Trump wins New Hampshire primary

Though Trump won handily, his margin of victory was smaller than polling predicted. With slightly more than half the expected vote counted, Trump led Haley, 54 to 45 percent.

Haley’s speech — and declaration that she plans to continue her campaign — clearly annoyed Trump.

“I said, wow, she’s doing a speech like she won. She didn’t win. She lost,” Trump said. “Let’s not have somebody take a victory when she had a very bad night. She had a very bad night.”

Last week Trump had a notably magnanimous tone after winning the Iowa caucus. During that speech, Trump called for unity in the party. This time, Trump declared, “I don’t get too angry, I get even.”

“We are going to win this. We have no choice. If we don’t win, I think our country is finished,” Trump said.

At Trump’s victory party at the Sheraton hotel in Nashua, supporters cheered when big-screen TVs carrying Fox News showed the race had been called. A smattering of boos could be heard when the TVs broadcasted Haley’s remarks. Chris LaCivita, a senior Trump adviser, posted an image of Haley on X. “Look up ‘delusional’,” LaCivita wrote, “and this is what you will find.”

“This race is over!” a fundraising email sent to Trump supporters declared on Tuesday night.

Trump’s commanding victories in the earliest-voting states all but extinguished any remaining doubt that he is fully in control of the Republican Party, even as he remains enmeshed in civil and criminal trials in multiple jurisdictions.

In recent weeks Haley effectively staked her candidacy on New Hampshire, where she earned the support of the popular governor, Chris Sununu, and the storied Union Leader newspaper. The former U.N. ambassador tried to appeal to Trump-weary independent and moderate voters by calling the former president an agent of “chaos.”

Trump attacked Haley viciously. He mocked her Indian first name and falsely suggested she was ineligible to be president because she wasn’t born in the United States. Haley’s parents emigrated from India and settled in South Carolina in the 1960s.

Trump moved aggressively in recent days to spotlight the support he has received from prominent Republicans, looking to convey that the party is rallying around him. On the eve of the primary, he campaigned in Laconia with three former rivals-turned-supporters — Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.), North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum and Vivek Ramaswamy. And this week, he won the support of his former arch nemesis, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who dropped out of the race and endorsed the former president.

“Nikki Haley said she’s running to stop the reelection of Harris-Biden. Yet, without a viable path to victory, every day she stays in this race is another day she delivers to the Harris-Biden campaign. It’s time for unity, it’s time to take the fight to the Democrats, and for Nikki Haley: it’s time to drop out,” Taylor Budowich, CEO of the Trump super PAC Make America Great Again Inc., said in a statement after the race was called.

On Saturday night, Trump was joined onstage at a rally by nearly every major statewide Republican from South Carolina, Haley’s home state.

The contest now turns to Nevada, where Trump is running essentially unopposed in next month’s caucuses. Haley is not appearing on the Nevada caucus ballot, which is the only contest in the state allocating delegates. From there, the campaign will head to South Carolina on Feb. 24, where polls show the ex-president with a wide lead.

Although Trump handily won among registered Republicans in New Hampshire, the results also demonstrate the hurdles Trump could face in a general election. Haley performed marginally better among voters registered as undeclared according to exit polls, and those independent voters will be critical to any win in November.

Trump’s aides have argued that Haley should drop out of the race before those votes take place and if she does not, then be prepared for her campaign to be “demolished and embarrassed.” The day before the primary, the ex-president’s son, Don. Jr., called for her to drop out even if she won in New Hampshire.

Appearing at Trump’s victory party on Tuesday evening, Scott — who was appointed to the Senate by Haley — made clear it was time for the former ambassador to get out of the race.

“I think it’s time for Republicans to rally around Donald Trump. Period,” Scott said.

Haley’s team has said it will continue on to her home state and has set up a number of prominent fundraisers to help finance a bid.

“While members of Congress, the press and many of the weak-kneed fellas who ran for president are giving up and giving in — we aren’t going anywhere,” Haley’s campaign manager Betsy Ankney said in a memo issued Tuesday.

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