KINGSTON, New Hampshire — Republicans in New Hampshire won’t follow the lead of several early primary and caucus states canceling contests to help ensure President Trump wins renomination against GOP primary challengers, Gov. Chris Sununu said.
The Republican state chief executive said the first-in-the-nation primary state won’t go the way of South Carolina, which traditionally follows the Granite State, but where the state party this weekend voted to cancel its 2020 contest. Republican state committees in Nevada and Kansas are doing the same thing for planned caucuses. And Arizona Republicans are expected to consider in September scrapping its primary next year.
Party officials in those states say the moves are aimed at cost savings since Trump is an incumbent and virtually assured of renomination. But critics say the moves are thinly-veiled efforts to protect Trump from real competition for the Republican nomination. Three Republican primary challengers who have held statewide or federal office are running against Trump — former South Carolina governor and Rep. Mark Sanford, who jumped in Sunday, former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld, and ex-Rep. Joe Walsh of Illinois, who served a single term in the House 2011-13.