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Haley heads to Michigan despite Trump’s win in South Carolina


CHARLESTON, S.C. — Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley says this isn’t “the end of our story” despite Donald Trump’s easy primary victory in her home state of South Carolina, where the onetime governor has long said his competitiveness with the former president would be revealed.

Haley, who has defied calls from South Carolina Republicans to drop out of the race, planned to travel Sunday to Michigan, where the primary will be held on Tuesday.

Trump, who won the primary race in the South on Saturday, has now surpassed every primary or caucus on the GOP’s early season calendar that rewards delegates. Their performance left former U.N. ambassador Haley with little room for maneuver.

“I have never seen the Republican Party as united as it is right now,” Trump said at his victory night celebration in Columbia.

Haley insists she is holding on despite mounting pressure to abandon her candidacy and allow Trump to focus entirely on Democratic President Joe Biden in a 2020 rematch.

In addition to Sunday evening’s rally in vote-rich Oakland County, Michigan’s northwest of Detroit, the West Michigan Republican also planned an event in Grand Rapids for Monday.

“I’m grateful that today is not the end of our story,” Haley told supporters on Saturday. “We will continue to fight for America and we will not rest until America wins.”

Asa Hutchinson, a Trump critic and former Arkansas governor who dropped out of the GOP presidential race after the Iowa primary in January, said he thinks Haley should remain in office. “The thing is, he did everything he could in South Carolina,” he said. on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

Haley has vowed to at least go ahead with the primaries on March 5, known as Super Tuesday. “But he needs to step up because you are hitting the delegate wall. And the delegate wall is on March 5,” Hutchinson said. “So he needs to prove himself.”

South Carolina’s most prominent Republicans sided with Trump, including U.S. Rep. Nancy Mace, who endorsed Trump last week.

According to U.S. Representative Russell Fry, “this has always been a primary in name only” and Trump was never in danger of losing to Haley. Fry said Trump will be the GOP nominee and the latest election results are “just another confirmation of that.”

Texas Governor Greg Abbott, one of Trump’s allies, said Trump is on a path to clinch the nomination by mid-March. “I would say the wind is strong,” Abbott told CNN.

Not all voters in South Carolina want Haley to end her campaign.

Irene Sulkowski of Daniel Island said she hopes Haley moves on, suggesting the former governor would be a more attractive general election candidate than Trump despite his popularity with the GOP base that powered the primary season.

“‘Who do you want to represent us in the general election?'” said accountant Sulkowski. “They don’t think,” he said. “And they need to take a longer-term perspective.”

Beaumont reported from Des Moines, Iowa. Associated Press writer James Pollard in Columbia, South Carolina, contributed to this report.


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