Trump Trounces Haley In South Carolina Primary

On Saturday, Donald Trump logged another primary victory when he defeated former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley in the South Carolina primary, Haley’s home state, by over 20 percentage points.

The election was called by the networks almost immediately after polls closed, and Trump did not wait long after that to take the stage for his victory speech.

Trump declared, “I have never seen the Republican party as unified as it is right now.” He added that he is looking forward to what seems like an inevitable rematch with President Joe Bidden. “We’re going to be up here on November 5, and we’re going to say Joe, get out, Joe, you’re fired,” he said.

The 2020 rematch seems more and more inevitable as Trump has trounced Haley in the four major primaries – Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and now South Carolina, winning them all by double-digit points.

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Haley has vowed to stay in the race until at least Super Tuesday on March 5, when over a third of Republican delegates will be awarded.

In her concession speech in South Carolina, the former U.N. Ambassador reiterated her plans to continue her campaign. “I said earlier this week that no matter what happens in South Carolina, I would continue to run. I’m a woman of my word.”

Haley’s campaign plans to launch a multi-million dollar ad buy in the lead-up to Super Tuesday, but many see her loss in her home state as the kiss of death. It’s not often that a presidential campaign survives a loss in its home state. In 2016, Marco Rubio suspended his campaign when he lost Florida to Trump.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R- South Carolina), in a statement made just before he appeared on stage with Trump celebrating the primary victory, said, “I think the sooner [Haley withdraws], the better for her, the better for the party.”

While Trump will assuredly be the Republican candidate in 2024, he still has some major political hurdles to clear. Four active criminal investigations against him have not siphoned off any fervor from his base, but according to exit polling in South Carolina, more than a third of Republican voters said if Trump were to be convicted of any of the 91 charges brought against him, he would be unfit for office.

Clark Franzman

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