Trump, Biden Poised for NH Victories — By: Church Militant

DETROIT ( – At one point in the New Hampshire primary, it appeared that Nikki Haley was well positioned against Donald Trump, but a plethora of late polls find the former president expanding his advantage well into double digits.

All six voters of Dixville Notch side with Haley

Also on the ballot tonight is the Democratic presidential primary, though without President Joe Biden. He is bypassing this event because the state refused to accept the schedule change recommended by the Democratic National Committee. The change would have deprived New Hampshire of its cherished first-in-the-nation primary status.

Since Saturday, 10 polls have been released by many different pollsters. Except for the American Research Group, all show Trump holding leads between 10 and a whopping 27 percentage points. The ARG survey sees a tighter 33-29% edge, but it’s still in Trump’s favor.

All the pollsters included nonaffiliated voters in their samplings. Under New Hampshire’s voting procedure, nonaffiliated voters can choose which primary to cast their ballots in.

Compared to ARG, Insider Advantage shows a 62-35% split for Trump, which is an obvious wide disparity between these two pollsters who are at the opposite end of the ballot test range. Tonight will determine which one of these most extreme results proves to be the outlier.

The Democratic race is much more difficult to forecast because of the write-in campaign underway for the president. Projecting just how many people will come to the polls and then write the president’s name on a ballot may be considerably smaller than polling might suggest.

Once again, it is the ARG firm that is out of step with other pollsters. Its final survey finds write-in candidate Biden holding a 51-17% margin over Minnesota Democratic U.S. Rep. Dean Phillips. That’s down from the 28% Phillips recorded in a previous ARG survey released last week.

For Haley, it’s hard to see a path going forward should she lose by the amounts suggested in most polls.

Two Democratic polls have been released in addition to the ARG data. Both the Emerson College poll and the University of New Hampshire poll show Biden with over 60% support. Three polls, ARG, CNN and Emerson, see support for Phillips falling between 10 and 18 percentage points.

The New Hampshire primary could effectively spell the end to the competitive challenges.

First, for Haley, it’s hard to see a path going forward should she lose by the amounts suggested in most polls. Her next stop is Nevada. The legislature and former governor forced a primary law upon the state, but Republicans still wanted to have their caucus as in years past. Thus, the Nevada GOP is holding both a primary and a caucus, but the latter forum is the delegate apportionment body.

The candidates can only participate in one of the contests, and curiously, Haley entered the primary. The other candidates, when they were in the race, chose the caucus. Therefore, regardless of how many primary votes Haley attracts, Trump is going to sweep the Nevada delegation because he is the only active candidate who will be receiving pledged delegates.

The South Carolina primary, Haley’s home state, will hold its primary on Feb. 24, and it will be interesting to see whether her candidacy will still be alive at that time. Polling already shows Trump holding strong leads in the Palmetto State.

For the Democrats, Phillips may well be a “one-and-done” candidate. He will have little in the way of an argument moving forward against Biden if he fails to overtake him in New Hampshire, where the incumbent’s name was not even on the ballot.

With data showing the respective party leaders significantly expanding their leads, an upset will occur tonight if either Biden or Trump fails to meet their enhanced expectations. The betting odds, however, clearly lean toward the favored candidates.

Delaware & North Dakota Gubernatorial Race Updates

Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long, D-Del.

With Gov. John Carney, D-Del., being ineligible to run for a third term, gubernatorial candidate Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long, D-Del., released the results of her internal Public Policy Polling Democratic primary survey. The study finds Hall-Long posting an early 30-23% lead over New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer. National Wildlife Federation CEO Collin O’Mara was not included on the Democratic primary ballot test.

The Delaware primary is one of the latest in the cycle scheduled for Sept. 10, which means a lot of time remains for this race to develop. The eventual Democratic nominee will be in a commanding position to win the open race in November.

North Dakota’s Republican Gov. Doug Burgum is set to retire. The Republican presidential candidate announced yesterday that he will not seek a third term as North Dakota’s governor, despite high approval ratings. Burgum endorses Trump, and the former president has indicated that Burgum would be primed for a position in a new Trump administration should the 2024 election go the Republicans’ way, so Burgum’s time in politics may not be coming to an end.

The decision to leave the governorship when his current term ends will open a highly competitive race for the Republican nomination through the state party convention and, potentially, a June 11 open primary. The eventual Republican nominee becomes a prohibitive favorite to succeed Burgum.

Alaska’s Ranked Choice Voting Opponents File Petition

The proponents of a ballot proposition to repeal the state’s top four and ranked choice voting systems have presented 55% more than the required number of signatures to reach the ballot, but they may be short on another qualifying requirement. While the group will likely have the proper aggregate number of valid signatures, there are questions about whether it has met the requirement that certain numbers of signatures must come from all the required districts. Therefore, it remains to be seen if this repeal measure will qualify for the 2024 election ballot.

The ranked choice system could have a wide-ranging effect on the coming presidential race, just as it has in the last two Alaska congressional campaigns.

Jim Ellis, creator of The Ellis Insight website and senior political analyst for the Business-Industry Political Action Committee, analyzes and reports on U.S. electoral politics. He has a background in political consulting, managing political campaigns and action committees. Ellis is a regular speaker and media contributor on electoral topics, appearing on various radio shows and TV programs. He hosts Church Militant’s The Ellis Insight — a video podcast identifying emerging campaign and election trends.

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