Trump leads first New Hampshire polls since DeSantis’ 2024 withdrawal

Former President Donald Trump is expected to easily win Tuesday’s New Hampshire primary, according to two surveys conducted after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis stepped out of the Republican presidential campaign.

Trump, 77, now faces only one serious Republican challenger, former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, who is trailing in recent polls.

According to new Suffolk University/NBC10 Boston/Boston Globe tracking poll data from 500 people contacted over the weekend, the former president has 57% support while Haley, 52, has 38%.

In an InsiderAdvantage poll of 850 potential voters conducted on Sunday, Trump has a greater edge than Haley, with 62% to 35%.

Trump leads first New Hampshire polls since DeSantis' 2024 withdrawal

The findings signal to an early end to the competitive phase of the party primaries, with Trump winning the Iowa caucuses by over 30 points last week and anticipated to defeat Haley in next month’s South Carolina primary if she even stays in the race that long.

New Hampshire has an open primary system, which allows independent voters to vote in either the Democratic or Republican primaries, giving Haley, who has the support of the Granite State’s Republican governor, Chris Sununu, one of her best chances to prevent Trump’s march to the nomination.

DeSantis, who finished second in Iowa, announced Sunday afternoon that he was dropping out and joining Trump, despite polls showing him with single-digit support in New Hampshire.

The 45-year-old Florida governor had been seen as Trump’s main rival for much of the campaign, with the twice-impeached ex-president facing a quartet of criminal charges — but the DeSantis campaign was marred by awkward moments, including a glitch-filled launch on Twitter Spaces and allegations by footwear experts that he wore lifts in his boots to make himself appear taller.

Trump leads first New Hampshire polls since DeSantis' 2024 withdrawal

After earning DeSantis’ endorsement, Trump announced that he would retire his “DeSanctimonious” nickname for the Florida governor, whom he ruthlessly insulted during the campaign after bestowing similarly memorable sobriquets on his 2016 GOP opponents.

It is unclear how the suddenly less competitive Republican campaign in New Hampshire will affect the state’s Democratic primary. President Biden, who is running for re-election, is not on the ballot due to his insistence that the state give up its first-in-the-nation position in favor of South Carolina.

To avoid an embarrassing upset by long-shot candidates such as self-help author Marianne Williamson, retiring Rep. Dean Phillips (D-Minn.), and comedian Vermin Supreme, Biden backers have launched a write-in campaign sponsored by state Democratic heavyweights.

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