ABC News Cancels New Hampshire Debate After Haley Refuses Another Head-To-Head With DeSantis

"The next debate I do will either be with Donald Trump or with Joe Biden."
Nikki Haley, former ambassador to the United Nations and 2024 Republican presidential candidate, speaks during the 2024 Iowa Republican caucuses at Franklin Jr. High School in Des Moines, Iowa, US, on Monday, Jan. 15, 2024. Former US President Donald Trump cruised to victory in the Iowa caucus, warding off a late challenge from rivals Ron DeSantis and Nikki Haley and cementing his status as the clear Republican frontrunner in the race.
Jim Vondruska / Bloomberg via Getty Images

ABC News has canceled a debate that was scheduled to take place late this week after former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley signaled that she would not go head-to-head against Florida Governor Ron DeSantis again, saying her next debate “will either be with Donald Trump or with Joe Biden.”

“We’ve had five great debates in this campaign. Unfortunately, Donald Trump has ducked all of them,” Haley said in a statement. “He has nowhere left to hide. The next debate I do will either be with Donald Trump or with Joe Biden. I look forward to it.”

The former South Carolina governor made the comments a day after the Iowa caucuses, which was easily won by Trump, who garnered 51% of the vote, DeSantis finishing second, with 21%, and Haley third, with 19%. Haley had focused heavily on the state. Her political operations spent more money in the state than any other candidate, with around $37 million spent on pro-Haley ads in the state through January 12, compared to $35 million on pro-DeSantis ads and around $18 million on pro-Trump ads. Haley is expected to perform much better in New Hampshire, where she has consistently polled a strong second behind Trump.

Haley faced off in a head-to-head debate against DeSantis ahead of the Iowa caucuses. A Daily Mail poll conducted by J.L. Partners found that 55% of viewers said that DeSantis won, while 31% said that Haley won.

The Florida governor criticized Haley over her decision to skip the debate, which had been scheduled for Thursday.

“Nikki Haley is afraid to debate because she doesn’t want to answer the tough questions such as how she got rich off Boeing after giving them millions in taxpayer handouts as governor of South Carolina,” DeSantis wrote on X. “The reality is that she is not running for the nomination, she’s running to be Trump’s VP. I won’t snub New Hampshire voters like both Nikki Haley and Donald Trump, and plan to honor my commitments. I look forward to debating two empty podiums in the Granite State this week.”

Haley has dismissed speculation that she is angling to be VP in a Trump administration, saying that she does not run for second place. “I’m not interested in being vice president,” she recently told CBS News reporter Tony Dokoupil. “I’m running to be president and I’m running to win and we will.”


Trump also took a swipe at Haley on Tuesday on social media, writing: “Americans for Chinese Prosperity, a RINO Charles Koch con job that is funding, along with many Democrats and others that aren’t feeling so well right now, is very embarrassed by the poor showing of Nikki ‘Birdbrain’ Haley in yesterday’s Iowa Primary. She placed a distant THIRD, after spending millions of Koch’s largely Inherited and OPM Dollars. I HATE WHAT THEY REPRESENT, OPEN BORDERS AND ALL — SO BAD FOR OUR COUNTRY!!!”

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  ABC News Cancels New Hampshire Debate After Haley Refuses Another Head-To-Head With DeSantis