Trump wins Nevada caucuses – POLITICO
“The way the party rigged this caucus for Donald Trump, almost no campaigning was done here,” said Chuck Muth, a former Nevada Republican Party executive director and conservative writer.
The back-to-back elections put Trump’s popularity with the GOP base in Nevada on display. But they also reflected the former president’s pull among GOP leaders, with the caucuses orchestrated by a state party whose chair was
indicted after falsely claiming to be an elector for Trump in 2020.
Nevada’s Trump-friendly GOP barred candidates from participating in the caucuses and Tuesday’s primary, which did not award any delegates. Trump allies and prominent Republicans like Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo had urged voters to choose the “none of these” option to send a message to Haley.
Haley criticized the state party for tilting the election in favor of Trump and did not spend time or money campaigning here.
Speaking to supporters in Las Vegas on Thursday night, Trump thanked them and trolled Haley, saying, “I’d like to congratulate ‘none of the above.’” He gave a shout out to former House Speaker Kevin McCarthy in the crowd.
Trump gave an erroneous percentage for the margin that “none of these candidates” beat Haley by, and he misstated the date of Nevada’s primary. It was Tuesday, not Wednesday.
And, as Trump waits for the Supreme Court to rule in a landmark case challenging his eligibility for the ballot, he said: “Is there any way we can call the election for next Tuesday?”
While Trump’s MAGA faithful were pleased with the predictable result, other Republicans in the state expressed surprise and frustration that they couldn’t directly choose between the two remaining candidates.
“Splitting up the candidates, I think caused massive confusion and anger and apathy,” said Amy Tarkanian, a former chair of the Nevada Republican Party.
She lauded Haley for refusing to take part in the caucuses.
“She sent a message saying, “I’m not going to cave in to you guys. Because really what they did is a Trump scheme,” Tarkanian said.
But Tarkanian didn’t let Haley off the hook, either, saying Haley harmed her own cause by not scheduling visits to Reno and Las Vegas.
Lisa Kashinsky contributed to this report.