Surprise! Nikki Haley Beats Donald Trump In Vermont Republican Presidential Primary

The former South Carolina governor still isn’t close to surpassing his delegate count. But it's her second primary win, and victory sure tastes delicious.

Nikki Haley pulled off a surprise win against Donald Trump in the Republican presidential primary in Vermont.

She was right on the edge of winning more than 50% of the vote late Tuesday, as a small percentage of remaining votes were still being tallied. If she does, she’ll net herself 17 delegates. If she stays below 50%, the delegates will be spread out between her and others on the ballot.

It’s the second time the former South Carolina governor has topped Trump in a Republican primary. She picked up 19 delegates on Sunday after winning the primary in Washington, D.C.

“We’re honoured to have received the support of millions of Americans across the country today, including in Vermont where Nikki became the first Republican woman to win two presidential primary contests,” Haley national spokesperson Olivia Perez-Cubas said in a statement.

“Today, in state after state, there remains a large block of Republican primary voters who are expressing deep concerns about Donald Trump. That is not the unity our party needs for success,” Perez-Cubas said. “Addressing those voters’ concerns will make the Republican Party and America better.”

These are relatively small victories for Haley, and she is still nowhere near Trump’s delegate count. As of 11 p.m. on Tuesday night, Trump was up to 493 delegates and Haley was at 52. Whoever locks in 1,215 first will go on to win the Republican presidential nomination.

Still, a win is a win. And for some of Haley’s supporters, it’s worth it for her to stay in the race as long as possible ― even if she can’t win ― just to keep fighting and frustrating Trump.

“There is a collective scream in this country,” Antonia Ferrier, a former longtime aide to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and now a major donor to Haley based in D.C., told HuffPost on Sunday.

“It’s like a collective scream for a leader we can be proud of,” she said. “But the established political class refuses to listen to it because of their own feedback loops or whatever fucking reason, and Haley is giving voice to that.”


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