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Nikki Haley suspends Republican presidential campaign

The former South Carolina governor and U.N. ambassador announced she was dropping out of the race, but fell short of endorsing former Pres. Trump.
Nikki Haley to suspend Republican presidential campaign Wednesday
Posted at 6:59 AM, Mar 06, 2024

After a weak showing in Super Tuesday contests, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has suspended her bid for president, leaving former President Donald Trump as the only remaining GOP candidate in the race. 

Haley made the announcement Wednesday morning with a short speech, calling for unity in the Republican party. However, she fell short of endorsing Trump, at least for now.

"It is now up to Donald Trump to earn the votes of those in our party and beyond who did not support him, and I hope he does that," she said to a crowd of supporters. "At its best, politics is about bringing people into your cause, not turning them away. And our conservative cause badly needs more people. This is now his time for choosing."

SEE MORE: Exit polls show differences between Trump, Haley Super Tuesday voters

Haley did manage to notch one win in Vermont on Super Tuesday, but fell to Trump in all other Republican contests that were held. The former president lauded his dominant performance on social media, saying Haley was "TROUNCED" as he moves closer to securing the GOP nomination. 

"I'd like to thank my family, friends, and the Great Republican Party for helping me to produce, by far, the most successful Super Tuesday in HISTORY," Trump said in a statement. "And would further like to invite all of the Haley supporters to join the greatest movement in the history of our Nation."

Haley, who was the United Nations ambassador under Trump, was the last person standing between the former president and the Republican presidential nomination and had vowed to stay in the race through at least Super Tuesday. However, despite the $115 million her campaign and allied group have spent in the race, Haley's message about being the next generational leader in the Republican Party has failed to resonate with most voters.  

Her decision to drop out of the race also comes a week after she lost financial support from one of her most influential donors. The billionaire-backed Koch Network, founded by brothers Charles and David Koch, withdrew support for Haley's campaign after a disheartening primary loss to Trump in her home state of South Carolina.

SEE MORE: The presidential rematch fewer Americans want moves closer to reality

To win the GOP nomination, a candidate must secure 1,215 delegates in primary races. After Super Tuesday, Decision Desk HQ projects Trump is now just 200 short of the delegates needed to win the nomination, with 1,015, while Haley had secured just 88 so far.

The Trump campaign has predicted they will secure those 1,215 during a group of primaries held March 12 — the first day on which a majority of Republican delegates will have been chosen. 

It remains unclear what plans Haley has for her political future. There have been rumors about the possibility of her launching an independent third-party bid for the White House, but it's an idea she has repeatedly rejected.

"I’m a conservative Republican. I have said many, many times I would not run as an independent," she said Tuesday in an interview with Fox News. "I would not run as No Labels because I am a Republican, and that’s who I’ve always been. That’s what I’m going to do. And so that’s my focus."


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