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Haley Loses Nevada Primary Even Without Trump On Ballot

Holland McKinnie
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Nevada has not received much attention this Republican presidential primary cycle due to a dispute over whether it would maintain a traditional caucus, which the GOP favors, or switch to a primary election as mandated by a Democratic-led state legislature.

As a result, a primary was held on Tuesday without front-runner Donald Trump’s name on the ballot. He will be participating in a caucus later in the week.

Even without Trump listed as an option, however, his only serious rival, former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, collected votes from fewer than one-third of those who participated in the primary.


More than twice as many voters — 63% in all — chose “none of these candidates” as their preference.

Of course, the Haley campaign attempted to downplay the embarrassing result, claiming that the election had been “rigged for Trump” and insisting that the campaign expended neither “a dime nor an ounce of energy” in the state.

“Truly not sure what the Trump team is out to there, but they seem pretty spun up about it,” said Haley campaign manager Betsy Ankney. “But we are focused on South Carolina.”

Haley, who previously served as the governor of South Carolina, has set high expectations for her performance in the Feb. 24 primary, but Trump has maintained a commanding lead over her even in her home state.


A recent Washington Post/Monmouth University poll found Trump with a 26-point lead over Haley in South Carolina. 

Haley seems to be maintaining a defiant attitude in her long-shot bid to become the 2024 GOP presidential nominee, however, and Ankney stressed that it is still too early in the process to presume that Trump will emerge victorious.

“We are 20 days out from South Carolina,” she said earlier this week. “We’re a month out from Super Tuesday. Nikki is the last one standing between the American people and the rematch that no one wants in Trump versus Biden.”

Trump jabbed his rival in a social media post early Wednesday, calling it a “bad night for Nikki Haley” and referencing her remarks after an 11-point loss in the New Hampshire primary, writing: “Watch, she’ll soon claim Victory!”