit lead over Haley. In the days leading up to the vote, Trump received a boost from endorsements by three significant rivals: US Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina, entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy, and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. DeSantis, initially seen as Trump’s strongest challenger, secured a distant second place in Iowa but withdrew from the race before the New Hampshire primary.

“While we work toward November 2024, one thing is increasingly clear today: Donald Trump is headed straight into a General Election matchup where he’ll face the only person to have ever beaten him at the ballot box: Joe Biden,” Biden campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez said in a statement.

Haley concentrated her campaign efforts in the Granite State, relying on the appeal of her centrist message to the state’s electorate. With the endorsement of popular Governor Chris Sununu and the backing of Americans For Prosperity, the super PAC affiliated with billionaire Charles Koch, she received substantial support. The super PAC invested millions in advertising and turnout-the-vote initiatives on her behalf.

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