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The Trump machine still can't intimidate Nikki Haley

Photo: Joseph Prezioso Agence France-Presse Far from throwing in the towel, Nikki Haley promised again on Wednesday that she would stay in the electoral race until the Republican convention next July. This is where the Republican candidate will be dubbed.

Fabien Deglise to Concord

1:34 p.m. Analysis

  • United States

The magic of Dixville Notch didn't happen on Tuesday night after all.

This small village in northern New Hampshire, located just 30 km from the Quebec border, traditionally votes at midnight on Election Day, and its handful of residents revealed the name of the winner of the Republican primary flawlessly. between 1968 and 2012, thereby predicting who would win the party's nomination for the November presidential election.

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However, at 12:10 a.m. on January 23, the six registered voters gave their six votes to Nikki Haley, Donald Trump's final rival in the race this year. “When I got up Tuesday morning, I said to myself: it’s done, she just swept it in Dixville Notch, and she’s going to do it statewide as well,” had summed up during the day of Tuesday Mary-Ann Donavan, Republican activist crossed in front of a polling station in Concord. “I hope with all my heart that this is what will happen.”

But the ex-president had already broken the spell in 2016, losing by two votes to three against the former governor of Ohio, John R. Kasich, in this rural corner of the Granite State and then winning the primary. And the New Hampshire surprise didn’t happen. The state's Republican voters, although more independent-minded and more moderate in their conservatism, have in fact given in to the sirens of populism and vindictive and revanchist speeches by massively voting for Donald Trump. The overwhelming favorite won more than 54% of the vote, 10 points ahead of the former United States ambassador to the United Nations.

A result which brings the ex-president dangerously close to a new face-to-face with Joe Biden and strongly compromises the chances of the ex-governor of South Carolina to assert herself in the race as the candidate of the reason seeking to unify the party to better get it out of the chaos into which Donald Trump brought it, she asserts.

“It is now certain that Trump is the choice of the Republicans,” comments Steffen Schmidt, professor emeritus of political science at Iowa State University, in an interview. “He is a heavyweight who is advancing with far too much energy for the other candidates, and who is doing so this time with a very well-organized campaign machine. »

A machine capable of mobilizing his supporters to bring them to the polls and making them forget the strong images of the insurrection he led against the Capitol on January 6, 2021, to reverse the expression of the democratic vote in favor of Joe Biden in the last presidential election, whether the 91 charges against him in four separate criminal cases or his anti-democratic and authoritarian leanings.

The Trump machine still can't intimidate Nikki Haley

Photo: Fabien Deglise Le Devoir A strict Trumpist, Jim Cuthbert does not want to believe that his candidate has any stains on his record.

“The dictator is not Donald Trump, it is Joe Biden who seeks to silence an opponent by sending him to prison,” summarized Jim Cuthbert, a welder in the agri-food industry, last Friday who came to attend a political rally of the deposed president in Concord. “If the attacks against him come to nothing, it is because the accusations made against him are not based on any true information. »

And he added: “Joe Biden didn’t win the election. I am convinced of it. I have seen too many images on television of people tampering with ballot boxes. The evidence is clear. No one can argue with that if they have the slightest bit of an open mind. »

The Democrat won the 2020 presidential election, with a lead of more than 7 million votes in the popular vote. The accusations of electoral fraud still launched to this day by Donald Trump contradict the facts, as revealed by the legal recounts carried out in several states, including those controlled by Republican majorities.

Still in the saddle

Far from throwing in the towel, Nikki Haley promised again on Wednesday that she would stay in the electoral race until the Republican convention next July. This is where the Republican candidate will be dubbed.

She continued her new attacks against the ex-president, whose mental abilities to lead the country she now questions after several confusing statements. During his campaign in New Hampshire on Saturday, he accused the ex-diplomat of having done nothing to ensure the security of the Capitol on January 6, confusing her with Nancy Pelosi, the leader of the US Congress at the time. .

A new television campaign from Nikki Haley also emphasizes the chaos that accompanies Donald Trump and sets the candidate on a new, conservative, reasoned path to get out of the impasses into which the ex-reality TV star has led the country, she says.

The Trump machine still can't intimidate Nikki Haley

Photo: Fabien Deglise Le Devoir In front of a polling station in Concord, Mary-Ann Donavan, a Republican activist, was hopeful Tuesday that the anecdotal vote cast during the night in Dixville Notch would become a reality statewide. This does not happen.

But the path remains complicated for the young 52-year-old politician who, one month before the primary in South Carolina, her home state, and six weeks before the “Super Tuesday», moment when a large bloc of states will decide on this inauguration, is still moving forward in this race lagging behind in the polls against Donald Trump. A framework far from being immutable, however, due to the fact that far from Iowa and New Hampshire, the first stages of this campaign, the voters have not yet fully entered into these electoral concerns.

“The political class and the media would like to crown Donald Trump,” wrote Nikki Haley’s campaign manager, Betsy Ankney, in a note sent to journalists on Tuesday. “They say the race is over. After only 110,000 people voted in an Iowa caucus, they want to raise their hands and say, “Well, I guess it's Trump.” » To this number, 300,000 New Hampshire voters have just been added.

“That’s not how it works,” she added. “About 50% of Republican primary voters want an alternative to Donald Trump. Seventy-five percent of the country wants a choice other than Donald Trump and Joe Biden. And while members of Congress, the press, and several weak guys [a reference here to the withdrawals of Ron DeSantis and Chris Christie from the race] have given up and caved, we have no intention of leaving. »

Political scientist Dean Lacy, a public opinion specialist at Dartmouth College, believes that “even though she lost New Hampshire, Nikki Haley may decide to stay in the race as long as possible, in hopes of becoming the Republican candidate if Donald Trump ultimately could not be” for legal reasons. Or after having been found criminally responsible for his actions in one of the four trials which should soon open against him. For incitement to insurrection. For illegal manipulation of secret documents. For attempting to steal the elections in Georgia.

A scenario that the Republican National Committee has not, however, considered, thus adding uncertainty to an electoral campaign that already does not lack unpredictability.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116