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Nikki Haley gives angry interview amid calls for her to exit presidential race

By Stew Davidson
January 24, 2024

In a spirited exchange on Fox News, Nikki Haley asserted her determination to continue her presidential campaign, disregarding the sense of inevitability concerning Donald Trump, who leads significantly in the polls.

During a candid conversation Haley expressed her unwavering intent to stay in the presidential race, despite facing a substantial lead by Trump in the polls.

The interview followed the latest New Hampshire poll that placed Trump 20 points ahead of Haley, just before the state's primary. Despite this, Haley voiced her discontent with the media's portrayal of Trump as the pre-determined nominee, emphasizing that the American people seek a genuine choice in the upcoming election, as the Daily Mail reported.

Media portrayal and public opinion: Haley's critique

Haley stated to the Fox & Friends hosts:

I don't care how much you all want to coronate Donald Trump. At the end of the day, that's not what Americans want.

Her remarks triggered a tense moment with host Brian Kilmeade, who questioned Haley's view of the media as adversarial toward her campaign.

Haley responded assertively, criticizing the media's narrative and the political establishment's pressure for candidates to withdraw in favor of Trump, which she believes undermines democratic principles. She emphasized her commitment to offering Americans a true alternative to a Trump-Biden rematch.

She said:

I have looked at the media saying 'this is Donald Trump's to have.' Look at the political class all coalescing and saying everybody needs to get out. That's not democracy.

Attempting to defuse the situation, Fox host Ainsley Earhardt acknowledged the network's efforts to maintain journalistic accuracy.

Haley, undeterred, underlined her anticipation of a strong performance in New Hampshire and her campaign's focus on the upcoming South Carolina primary, dismissing any interest in a vice-presidential position and stating, "I don't play for second."

Trump's rising momentum and Haley's steadfast stance

Meanwhile, the political landscape has shifted significantly with the withdrawal of Ron DeSantis from the race, boosting Trump's campaign.

The former president has garnered widespread support and endorsements, staging rallies that showcased unity with former rivals, described by a campaign aide as "Avengers Assemble."

These developments have positioned Trump favorably in the race, potentially setting him up for a repeat of his dominant performance in the Iowa caucus and solidifying his status as the frontrunner for the Republican nomination.

The latest poll figures illustrate the uphill battle Haley faces, with Trump leading by 20 points according to the Partners poll.

A surge of support from independent and Democrat voters in New Hampshire could offer Haley a glimmer of hope, yet the gap remains formidable, especially following DeSantis's exit, which has significantly bolstered Trump's campaign.

Challenges ahead for Haley's campaign

James Johnson of J.L. Partners conveyed the daunting scenario for Haley, highlighting Trump's exceptional lead and the lack of enthusiasm among Haley's supporters.

He suggested that the primary contest could effectively conclude if the poll's predictions hold true. Notably, this tough campaign period for Haley follows her decision to ban DailyMail reporters and photographers from her campaign events, a move that may have influenced her relationship with the media.

Trump has openly encouraged Haley to withdraw from the race, underscoring the importance of unity in the Republican Party to challenge Joe Biden effectively in the upcoming election.

Despite this, Haley has shown resilience, insisting on continuing her campaign at least until the South Carolina primary, despite lagging in polls even in her home state.

Haley's uphill battle in a polarized political environment

However, the challenge for Haley is not only about gaining ground against Trump but also about the nature of her support base.

According to poll data, a significant portion of Haley's support stems from a desire to prevent Trump's nomination rather than a direct endorsement of her policies or candidacy. This dynamic, coupled with low enthusiasm levels, narrows Haley's potential voter pool.

In contrast, Trump's supporters display high energy and commitment, drawn by his assertive leadership style, economic agenda, and achievements during his first term.

The unfolding political drama indicates Trump's commanding presence in the election, overshadowing his opponents, including Haley.

His prior victory in Iowa and potential success in New Hampshire could render him nearly unstoppable in the quest for the Republican nomination. Haley's prospects hinge on a significant shift in voter sentiment, a task made more daunting by the prevailing political currents and the palpable momentum behind Trump's campaign.


  • Nikki Haley remains steadfast in her presidential campaign, challenging the media's narrative and emphasizing the need for a real choice for Americans in the upcoming election.
  • Despite the daunting polls and Trump's consolidating support, Haley continues to voice her commitment to the race, focusing on key states like New Hampshire and South Carolina.
  • The dynamics of support in the Republican primaries reveal a polarized environment, with Haley's base largely motivated by opposition to Trump rather than affirmative support for her policies.
  • Trump's campaign, invigorated by the withdrawal of key rivals and strong grassroots support, poses a formidable challenge to Haley's aspirations, underscoring the arduous path she faces in altering the current trajectory of the race.