Haley Digs In After Devastating New Hampshire Loss

Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley stopped far short of conceding anything but a New Hampshire defeat on Tuesday night as she doubled down on her White House aspirations.

Trump raced out to a commanding lead and finished the night with the all-time record for most votes received by a primary candidate in the Granite State. This followed his record-breaking victory in the Iowa caucuses.

Despite her second straight stinging loss to Trump, the former U.N. ambassador pledged to stay in the Republican race. Haley told her supporters that she had no plans to exit the contest.

After congratulating Trump on his victory, Haley told the post-election crowd, “New Hampshire is first in the nation. It is not the last in the nation. This race is far from over.”

The last remaining challenger to Trump’s march to the GOP nomination told her supporters that she is a “fighter.” Haley then characterized herself as the most suitable opponent for Democratic President Joe Biden in November.

Trump, of course, sharply disputed that dubious claim.

He told an enthusiastic crowd Tuesday night, “We’ve won almost every single poll in the last three months against crooked Joe Biden, almost, and she doesn’t win these polls.”

But Haley at least for the moment was undeterred as the primary season shifts to her home state.

She noted, “Every time I’ve run for office in South Carolina, I’ve beaten the political establishment. They’re lined up against me. That’s no surprise. But South Carolina voters don’t want a coronation. They want an election.”

The Palmetto State primary will be held on February 24.

Trump was asked if Haley would bow out after two consecutive defeats. He replied that he could not predict how she would react but added “she should.”

The former president emphasized that his lone remaining major rival acted like she won in New Hampshire. “She didn’t win. She lost. Let’s not have someone take a victory when she had a very bad night. She had a very bad night.” 

New Hampshire was seen as Haley’s greatest chance to change the narrative of the Republican race. The state’s notoriously independent voters were counted on to spring her to a historic upset, but that never materialized.

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