Symbolic Rejection of Nikki Haley: “None of These Candidates” Option Wins Nevada GOP Primary

Symbolic Rejection of Nikki Haley: "None of These Candidates" Option Wins Nevada GOP Primary

Symbolic Rejection of Nikki Haley: “None of These Candidates” Option Wins Nevada GOP Primary

“None of These Candidates” Wins Nevada GOP Primary, Embarrassment for Nikki Haley

In Nevada’s symbolic Republican presidential primary, the option “none of these candidates” emerged as the victor, dealing an embarrassing blow to Nikki Haley, the sole major candidate on the ballot.

Former U.N. ambassador Haley chose to participate in the state-run primary election instead of the party’s presidential caucuses, which are the only contest in the state awarding delegates toward the nomination. Former President Donald Trump is the sole major candidate competing in the caucuses on Thursday and is expected to secure the state’s Republican delegates.

Symbolic Rejection of Nikki Haley: "None of These Candidates" Option Wins Nevada GOP Primary

Taking advantage of a quirk in Nevada election law, more voters opted for “none of these candidates” on Tuesday’s primary ballots than cast their votes for Haley.

Haley had previously stated her intention to “focus on the states that are fair” and did not actively campaign in the western state.

Nevada Governor Joe Lombardo, a Republican, announced his plan to vote for “none of these candidates” on Tuesday. Several Republicans heading to the polls echoed this sentiment, seeing it as a way to express dissatisfaction with the available choices.

Haley’s campaign objected to the $55,000 fee charged by the Nevada GOP for candidates to participate in the caucuses.

The option “none of these candidates” was added to all statewide races in Nevada after Watergate as a means for voters to participate while expressing discontent with the candidates. While “none” cannot win an elected office, it has come first in primary congressional contests in the past and even outpaced prominent candidates like George Bush and Edward Kennedy in Nevada’s 1980 presidential primaries.

The caucuses on Thursday are the only Nevada contest that counts toward the GOP’s presidential nomination. However, they were perceived as heavily biased in favor of Trump due to stringent grassroots support requirements and new state party rules.

Trump is expected to secure a comfortable victory in the caucuses, likely claiming all 26 of the state’s delegates. Delegates play a crucial role in selecting the party’s nominee at the national party conventions.

Nevada, traditionally the third state in the primary field, transitioned from party-run caucuses to a state-run primary election after Democrats controlling the Legislature changed the law to encourage higher participation.

While caucuses typically demand in-person attendance at specific times, elections offer more flexibility for participation, with polls open for most of the day on Election Day, along with absentee or early voting.

Despite the shift, Nevada Republicans opted to stick with party-run caucuses, citing preferences for certain rules such as the requirement for participants to show government-issued ID.

Competing in the caucuses requires intensive organization of supporters statewide, a challenge for candidates that Trump, as the former president and frontrunner, is well-positioned to tackle.

Source: AP News

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