ABC’s New Hampshire debate canceled after Haley skips out

ABC’s New Hampshire debate canceled after Haley skips out

ABC News has canceled a planned debate in New Hampshire, after GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley said Tuesday that she would only step foot on the debate stage again if Donald Trump or Joe Biden is there.

“We’ve had five great debates in this campaign. Unfortunately, Donald Trump has ducked all of them,” Haley said in a statement. “He has nowhere left to hide. The next debate I do will either be with Donald Trump or with Joe Biden. I look forward to it.”

The upcoming debates were slated to take place before the New Hampshire primary on Jan. 23. ABC News planned to partner with WMUR-TV to host a debate on Thursday, and CNN announced it would host a debate on Sunday.

But with both Trump and Haley declining to participate, an ABC News spokesperson said in a statement Tuesday evening that its debate is off. “Our intent was to host a debate coming out of the Iowa caucuses, but we always knew that would be contingent on the candidates and the outcome of the race,” the network spokesperson said.

CNN did not respond to a request for comment and has not made any public comment about its scheduling.

Haley’s challenge toward Trump comes after the former U.N. ambassador finished in third place in the Iowa caucuses on Monday night. Trump was the far favorite, with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in second place.

While DeSantis has accepted the invite to the CNN debate, Trump has already scheduled a New Hampshire rally for Sunday.

DeSantis said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, that Haley “is afraid to debate because she doesn’t want to answer the tough questions” and accused her of running to be Trump’s vice president.

“I won’t snub New Hampshire voters like both Nikki Haley and Donald Trump, and plan to honor my commitments,” DeSantis said in the post. “I look forward to debating two empty podiums in the Granite State this week.”

Haley on Monday night claimed that her close third-place result had made the campaign a head-to-head race between her and Trump.

“I can safely say tonight Iowa made this Republican primary a two-person race,” Haley said.

Lisa Kashinsky contributed to this report.

Powered by WPeMatico

Comments are closed.