CNN has dropped plans to hold a New Hampshire Republican debate on Sunday, after former UN ambassador Nikki Haley said that she would only participate in the event if former President Donald Trump did. That left Florida Governor Ron DeSantis as the only candidate who had committed to participate.
CNN will hold a town hall in New Hampshire with Haley on Thursday. Jake Tapper will moderate the event, to start at 9 p.m. ET at New England College in Henniker, NH. The network held a town hall with DeSantis on Tuesday.
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Trump has refused to participate in any of the debates this cycle, and his campaign had given no indication that would change following his lopsided victory in the Iowa caucuses on Tuesday.
ABC News and WMUR-TV dropped their plans for a Thursday debate in New Hampshire, given that only DeSantis had committed.
Haley, meanwhile, is trying to focus on Trump in the final days before the Jan. 23 New Hampshire primary. In her speech on caucus night, she characterized the race as a “two-person race,” even though she placed third behind DeSantis. Her supporters are looking for a victory in New Hampshire, or at least a close second, for her to have any hope of stopping Trump’s momentum toward the GOP nomination.
A CNN spokesperson said that they will “continue to pursue other opportunities as the campaign season progresses through 2024, including candidate town halls.”
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