Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley on Sunday picked up an endorsement from New Hampshire’s Union Leader newspaper, less than two days out from the Granite State’s primary.
“If you can select a Republican ballot on Tuesday, we urge you to select Nikki Haley as your next president. New Hampshire is ready for a change,” the op-ed from Union Leader said. “America is ready for a change. The world is ready for a change. We want a better option than we have had for the past eight years, and Nikki Haley is that option.”
The op-ed, published Sunday, described the two most recent presidents without naming them directly as “dinosaurs” who “had their shot and nature selected them for extinction.”
“The dinosaurs from the last two administrations have indeed had their shot and Nikki Haley is the fireball from the heavens to wipe them out,” the op-ed wrote.
“Putting forward a rematch of the last election means putting an octogenarian in the White House and putting a less-than-capable vice president in the on-deck circle,” the op-ed continued. “Haley has not been shy with the fact that she has at least a quarter-century age advantage on those candidates and she has a good point. Nikki Haley is in her prime and selflessly willing to give that prime to the country her parents chose to raise their family in.”
The op-ed argued voting for Haley is a vote for a candidate, rather than just against President Biden and former President Trump, both of whom maintain comfortable leads in their respective party races.
The op-ed did not name GOP rivals Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis or Trump, who holds a 11.1 point lead over Haley in New Hampshire, according to a polling index maintained by The Hill and Decision Desk HQ. While notable, Trump’s lead in recent weeks was narrowed as Haley climbed in the polls in the Granite State. DeSantis has support in the single digits, the polling index showed. DeSantis announced Sunday that he was dropping out of the race.
Trump easily won the Iowa caucuses last week, beating DeSantis by nearly 30 points while Haley came in third, close behind the Florida governor.
“New Hampshire can prove that the independent-minded voters of the Granite State will not be told the election is a done deal,” the op-ed wrote. “New Hampshire can prove that nothing is inevitable and send Nikki Haley home to South Carolina with a head of steam and nothing weighing her down as she sets her sights on defeating the ‘inevitable,’ but very vulnerable, Democratic nominee,” the piece continued, making a likely reference to Biden.
The Union Leader, based in Manchester, N.H., also did not endorse Trump in the previous two election cycles. In the 2016 Republican primary, it endorsed former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, but later retracted the endorsement after Christie dropped out. In the 2016 general election, the paper endorsed libertarian candidate Gary Johnson, choosing a non-Republican nominee for the first time in 100 years.
The Union Leader endorsed Biden’s White House run in 2020, calling Trump at the time “100 percent wrong for America.”