In a significant political development in South Carolina, Rep. Nancy Mace has endorsed former President Donald Trump over Nikki Haley for the 2024 Republican primary, as reported by the Associated Press. Mace’s endorsement, announced a day before the New Hampshire primary, marks a pivotal moment in the GOP presidential race, especially given her previous neutrality and the fact that Haley is also from South Carolina.
Mace had refrained from endorsing any candidate while two prominent South Carolinians, former Gov. Haley and Sen. Tim Scott, were in the race. Her decision to support Trump, who backed her opponent in the 2022 congressional primary, signals a notable shift in the state’s Republican dynamics. Mace’s endorsement adds to Trump’s momentum following his victory in the Iowa caucuses and consolidates his support among South Carolina’s Republican leadership.
The endorsement is particularly impactful given Mace’s history with both Trump and Haley. In 2021, Mace criticized Trump for his role in the January 6 Capitol attack, stating that his actions had erased his accomplishments. This criticism led Trump to label her as a terrible candidate and seek challengers against her. Despite this, Mace has chosen to back Trump in the current primary, citing his first-term record as a deciding factor.
Mace’s endorsement of Trump over Haley, who had previously supported her and campaigned on her behalf, underscores the complex and evolving relationships within the GOP. Haley, having recently emerged as the main GOP candidate to challenge Trump following Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s exit from the race, now faces an increasingly consolidated opposition within her home state.
The decision by Mace, as reported by the Associated Press, reflects the strategic calculations and shifting alliances within the Republican Party as it gears up for the 2024 presidential election. This endorsement could have significant implications for the South Carolina primary and the broader GOP nomination race.