Sun. Mar 3rd, 2024

Until the end, Nikki Haley believed in it. But his defeat, announced in multiple polls, was confirmed in New Hampshire and does not bode well for the rest of the race for the Republican nomination.

Analysis | The end of a race that never really existed | ricaines 2024

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Nikki Haley says the race is far from over, even if she loses in New Hampshire does not bode well for the rest of the race for the Republican nomination.

  • Frédéric Arnould (View profile)Frédéric Arnould

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Trying to be the vehicle of generational change in the Republican Party for the November presidential election and necessarily wanting to attract the anti-Trump vote, the former diplomat will still have managed to convince a certain portion of Republicans and a portion of independent voters.

His score remains honorable, but obviously insufficient to claim to have a viable candidacy between now and the Republican convention which will be held in Wisconsin next July, not even until Super Tuesday, March 5.

Finishing second behind Trump with a narrower gap than expected is good, but it’s still a defeat. The primaries are not, unfortunately for her, the opportunity to put herself on a podium, because there is only one medal: it is gold, and it was Trump who won it . She wanted to leverage a victory or a strong score to have a ripple effect for other primaries and caucuses, but neither materialized.

Nikki Haley may proclaim that she will be in the running to try to win the primaries of her own home state, South Carolina, but mathematical logic dictates the reason: she can't win in her state or any other. Changing such a situation in four weeks is unlikely, or let's say, impossible.

US Elections 2024

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Nikki Haley could have gone harder during her campaign, going for Trump's jugular and confronting him more, but the fear of alienating the Trumpist base, the MAGA, forced her to go at it finickily, with the result that we see today. The race is far from over, she says. But had she really started?

With this observation of defeat against Trump, she will have to ask herself what she wants to do for her political future. She will not be Trump's running mate, who has said so, and she herself did not say she was interested in the position, which is above all ceremonial, what's more, second fiddle to a plenipotentiary Trump on ideas and way of managing politics.

Even if Nikki Haley persists in prolonging the suspense for a few more days, or even a few weeks, Donald Trump will inevitably find himself alone in this race that he has already won. Does this mean that primaries and caucuses are no longer necessary?

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Donald Trump would have liked to close out the Republican presidential race, but still has to go up against Nikki Haley as long as she remains in the race .

According to party regulations, the primaries must still be held, since a winner must be determined officially. Trump actually needs to get at least 1,215 of the 2,429 delegates to secure the inevitable coronation. We must therefore go through these stages of the primaries.

Super Tuesday in March should probably offer him on a golden platter these precious votes of delegates who will be vested.

The real inauguration will take place next summer, but in fact, Donald Trump has already started his campaign for the White House.

And it doesn't matter his trials and possible convictions, he will be there, on November 5, facing the Democratic candidate who will be, until proven otherwise, Joe Biden.

The Democratic president is probably relieved by the Republican choice, since another, younger candidate with less questionable baggage would have been much more dangerous against him. He said that with this victory in New Hampshire, the influence of the MAGA movement was confirmed and that the Republican Party became the party of Trump.

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The choice of Donald Trump as Republican opponent for the presidential election suits Joe Biden, who still believes he can beat him.

He maintains that having already beaten Trump, he will be able to repeat this feat of 2020. The problem is that he is no longer the same man, four years later. With his more rigid approach, and his increasingly obvious hesitations in public, he could lack enthusiasm during this campaign which will be particularly demanding for both men. And, above all, unlike 2020, where campaign events were reduced to their simplest expression due to the pandemic, the 2024 campaign risks being grueling.

Donald Trump is not getting any younger either. In recent weeks, the inconsistency of certain comments in his partisan rallies has caused concern. He confuses Nancy Pelosi and Nikki Haley, mixes the eras of Bush, Obama and Biden. Biden's team understands this well and has already used excerpts from Haley's criticism of Trump to run negative ads against the former Republican president.

The campaign will be vicious on both sides on the ground, a trench war where two Americas will clash with voters who will have to choose a side, for better or for worse.

  • Frédéric Arnould (View profile)Frédéric ArnouldFollow

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