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Thursday, February 22, 2024
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Nikki Haley Narrows the Gap on Donald Trump’s Lead in a Pivotal Early Voting State. Will it Make a Difference?-1

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Nikki Haley Support for Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley is on the rise in New Hampshire, just a month before the state’s crucial first-in-the-nation presidential primary.

Impressive Gains and Favorable Poll Results

In a recent Saint Anselm College poll, nearly one-third of Granite State voters expected to participate in the Republican primary expressed Nikki Haley as their preferred candidate. This marks a significant uptick since September, with Haley doubling her support in the state. Notably, she now holds a ten-percentage-point lead over her position in a November CNN/University of New Hampshire survey.

Trailing Behind Trump and Strategic Endorsements: Nikki Haley

Despite emerging as the clear second choice, Haley still trails former President Donald Trump by 14 percentage points in the Saint Anselm poll. Her mounting momentum is attributed to strategic endorsements, particularly from New Hampshire’s popular Republican Governor Chris Sununu. Sununu’s backing has positioned Haley as a compelling alternative to Trump, according to Neil Levesque, Director of Saint Anselm College’s New Hampshire Institute of Politics.

Support Among Key Voter Groups

Haley’s appeal is notably strong among “somewhat conservative” and “moderate” Republican primary voters, showcasing her broad appeal in a state where independents play a crucial role in shaping candidates’ destinies.

Strategic Objectives and Challenging Trump’s Narrative

While defeating Trump in the New Hampshire primary may not be the immediate goal, some experts suggest that getting close enough to challenge the perception of Trump as the uncontested favorite in the Republican race could be a strategic win for Haley. This becomes particularly crucial as she sets her sights on other GOP primary contests, notably in her home state of South Carolina.

Trump’s Formidable Support and Ongoing Legal Challenges

Despite facing ongoing legal challenges, Trump’s support in the Granite State remains robust, consistently hovering around the 40% range among Republican voters. The poll release from Saint Anselm College notes that Trump’s supporters seem undeterred by the former president’s legal battles, including four sets of criminal indictments.

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