Despite SC Loss, Presidential Candidate Nikki Haley Forges Ahead

Her chances of securing the 2024 Republican presidential nomination are vanishing fast, but former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) isn’t giving up, at least not yet.

After suffering defeats against former President Donald Trump in Iowa, New Hampshire, and the U.S. Virgin Islands and losing to “none of the above” in the Nevada primary, Haley has now been defeated in her home state of South Carolina.

Trump won South Carolina’s Republican primary on Saturday, beating Haley in her home state and further consolidating his path to a third straight GOP nomination.

Trump has now swept every contest that counted for Republican delegates, adding to previous wins in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Haley is facing growing pressure to leave the race but says she’s not going anywhere despite losing the state where she was governor from 2011 to 2017.

A 2020 rematch between Trump and President Joe Biden is becoming increasingly inevitable. Haley has vowed to stay in the race through at least the batch of primaries on March 5, known as Super Tuesday, but was unable to impact Trump’s momentum in her home state despite holding far more campaign events and arguing that the indictments against Trump will hamstring him against Biden.

“I have never seen the Republican Party so unified as it is. You can celebrate for about 15 minutes, but then we have to get back to work,” Trump declared, taking the stage for his victory speech.

Trump was dominant across the state, even leading in Lexington County, which Haley represented in the state Legislature. Many Trump-backing South Carolinians, even some who previously supported Haley during her time as governor, weren’t willing to give her a home-state vote.

“She’s done some good things. I don’t think she’s ready to tackle a candidate like Trump. I don’t think many people can,” Davis Paul, 36, said about Haley as he waited for Trump at a recent rally.

About an hour later, Haley took the stage and said, “What I saw today was South Carolina’s frustration with our country’s direction. I’ve seen that same frustration nationwide.”

“I don’t believe Donald Trump can beat Joe Biden. I said earlier this week that no matter what happens in South Carolina, I would continue to run. I’m a woman of my word,” she added.

Former President Trump and President Biden are expected to face off in the November presidential election.