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Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has risen to second place in two polls of the first-in-the-nation primary state of New Hampshire published this week — though former President Donald Trump maintains his hold on the Granite State race.
A Washington Post/Monmouth University poll out Friday showed Haley at 18% of the vote among Republican primary voters, with Trump at 46%.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis — who has increasingly sparred with Haley in recent weeks — slipped to 7%, coming in fifth place behind former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (11%) and biotech mogul Vivek Ramaswamy (8%).
Meanwhile, a CNN/University of New Hampshire poll of likely primary voters showed Trump with 42% support followed by Haley at 20%, then Christie (14%), DeSantis (9%) and Ramaswamy (8%).
DeSantis still holds second place in the mythical national Republican primary with 14.8% support compared to Haley’s 9.6% and Trump’s 59.0%, according to RealClearPolitics.
The Washington Post/Monmouth poll showed 20% of Granite Staters would pick DeSantis if their first choice dropped out, the most of any Republican contender. Haley was next in the second-choice sweepstakes at 17%, followed by Ramaswamy (11%) and Christie (9%).
Both polls indicated Trump’s lead was stable, with 80% of the 77-year-old former president’s supporters saying in the Washington Post/Monmouth poll that they were “definitely” voting for him and just 18% saying they would consider another option.
By contrast, most Haley and DeSantis supporters said they were open to another candidate, with 55% of Haley backers and 49% of DeSantis fans saying they were willing to consider someone else.
In the CNN/UNH survey, 83% of Trump supporters said they had “definitely decided” on their choice of candidate. Of the other candidates, Ramaswamy enjoyed the most solid base of support, with 61% saying they would back him no matter what. Around one-quarter of Haley and Christie supporters said they were settled in their choice while only 15% of DeSantis supporters said the same.
The New England state has held the first primary election of every cycle since 1920, and that will continue next year when voters cast their ballots for the Republican and Democratic candidate of their choice on Jan. 23.
New Hampshire‘s scheduling defied the Democratic National Committee’s new 2024 calendar, which places South Carolina as the first primary, to be held Feb. 3.
President Biden chose to not file for the New Hampshire primary ballot due to the state’s disagreement with the DNC, and can only be voted for as a write-in candidate.
The CNN New Hampshire primary poll surveyed 994 likely Republican voters Nov. 10-14 and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.
The Washington Post/Monmouth poll surveyed 606 likely Republican primary voters Nov. 9-14. The margin of error was plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.