Donald Trump’s GOP Rivals Are Going After Each Other – Former President Donald Trump won the 2016 Republican presidential nomination largely by dividing the GOP field until he was the last candidate standing. As he now has a commanding lead over the rest of the field, the former president hasn’t gone on the attack in quite the same way.
Instead, it appears that his potential rivals are going after one another.
According to the latest USA Today/Suffolk University Poll, former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley has surged ahead and now has the support of 11 percent of registered voters who said they plan to vote in the GOP primaries or caucuses, up from just four percent in June. Even more notable is that Haley is not just a single percentage point below Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who has 12 percent support, down from 23 percent just four months ago.
Trump still dominates the field and is backed by 58 percent of Republican voters in the poll, up by 10 points.
DeSantis Targeting Haley
The new poll was released just days before the DeSantis campaign released a new TV ad that ran on Sunday, targeting Haley for bringing Chinese businesses to South Carolina when she was the state’s governor. The TV spot, which CBS News reported had a $2.5 million ad buy paid for by the super PAC “Never Back Down,” debuted during Sunday’s “60 Minutes” and will air this week on Fox News, CNN, and Newsmax in Iowa and New Hampshire media markets.
It highlights the growing foreign policy feud between the two GOP hopefuls, as it centers on a South Carolina-based production plant for a Chinese fiberglass company built in 2016. China Jushi reportedly invested $300 million to build its first U.S. plant on 200 acres in Columbia, South Carolina, and brought in at least 400 jobs – and the ad referred to the firm as a “communist party-owned high tech company,” while noting the proximity of the plant to a U.S. Army training center.
According to CBS News, China Jushi is partially owned by a Chinese government enterprise whose leadership has ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Another ad from Never Back Down PAC claimed Haley defended providing assistance to the people in the West Bank and Gaza.
On Saturday Haley hit at DeSantis over his foreign policy experience, telling potential voters at a town hall at Central College in Pella, Iowa, “You know first thing I’ll say is, God bless Ron DeSantis because he continues to try and bring up this refugee situation. He has said that I want to take Gazan refugees. I have never said that. And he’s got an ad on TV, and I will tell you, from CNN to Newsmax, they have all said that his ad is a lie.
Some TV viewers should get ready for some serious ad blitzes in the coming weeks, as the pro-Haley super PAC “Stand for America” is also placing a $6.5 million ad buy in Iowa and New Hampshire.
It is already clear that both DeSantis and Haley see that they each need a strong showing early in the primaries if they’re going to build the momentum to challenge Donald Trump.
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.
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