According to a CNN exit poll, the majority of voters who backed Nikki Haley in the New Hampshire GOP primary were not registered Republicans. In contrast, a significant majority of Trump supporters were registered Republicans, with only a small percentage being undeclared. A small fraction of Trump supporters were previously unregistered voters before participating in the primary.
In New Hampshire, voters are not required to register as Republicans in order to participate in the GOP primary. However, they are not allowed to register as Democrats. According to a recent poll, 80% of Trump supporters believe in the false claims made by the former president that President Biden did not win the 2020 election legitimately. On the other hand, 83% of Haley supporters believe that Biden won the election fairly, defeating Trump. It should be noted that Trump incorrectly stated that Democrats could take part in the Republican primary, but in reality, they would have needed to switch their party affiliation or remain undeclared before October 6th.
Haley may face significant challenges in the GOP race due to this disparity. It would be crucial for her to gain more support from registered Republicans in order to compete, especially since not all states allow independents to participate in their primaries. Fortunately, South Carolina, where Haley has been focusing her attention, does not require voters to be registered party members to vote. This could potentially benefit her in her home state, where Trump won by approximately 11 percentage points in the most recent vote count.
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