Nevada primary takeaways 2024: Nikki Haley loses to ‘none of the candidates’

Donald Trump beats Nikki Haley in New Hampshire

Republican presidential contender Nikki Haley only managed a second place finish in the Nevada Republican primary on Tuesday, suffering the humiliation of scoring fewer votes than the “none of these candidates” box on Silver State ballot papers.

Donald Trump was not in contention in the state-run primary but will instead appear in Nevada’s GOP-organised caucus on Thursday, where his only challenger is Texas pastor Ryan Binkley and which he is expected to win easily, picking up a further 26 delegates and further cementing his dominance of the race for the Republican Party’s presidential nomination.

Ms Haley’s defeat did not cost her any delegates but does severely weaken her claim to be able to mount a serious challenge to the front-runner.

It also places even greater pressure on her performance in South Carolina when that state’s primary arrives on 24 February.

Ms Haley is a native of the Palmetto State and served as its governor before joining Mr Trump’s administration as ambassador to the United Nations but is nevertheless trailing her old boss in the polls by a wide margin.

Joe Biden meanwhile comfortably won the Nevada Democratic primary on Tuesday, beating author Marianne Williamson as was widely expected.


Haley hits out at Republican chaos: ‘The definition of insanity’

The candidate is continuing to ramp up her criticism of Maga Republican dysfunction as her flailing campaign enters its “nothing to lose” phase.

She’s completely right here, the libs will love it but will her message appeal to moderate conservatives in sufficient quantities to make any kind of a difference in South Carolina?

Joe Sommerlad7 February 2024 17:15


Trump adviser posts meme mocking Haley’s habit of claiming victory even in defeat

Because Dan Scavino doesn’t know anyone else who would behave in such a manner, now does he?

Joe Sommerlad7 February 2024 16:15


Fake Biden AI calls traced to Texas company, says New Hampshire AG

New Hampshire officials say they have found the source of an illegal voter suppression campaign that used an AI-generated imitation of President Biden’s voice.

State attorney general John Formella has named two Texas companies as the entities responsible for the fake calls.

He ordered Life Corporation, the alleged creator of the messages, and Lingo Telecom, the alleged service provider, to immediately cease all violations of New Hampshire election law and cooperate with an investigation.

Joe Sommerlad7 February 2024 15:15


Biden wins Nevada primary as he keeps focus on Trump for 2020 rematch

President Joe Biden won an easy victory in Nevada’s Democratic primary on Tuesday over his lone prominent rival in the state, eccentric self-help author Marianne Williamson.

Congressman Dean Phillips, another Democrat running for the party’s nomination, did not participate in the state.

President Biden is all but guaranteed to win the nominating contest out right, having now won Nevada, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

John Bowden has this report.

Joe Sommerlad7 February 2024 14:15


Trump mocks Haley after humiliating Nevada primary defeat

Ever the gallant victor, Trump has taken to social media to deride his rival for the Republican presidential nomination after she lost, humiliatingly, to “none of the above” in the state’s primary yesterday.

The loss did not cost Nikki Haley any delegates (Trump is likely to pick up all 26 of those in the Silver State’s competing GOP caucus tomorrow) but does nothing for her claims to be able to mount a serious challenge to the front-runner.

Here’s John Bowden with the full story.

Joe Sommerlad7 February 2024 13:15


Biden lambasts Trump ‘for trying to divide’ US

After his victory in the Nevada primary, Joe Biden immediately set his sights on Donald Trump, saying that the former US president “is trying to divide us, not unite us; drag us back to the past, not lead us to the future.”

Biden appeared on the ballot along with self-help author Marianne Williamson and other lesser-known Democratic challengers but Minnesota congressman Dean Phillips missed the filing deadline so could not take part.

Namita Singh7 February 2024 12:15


Why does Nevada have ‘none of these candidates’ ballot option

Nevada lawmakers added “none of these candidates” as an option in all statewide races as a way post-Watergate for voters to participate but express dissatisfaction with their choices.

“None” can’t win an elected office but it came in first in primary congressional contests in 1976 and 1978. It also finished ahead of both George Bush and Edward Kennedy in Nevada’s 1980 presidential primaries.

