• Tuesday, May 21, 2024

HEADLINE STORY

Nikki Haley suspends GOP presidential campaign, says ‘no regrets’

She scripted history by becoming the first woman ever to win a Republican presidential primary and the first Indian-American to have won either the Democratic or the Republican primaries.

Nikki Haley (Photo by Brandon Bell/Getty Images)

By: Shubham Ghosh

INDIAN-AMERICAN presidential candidate Nikki Haley, who continued to challenge former president Donald Trump in the race to clinch the nomination of the Republican Party for this year’s election despite making little gains against him, on Wednesday (6) bowed out of the race.

The 52-year-old leader’s move came a day after a disappointing performance on Super Tuesday (5) when she was defeated in 15 states across the US by the former president. She, however, succeeded in denying Trump a complete sweep by winning the state of Vermont.

The withdrawal of Haley means Trump remains the only GOP presidential candidate and the November 5 election looks very likely to be a rematch of the 2020 battle as incumbent president Joe Biden was also looking very strong to clinch the nomination for the Democrats.

Read: Nikki Haley wins first primary against Donald Trump

Haley said she had no regrets over her decision and would not endorse Trump, her former boss.

“The time has now come to suspend my campaign,” she said on Wednesday in South Carolina, the state of her birth which she also lost in this primary season.

Read: India wants to be partner with US but sees Washington as weak: Nikki Haley

“I said I wanted Americans to have their voices heard. I have done that. I have no regrets,” she added. “Although I will no longer be a candidate, I will not stop using my voice for the things I believe in.”

More than a third of all the Republican delegates were at stake on Super Tuesday, the biggest haul of any date on the 2024 primary calendar.

Haley, a former South Carolina governor and UN ambassador, has not made a final decision as to whether or not she would endorse her ex-boss Trump.

People who are close to Haley have different opinions. Some believe that it would be good for her to back Trump because she would be viewed as a team player. Others ardently oppose her endorsing him.

During her campaign, Haley scripted history by becoming the first woman ever to win a Republican presidential primary — in Washington DC. She is also the first Indian-American to have won either the Democratic or the Republican primaries.

The three other previous Indian American presidential aspirants – Bobby Jindal in 2016, Kamala Harris in 2020 and Vivek Ramaswamy in 2024 – had failed to win even one primary.

Haley, whose parents moved to the United States in the 1960s, was born Nimarata Nikki Randhawa.

She has long used her middle name Nikki and adopted the surname Haley after her marriage in 1996.

During the campaign, Trump repeatedly referred to Haley as “Nimbra” in a rant on his Truth Social account, adding her to the list of foes he has targeted with racist attacks.

Haley’s father, Ajit Singh Randhawa, is a professor of biology who got his PhD at the University of British Columbia and later moved to Bamberg, a segregated town where Haley was born, to teach at nearby Voorhees College — a historically Black university.

Haley recently told Fox News that although she faced racism as a “Brown girl that grew up in a small rural town in South Carolina,” she became “the first female minority governor in history, who became a UN ambassador and who is now running for president.”

(With PTI inputs)

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