Trump Cruises To South Carolina Victory In Race For Republican Nomination

Donald Trump swept South Carolina’s Republican primary on Saturday, defeating competitor Nikki Haley in her home state and continuing his march to the nomination and a rematch with Joe Biden in November.

Trump swept the first four major nominating elections, transforming a year of record-breaking polling into a seemingly unassailable lead heading into the “Super Tuesday” 15-state voting fiesta in 10 days.

Haley had sworn to fight whatever of the outcome, but Trump, eager to move on from the primary to the general election, made no mention of her during his victory address, instead focusing on Biden.

“We’re going to come up here on November 5 and we’re going to look Joe Biden directly in the eyes and say, Joe, you’re fired. “Get out,” Trump said to shouts at his victory party in the state capital, Columbia.

Haley has often questioned the 77-year-old former president’s mental health and warned that another Trump presidency would bring “chaos,” but her efforts appear to have done nothing to harm his reputation among Republicans.

The margin of victory was not immediately evident, but US networks felt confident enough to call the race within seconds of the polls closing, implying that there was little uncertainty about the outcome.

According to David Darmofal, a politics professor at the University of South Carolina, the rapidity of Trump’s anticipated victory confirms him as “effectively the presumptive Republican nominee for president.”

“This swift call is a terrible outcome for former Governor Haley in her home state. The rapidity of the call would most certainly increase pressure on her to withdraw from the race,” he told AFP.

Haley, South Carolina’s popular governor in the 2010s and the only woman to enter the Republican primary, was hoping to outperform expectations in her own backyard and ride into Super Tuesday with the wind in her sails.

However, she was never able to compete in a terrain that favored Trump’s blend of right-wing “America first” populism and personal grievance over the four criminal indictments and numerous civil cases he faces.

Trump had already won Iowa by 30 points and New Hampshire by 10, and a dispute in Nevada left the real estate magnate unchallenged in the first official contest in the western United States.


‘Not giving up’

Biden responded to the South Carolina election results with a brief written statement, warning Americans of “the threat Donald Trump poses to our future as Americans grapple with the damage he left behind.”

Meanwhile, as she applauded Trump in her concession speech, Haley reminded supporters that she had previously pledged to continue fighting, regardless of the outcome.

“I am a woman of my word. “I’m not giving up this fight because the majority of Americans oppose both Donald Trump and Joe Biden,” she declared.

Trump advisers have made it clear that they want Haley out before the Republican National Convention in July, and they anticipate the party to rally around the front-runner ahead of the first of his criminal hearings on March 25.

Haley, a classic conservative who believes in small government and a strong foreign policy, has suggested that a Trump presidency would be fraught with scandal from the start.

Her major point — that polls shows her outperforming Trump in hypothetical bouts with Biden — may have fallen on deaf ears, but she has pledged to remain in the race at least until Super Tuesday.

According to analysts, she is preparing for a future 2028 presidential run and is ready to jump in if Trump is forced to withdraw due to legal or health issues.

“Nikki Haley’s an incredible role model,” said one Republican voter, Julie Taylor. “She’s not giving up, she’s showing strength and grace and courage.”

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