New Hampshire primary 2024: Trump projected to win, Haley vows to fight on

Trump and Biden had strong showings in the first-in-the-nation primary.

Last Updated: January 23, 2024, 10:39 PM EST

Former President Donald Trump will win the 2024 New Hampshire GOP primary, ABC News projects. As of 10 p.m. Eastern, Trump was ahead by less than 10 percentage points. While that represents a slight overperformance of polling for former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley, even a close loss is a big hit to her prospects, as she had staked her campaign on a strong performance in the Granite State. Haley spoke shortly after the projection to emphasize that "this race is far from over," while Trump (and his allies) amped up calls for her to drop out.

ABC News has also projected that President Joe Biden will win the Granite State's Democratic primary. A comfortable write-in victory for him despite not even being on the ballot is a good sign for the incumbent.

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Here's how the news is developing. All times Eastern.

That’s a wrap!

We’re calling it a night on the ol’ live blog — and it’s barely past 10 p.m.! That’s kind of a microcosm of how little suspense is left in this primary race. With his victory tonight in New Hampshire, Trump proved he can win Republican primaries even in states where the electorate is not favorable to him. That said, Haley can take some solace in the fact that the race was closer than polls suggested: With 44 percent of the expected vote reporting, Trump leads “only” 54 percent to 44 percent. Haley will need to keep beating her polls like that, and then some, to have any prayer of winning South Carolina on Feb. 24 and keeping her campaign alive: Currently, Trump leads in polls there by an average of 37 points!

There’s no more suspense on the Democratic side either. With 21 percent of the expected vote reporting, Biden leads Phillips 67 percent to 20 percent — despite not even appearing on the ballot. Biden was never in any danger of losing the Democratic nomination, but if he’s putting up performances like that even as a write-in, there’s really not much of a story to be told about Democratic dissatisfaction with their president either.

Thanks for joining us for tonight’s live blog, and enjoy the extra hours of sleep New Hampshire is giving you! I know I will. Zzzzz ...

—Nathaniel Rakich, 538

Final thoughts: Somewhat conservatives are giving Trump critical support

As much as Trump has rewritten Republican politics, there's a long-standing pattern to winning GOP primary races: the candidate who wins the "somewhat conservative" bloc of voters usually garners the nomination — including Trump in 2016. Here in 2024, the difference between victory and defeat for Trump in New Hampshire was his hold on this group of voters. He carried them 60 percent to Haley's 38 percent, and they made up a plurality of the electorate (41 percent), based on the exit poll. This comes on the heels of his 47 percent take among somewhat conservatives in the Iowa caucuses, ahead of Haley's 25 percent, per the Iowa entrance poll. Although Trump's strongest group is now the very conservative wing of the GOP, which was Ted Cruz's base back in the 2016 Republican primary, Trump's ability to still handily carry the somewhat conservative set has enabled him to comfortably take hold of this nomination contest.

PHOTO: Republican presidential candidate and former President Donald Trump shakes hands with former Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy during his New Hampshire presidential primary watch party, in Nashua, New Hampshire, Jan. 23, 2024.
Republican presidential candidate and former President Donald Trump shakes hands with former Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy during his New Hampshire presidential primary election night watch party, in Nashua, New Hampshire, Jan. 23, 2024.
Mike Segar/Reuters

Geoffrey Skelley, 538

Final thoughts: It’s all over but the paperwork

Look, even if Haley had pulled off an upset win in New Hampshire, it was going to be very hard for her to win the nomination because New Hampshire is basically tailor-made for her demographically. But the fact that Trump still won there, despite that fact, just underscores the fact that he has an iron grip on the GOP right now. For now, Haley seems content to keep soldiering on and drawing out this nomination contest, but Ramaswamy was right when he spoke at Trump’s victory rally: It’s time for the rest of us to start looking toward the general election.

—Nathaniel Rakich, 538

Final thoughts: Haley hangs on, but for how long?

As of now, Haley is looking like she'll lose to Trump by about 10 points in New Hampshire. If she could get under double digits she'd probably be in a stronger position, but a Trump nomination still seems inevitable. And tonight in New Hampshire he attempted some symbolic consolidation, with Scott and Ramaswamy joining him on the state. Still, I think Haley will stay in for as long as she can fund it. She seems emboldened, and maybe she can shake some Trump supporters loose in her home state to keep it going.

Republican presidential hopeful and former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley speaks after results came in for the New Hampshire primaries during a watch party in Concord, New Hampshire, Jan. 23, 2024.
Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images

—Meredith Conroy, 538 contributor