Trump focuses on Nikki Haley in New Hampshire after DeSantis exits race

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webnexttech | Trump focuses on Nikki Haley in New Hampshire after DeSantis exits race
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MANCHESTER, N.H.— Two days ahead of the New Hampshire primary, the race for the Republican presidential nomination narrowed to former President Donald Trump and former South Carolina Gov.
Nikki Haley after Florida Gov.
Ron DeSantis suspended his struggling campaign.
Mr.
DeSantis’ exit from the race Sunday left Mr.
Trump and Ms.
Haley to duke it out in New Hampshire, which holds the first-in-the-nation primary on Tuesday.
Ms.
Haley and Mr.
Trump threw punches at each other at dueling campaign rallies Sunday night.
Mr.
Trump told supporters at a packed rally in Rochester that Ms.
Haley had struck “an unholy alliance” with Republicans-in-name-only and with people who back President Biden and do not support strengthening the southern border, a top campaign issue among Republican primary voters in New Hampshire.
“She’s unelectable,” Mr.
Trump said of his only remaining Republican rival.
Ms.
Haley, who served as Mr.
Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations, said the party needs to move forward with a younger and less-embattled Republican leader.
She promoted polls showing her defeating Mr.
Biden by up to 17 percentage points.
SEE ALSO: DeSantis drops out ahead of New Hampshire primary, endorses Trump “I agree with a lot of his policies, but rightly or wrongly, chaos follows him,” she said.
“You know I’m right.
Chaos follows him.
And we can’t have a country in disarray and a world on fire and go to four more years of chaos.
We won’t survive it.” Analysts are predicting Ms.
Haley may not last much longer in the race.
Mr.
Trump is expected to pick up at least some of the DeSantis vote.
Mr.
DeSantis endorsed Mr.
Trump on Sunday and condemned Ms.
Haley’s bid for the nomination as “a repackaged form of warmed-over corporatism.” Mr.
Trump’s team responded by urging the party — and Ms.
Haley — to unite around the former president and his bid to defeat Mr.
Biden.
Mr.
Trump’s path to securing the nomination appears unstoppable despite Ms.
Haley’s likely strong second-place finish on Tuesday.
Mr.
Trump won the Jan.
15 Iowa caucuses with 51% of the vote, and polls show him on track to win more than half of likely Republican voters in New Hampshire’s contest.
He is also leading by double-digits in Ms.
Haley’s home state of South Carolina, which holds the next primary, on Feb.
24, after the Nevada Republican caucuses on Feb.
8 that Mr.
Trump is poised to dominate.
Mr.
Trump’s campaign team on Sunday eyed New Hampshire as an endpoint to the nomination race and the beginning of the general election against Mr.
Biden.
“President Trump is going to win on Tuesday,” Trump spokesman Jason Miller told reporters.
“This would be a good time for Nikki Haley to get out and show that she does want to beat Joe Biden.” Ms.
Haley showed no signs she plans to exit the race.
Instead, she celebrated her victory at the Sunday evening rally after prevailing over what had once been a slate of more than a dozen Republican candidates running against Mr.
Trump for the nomination.
She celebrated Mr.
DeSantis’ exit from the race.
“Can you hear that sound?” Ms.
Haley told the cheering crowd at Exeter High School.
“That’s the sound of a two-person race.” Ms.
Haley’s strength as a candidate may decline after New Hampshire, where polls show her within 16 points of Mr.
Trump.
She is expected to pick a large share of the state’s undeclared voters, who can vote in the Republican primary.
Undeclared voters include many moderates and Democrats looking for an alternative to Mr.
Trump, as well as Democrats who plan to vote for Mr.
Biden in November but will cast a vote for Ms.
Haley to try to keep Mr.
Trump off the general election ballot.
Ms.
Haley isn’t likely to quit after Tuesday, even if she loses to Mr.
Trump.
Her campaign team announced she will hold a rally on Wednesday in Charleston, South Carolina.
Ms.
Haley barnstormed New Hampshire with Gov.
Chris Sununu over the weekend and received the endorsement Sunday from the New Hampshire Union Leader, which called her “easily the most qualified candidate on either ballot.” Mr.
Trump’s support, meanwhile, has expanded in the past week by a couple of points, and he is expected to pick up at least some of the voters who backed Mr.
DeSantis, a staunch conservative who more closely aligns with Mr.
Trump and his agenda.
The Florida governor was polling at around 6% in New Hampshire after placing a distant second to Mr.
Trump in Iowa, where he finished with about 21% of the vote.
In a statement recorded Sunday in Tallahassee and released on X, Mr.
DeSantis, once considered a formidable Republican presidential front-runner, said after losing Iowa that he determined there is no path to the nomination for him.
“If there was anything I could do to produce a favorable outcome, more campaign stops, more interviews, I would do it,” Mr.
DeSantis said.
“But I can’t ask our supporters to donate their time and volunteer their resources if we don’t have a path to victory.” Mr.
Trump, speaking to supporters in Rochester Sunday night, called Mr.
DeSantis “a terrific person” who ran “a really good campaign.” Earlier in the day, the former president said he was retiring the “DeSanctimious” nickname he gave the Florida governor, whom he once viciously attacked for challenging him for the nomination.
Mr.
Trump boasted of his dominant poll numbers in primary states and nationwide that show him defeating Ms.
Haley and general election polls that give him an advantage over Mr.
Biden.
He credited Mr.
Biden and congressional Democrats, whose policies have led to high inflation and energy prices and a porous southern border.
Mr.
Trump said his best polls are against the incumbent president.
“I think right now we have the highest level of enthusiasm that anybody has ever seen for a Republican,” he said.
“The reason is, they are so bad, they are destroying our country.”

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