Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley appears to be making significant strides in New Hampshire’s Republican primary, consolidating roughly 30% of the vote in two recent polls. The focus here is on the poll conducted by the Saint Anselm College Survey Center, involving over 1,000 likely voters:
- Donald Trump: 44%
- Haley: 30%
- Chris Christie: 12%
- Ron DeSantis: 6%
- Vivek Ramaswamy: 5%
Haley’s support doubled since the previous Saint Anselm survey in September, while other November polls consistently placed her at around 20%. Notably, if Christie were to exit the race, Haley would likely gain most of his 12%, putting her in close competition with Trump.
The political landscape in New Hampshire is evolving, with the potential for independent and Democratic-leaning voters to participate in the GOP primary. This unpredictability could impact both primary outcomes and general election dynamics. Trump remains the frontrunner for the Republican nomination, even with Haley’s surge in New Hampshire.
However, if Haley outperforms expectations in Iowa and excels in New Hampshire, she could arrive in her home state of South Carolina on Feb. 24 with substantial momentum and resources to compete in the Super Tuesday contests on March 5. Beyond that point, the race could become decisive.
Moreover, Haley’s prolonged presence in the race raises questions about Trump’s fitness for office. While she primarily critiques President Joe Biden, her points resonate with wavering Republican voters. For instance, Haley proposes mental competency tests for individuals over 75, a remark that extends beyond Biden to others.
Additionally, Haley suggests that Trump brings chaos with him, a factor that concerns many Americans. Every time she highlights Trump’s chaotic reputation, she indirectly aids Biden’s campaign by reminding voters of the issues they had with Trump.
In summary, Haley’s rising poll numbers may assist in reinforcing reasons why some voters oppose Trump, contributing to the effort to recreate the pro-democracy, anti-Trump coalition that propelled Biden to victory in 2020.