Almost half of Republican and Republican-leaning respondents say they approve of the Indian American leader running
Ahead of her expected announcement of a presidential run, Indian American Republican leader Nikki Haley pulled key support from Florida Governor Ron DeSantis in a hypothetical Republican 2024 presidential primary, according to a new poll.
The Yahoo News-YouGov poll found that DeSantis leads former President Donald Trump in a hypothetical head-to-head match-up, 45% to 41%. But in a three-way race with former South Carolina Governor Haley in the mix, Trump leads with 38% support to DeSantis’s 35% and Haley’s 11%.
Read: Nikki Haley faces a serious uphill climb: The Hill (February 3, 2023)
Almost half of Republican and Republican-leaning respondents said they approve of Haley running, while a fifth disapprove. But 30% said they are not sure. The poll found Trump holds a strong lead over her in a head-to-head match-up, 54% to 27%.
Born Nimrata Nikki Randhawa, Haley, 51, was the first Indian American to get cabinet rank as US ambassador to the United Nations under Trump.
Stepping down in 2018, she moved back to South Carolina and launched a political nonprofit that served to promote her policies and, later, a political action committee that allowed her to support endorsed candidates.
The PAC, Stand for America, also helped fund Haley’s travel to early-voting states like Iowa and New Hampshire, where she stumped for local candidates, according to media reports.
Haley’s bid would make her the first official rival to Trump, who is the only Republican presidential candidate so far. She said in 2021 that she would not run for president in 2024 if Trump ran, but has suggested recently she changed her mind.
Read: Nikki Haley poised to enter 2024 presidential race (February 1, 2023)
Haley hinted at her change of plans in an interview with Fox News earlier this month, saying, “Yes, we need to go in a new direction. And can I be that leader? Yes, I think I can be that leader.”
“It’s bigger than one person. And when you’re looking at the future of America, I think it’s time for new generational change. I don’t think you need to be 80 years old to go be a leader in DC.”
Pollsters also found DeSantis leading President Joe Biden in a hypothetical general election match-up, 44% to 43%, but Biden leads Trump by 6 points, 47% to 41%.
DeSantis has been rumored as a possible contender for the Republican nomination and has consistently placed at least second in hypothetical Republican primary polls. In some cases, he has been in first ahead of Trump, the Hill noted.
Many other prominent Republicans, including former Vice President Mike Pence, former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson (and former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, have indicated that they are considering their own runs, which could lead the Republican primary to become a crowded race.
Read: Haley pulls support from DeSantis in 2024 GOP primary poll (February 8, 2023)
Trump leads DeSantis by 1 point, 37% to 36%, in a hypothetical nine-candidate match-up, taking into account other possible candidates.
The poll was conducted among 1,585 US adults from Feb 2 to Feb 6. The margin of error was 2.8 percentage points.
Read: Nikki Haley hints at presidential run in 2024 (January 21, 2023)
Read: Nikki Haley hints at 2024 presidential run (November 22, 2022)
Read: In campaign style speech Nikki Haley touts her role at UN (December 3, 2021)
Read: Nikki Haley calls for formal US alliance with India (October 27, 2021)