Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has overtaken Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis for second place behind Donald Trump in the 2024 New Hampshire Republican presidential primary, according to a poll released Monday.
In the latest New Hampshire Institute of Politics (NHIOP) poll, Haley has 15% of the support and DeSantis slipped to third with 11%, 18 percentage points lower than what he polled in March, and just a point ahead of former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.
The online poll was of 931 New Hampshire Republican presidential primary likely voters and conducted from Sept. 19-20. It has a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percentage points, with a confidence interval of 95%.
The boost to Haley comes at an opportune time, with the second GOP presidential primary debate set to take place Wednesday night in Simi Valley, California. Trump, who has a commanding lead in New Hampshire at 45%, will not be attending the debate.
Haley had a net favorability rating of plus-37 percentage points, second only to Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., at plus-51. Trump was third with plus-32%. Among those who had an unfavorable view of Trump, Haley led Christie 32% to 29%.
Even though Scott had the highest net favorable rating, he pulled in 3% overall in the poll, good enough for sixth place. Multimillionaire entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy was fifth at 6%.
Haley and Trump easily defeat President Joe Biden in a head-to-head matchup, but Haley by a wider margin, 74%-8% to Trump's 74%-14%. Scott would win 76%-10% and DeSantis 73%-13%.
"As in 2016, opposition to Trump is diluted over several candidates, preventing the consolidation that would be necessary to deny him a third straight nomination," said Neil Levesque, executive director of the NHIOP. "Furthermore, a fractured field means the eventual Republican nominee will have to work to consolidate their support against President Joe Biden if he stands for reelection."
DeSantis, in an interview with Newsmax earlier Monday, said national polls are narrative-driven in order to get Trump in and Biden out.
"I think they're trying to do two things: I think the corporate press does want Trump to be the nominee," DeSantis said. "I think you see that in the coverage of that. I think you also see that in how they attack me. But I also think they're trying to get the Democrats to dislodge Biden."
Nationally, DeSantis remains in second place behind Trump at 13.8% in the FiveThirtyEight aggregate polling. Trump leads with 55.2%; Ramaswamy is third at 6.1%, and Haley fourth at 5.6%.
Mark Swanson, a Newsmax writer and editor, has nearly three decades of experience covering news, culture and politics.
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