Namita Singh7 February 2024 11:15


Why Haley did not campaign in Nevada

Nikki Haley had said beforehand she was going to “focus on the states that are fair” and did not campaign in the Nevada in the weeks leading up to the caucuses. Her campaign wrote off the primary results with a reference to Nevada’s famous casino industry.

“Even Donald Trump knows that when you play penny slots the house wins,” spokesperson Olivia Perez-Cubas said. “We didn’t bother to play a game rigged for Trump. We’re full steam ahead in South Carolina and beyond.”

Republican presidential candidate, former UN ambassador Nikki Haley speaks during a campaign rally at the Indigo Hall and Events venue on 5 February 2024 in Spartanburg, South Carolina

(Getty Images)

Ms Haley’s campaign also balked at the $55,000 fee the Nevada GOP was charging candidates to participate in the caucuses.

“We have not spent a dime nor an ounce of energy on Nevada. We made the decision early on that we were not going to pay $55,000 to a Trump entity to participate in a process that is rigged for Trump,” Ms Haley’s campaign manager Betsy Ankney told reporters on Monday. “Nevada is not and has not been our focus.”

Namita Singh7 February 2024 10:15


Why AP called the Nevada GOP primary for ‘none of these candidates’

The top vote-getter in Tuesday’s Republican presidential primary in Nevada wasn’t former UN ambassador Nikki Haley, the only major candidate on the ballot still in the race.

Instead, Nevada voters mounted a ballot-box protest and gave the most votes to “None of these candidates,” a ballot option required by state law.

The Associated Press declared “none of these candidates” the winner at 12.01am based on initial vote results that showed it with a significant lead over Ms Haley in seven counties across the state, including in the two most populous counties.

At the time the race was called, “none of these candidates” led with about 60 per cent of the vote. Ms Haley trailed with 33 per cent.

Republican presidential candidate, former UN ambassador Nikki Haley speaks during a campaign rally at the Indigo Hall and Events venue on 5 February 2024

(Getty Images)

For her to overcome “none of these candidates” and take the lead, she would have needed to win by an overwhelming margin in the ballots left to be counted. But she wasn’t getting that level of support anywhere in the state. In fact, in the county where she was doing best, she wasn’t ahead — she trailed “None of these candidates” by double digits in Washoe County.

Former president Donald Trump did not appear on the ballot.

Governor Joe Lombardo, Nevada’s Republican chief executive, endorsed Mr Trump and publicly indicated his intent to cast his ballot for “None of these candidates.” A significant number of Mr Trump supporters appear to have followed the governor’s lead. Initial returns showed “None of these candidates” leading in seven counties that Mr Trump carried in his 2016 Nevada caucus win.

Namita Singh7 February 2024 09:15


Why AP called the Nevada Democratic primary for Joe Biden

President Joe Biden has easily won Tuesday’s Democratic presidential primary in Nevada, his second lopsided victory in four days over a mostly unknown field of challengers.

The Associated Press declared Mr Biden the winner at 11.39pm based on initial vote results in Washoe County, the second largest in the state, that showed him eclipsing the rest of the field.

At the time the race was called, Mr Biden led with about 89 per cent of the vote, with “None of these candidates” a very distant second at about six per cent.

Self-help author Marianne Williamson was at about three per cent. US representative Dean Phillips of Minnesota opted to skip the first-in the-west contest in Nevada and did not appear on the ballot.

Joe Biden speaks during a Black History Month reception at the East Room of the White House on 6 February 2024

(Getty Images)

Since declaring Mr Biden the winner, vote results in seven additional counties confirmed his win, most notably in Clark County, home of Las Vegas and by far Nevada’s most populous.

As of 1am, Mr Biden led in Clark with about 90 per cent of the vote, a vast improvement over the 24 per cent he received there in the 2020 Democratic caucuses. That year, his showing in Clark was enough to earn him second place statewide because of its massive population, even though he finished third or worse in the rest of the state.

Although results from the caucuses don’t provide an exact point of comparison, yesterday’s primary results do indicate the president now enjoys a much broader base of support in Nevada than he did against a highly competitive field four years ago.

Namita Singh7 February 2024 08:29

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