Anti-Trump GOP Senators Currently Planning to Shift Focus to Nikki Haley in Effort to Take Down Trump -
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Anti-Trump GOP Senators Currently Planning to Shift Focus to Nikki Haley in Effort to Take Down Trump

Anti-Trump Republican senators are reportedly starting to see former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, rather than Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, as their top choice to defeat former President Donald Trump.

Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) is one of those encouraging Republicans to come together in support of an alternative to Trump, and currently, he seems to consider Haley as that individual.

“She has better prospects than he does because her numbers are going up and his are coming down. Usually, you want to place your bet on someone who is doing better,” he said.

Other Republican senators have also publicly recognized Haley as a contender who is “starting to move ahead” in the race.

“I do believe that she’s starting to move ahead. To use the [Formula 1 racing] analogy, she’s probably in the P2 position now, moved up ahead of DeSantis,” Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC) said following the Koch family-backed PAC Americans for Prosperity backing the presidential hopeful.

“If DeSantis doesn’t perform in Iowa, and she does, then it sets her up for New Hampshire, and it becomes an interesting contest,” Tillis, who is not making an endorsement, continued, noting that DeSantis “peaked early and probably was playing it a little bit too safe at a time when he could have had a breakout moment.”

“Using a Florida, NASA analogy, I think the launch window has passed,” he added.

Senator Mike Rounds (R-SD) also agreed that Haley is gaining momentum at a crucial point in the race.

“After the Iowa caucuses, after New Hampshire, I think this will be narrowed down to a two-person race,” he said, adding that Haley has “momentum.”

Senator John Thune (R-SD) also remarked that Haley seems to be positioning herself as the alternative to Trump, stating that she “acquitted herself really well in the debates, and I think has done well out on the stump.”

“Part of running for national office — especially in those early states — is relatability, and I think she’s got a good retail political style. Seems to be winning over some people,” he said.

These sentiments are not novel, as establishment figures are increasingly voicing their public support for Haley.

Former House Speaker Paul Ryan, for example, was recently caught trying to guide presidential endorsements toward Haley. He encouraged Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI), chairman of the Select Committee on the Strategic Competition Between the United States and the Chinese Communist Party, to publicly back her.

“I think now is the time for a guy like you to endorse,” he reportedly wrote to Gallagher, who is not endorsing anyone in the race. “Plus, Her foreign policy/world views track closest to yours. She brings the most excitement. I like Ron, but don’t think he is the growth stock Niki [sic] is. Just following up per our talk [in] September. Go Packers!” he added.

The rivalry between the Haley and DeSantis campaigns is intensifying as the field narrows, yet neither has managed to significantly impact former President Donald Trump’s lead, both nationally and in early primary states. However, the competition between the two is escalating, with Haley’s campaign investing millions in New Hampshire and Iowa as their respective election days approach.

As per RealClearPolitics, Haley presently holds the second position in South Carolina, ahead of DeSantis in third place. Additionally, she secures the second spot in New Hampshire, where DeSantis has slipped to fourth place. However, he maintains an advantage in Iowa, leading Haley by an average of three points in the Hawkeye State.

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