New Hampshire Governor Sununu Endorses Nikki Haley For President
TUSCALOOSA, ALABAMA - DECEMBER 06: Republican presidential candidate former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley takes the stage for the NewsNation Republican Presidential Primary Debate at the University of Alabama Moody Music Hall on December 6, 2023 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. The four presidential hopefuls squared off during the fourth Republican primary debate without current frontrunner and former U.S. President Donald Trump, who has declined to participate in any of the previous debates. (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)
Brandon Bell/Getty Images

New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu endorsed former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley for the Republican nomination for president on Tuesday.

Sununu’s endorsement is a significant victory for Haley, who is relying on a strong performance in early states to propel herself over former President Donald Trump, who has so far dominated the early primary polling. It’s also a significant blow to other GOP candidates vying to compete with Trump for the nomination.

Sununu has appeared with many of the Republican candidates at events in recent weeks. The governor said he was evaluating the field to find the best Republican to have a chance at knocking off Trump for the top spot in the primary. He has said for months that the Republican Party should move on from the former president.

Sununu appeared with Haley and endorsed her at a town hall event in Manchester, New Hampshire.

“This is an opportunity for New Hampshire to lead this country, for New Hampshire to say we’re not looking in the rearview mirror anymore,” Sununu said.

“You bet your ass I am. We’re all in for Nikki Haley,” he said, throwing his weight in the state toward the former U.N. ambassador.

Haley has gained a surge in support in recent weeks, including from prominent Democratic donors, coming close to overtaking Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Both have trailed Trump significantly since the race began, though DeSantis has held on to the number two spot.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s campaign downplayed the impact of Sununu’s pick in a statement to The Wall Street Journal.

“This puts us down one vote in New Hampshire,” Christie spokesman Karl Rickett said in a statement. The New Jersey governor will overcome the loss of Sununu by continuing to tell the “unvarnished truth about Donald Trump,” Rickett said.


DeSantis’ campaign similarly shrugged off Sununu’s choice.

“What happens in New Hampshire will be significantly impacted by the outcome in Iowa, where the true Trump alternative will emerge,” DeSantis spokesman Andrew Romeo told WSJ in a statement. The DeSantis campaign has heavily invested in Iowa and won endorsements from its governor, Kim Reynolds, and evangelical leader Bob Vander Plaats.

Donald Trump is leading, according to the RealClearPolitics national polling average. DeSantis is second and Haley is third. Entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy sits at fourth, and Christie trails in fifth.

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