Super PAC’s $500K boost for Haley in NH: A bid to tip the scales in GOP showdown

In New Hampshire, a state known for its open primary system, this financial push is seen as a strategic move to bolster Haley’s visibility and appeal among independent voters.

Image Credit: Brian Snyder/Reuters

Nikki Haley’s campaign for the Republican presidential nomination has seen significant developments, including a major investment by a Super PAC and evolving statements on her stance regarding abortion rights.

The Super PAC ‘Independents Moving the Needle’ has made a substantial investment in Nikki Haley’s campaign, spending $500,000 on video ads to support her candidacy in the New Hampshire primary. This PAC, established by political independents in November, is focusing its efforts on influencing undeclared voters who can participate in either party’s primary.

In New Hampshire, a state known for its open primary system, this financial push is seen as a strategic move to bolster Haley’s visibility and appeal among independent voters. As of January 17, the PAC’s total expenditure in support of Haley’s campaign amounts to approximately $1.2 million.

Following a third-place finish in the Iowa caucus, Haley’s campaign is gaining momentum in New Hampshire. According to a Saint Anselm College poll conducted on Jan. 16, Haley is trailing former President Donald Trump by 14 points among likely voters.

The New Hampshire primary presents a unique landscape for Republican candidates due to its open primary format, allowing undeclared voters to influence the outcome significantly. Haley’s campaign is focusing resources here to capitalize on this opportunity.

Haley’s campaign has received substantial support from affluent donors and Super PACs. Among them is Americans for Prosperity Action, a group with ties to billionaire Charles Koch, which has spent close to $29.4 million in support of Haley.

As of January 17, pro-Haley groups have collectively spent over $74.6 million in support of her campaign, with additional expenditures aimed at attacking her Republican rivals. This level of external funding is unprecedented among GOP candidates, including Trump, in the current election cycle.

‘Independents Moving the Needle’ is led by figures such as Jonathan Bush, a healthcare data company CEO, and the Laukiens, who lead life sciences companies. FEC filings indicate that Bush has contributed $6,300 to Haley’s campaign, while Frank Laukien has donated approximately $3,000 across various Republican candidates.

These leaders represent a new wave of political donors, bringing their influence and resources to bear in the presidential primaries. Their involvement signifies a shift in the landscape of political fundraising and candidate support.

During a recent appearance on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” Nikki Haley expressed her support for a federal law banning abortion. “Yes, I’m unapologetically pro-life. … I am fine with a federal law [banning abortion],” Haley stated, marking a shift from her previous position that abortion decisions should be personal.

This statement contrasts with Haley’s earlier remarks during a town hall in New Hampshire, where she advocated for individual choice on the issue.

National polls indicate a disconnect between Haley’s stance on abortion and public opinion. An Associated Press/NORC Center for Public Affairs poll found that 73 percent of voters disagreed with a six-week abortion ban. Similarly, a Gallup poll revealed that a majority of Americans support legal abortion in all or some circumstances.

These polling results suggest that Haley’s position on a federal abortion ban may not align with the majority of American voters, potentially impacting her appeal in the general electorate.

President Joe Biden’s campaign has actively embraced abortion rights as a central issue. In a recent ad, a Texas OBGYN shared her personal story about needing an abortion, highlighting the impact of Trump’s Supreme Court appointments and the overturning of Roe v. Wade.

Biden’s approach contrasts with Haley’s stance, as he acknowledges the majority of Americans who support a woman’s right to choose. His campaign is leveraging this issue to galvanize support ahead of the November election.

The involvement of Super PACs like ‘Independents Moving the Needle’ in the primaries has brought significant financial resources into Haley’s campaign. These groups operate under regulations that allow them to raise and spend unlimited funds, influencing the direction and narrative of political campaigns.

The legal framework governing Super PAC activities ensures transparency in campaign financing, though their influence continues to be a topic of debate in American politics.

The Republican Party is experiencing internal dynamics that are reflected in Haley’s campaign strategies and the involvement of Super PACs. These developments indicate varying approaches within the party as it prepares for the upcoming presidential election.

Haley’s campaign, backed by significant financial resources and marked by her conservative stance on key issues like abortion, is shaping the contours of the GOP’s strategy and potential electoral success in 2024.


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