Nikki Haley’s camp faults Trump for Tom Suozzi’s victory: ‘A weight against Republicans’

Nikki Haley’s camp faults Trump for Tom Suozzi’s victory: ‘A weight against Republicans’

Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley’s campaign pinned the blame squarely on former President Donald Trump for Democrats flipping ex-Rep. George Santos’ seat.

Haley’s team argued that Trump was a drag on the race in which former Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY) overcame a spirited challenge from Republican Mazi Pilip to reclaim his old seat in the competitive Long Island district.

“Let’s just say the quiet part out loud. Donald Trump continues to be a huge weight against Republican candidates,” Haley campaign national spokesperson Olivia Perez-Cubas said in a statement.

“Despite the enormous and obvious failings of Joe Biden, we just lost another winnable Republican House seat because voters overwhelmingly reject Donald Trump.”

Haley, 52, who served as Trump’s US ambassador to the UN from 2017 to 2018, has ramped up her attacks on her old boss in recent weeks.

Trump has managed to win every Republican presidential contest where delegates were up for grabs and continues to maintain a toehold on the polls. His allies have called on Haley to drop out.

The 77-year-old blasted Pilip, a 47-year-old Nassau County legislator previously registered as a Democrat, after her loss.

Nikki Haley

Nikki Haley has long premised her pitch to voters that she is more electable than Donald Trump. Getty Images

“Republicans just don’t learn, but maybe she was still a Democrat?” Trump lamented on his Truth Social platform.

Claiming to tout a “99% Endorsement Success Rate in Primaries,” Trump posited that Pilip simply lacked the MAGA bona fides.

“Just watched this very foolish woman, Mazi Melesa Pilip, running in a race where she didn’t endorse me and tried to ‘straddle the fence,’ when she would have easily WON if she understood anything about MODERN DAY politics in America.”

Donald Trump

Donald Trump ripped into Mazi Pilip after she lost to Tom Suozzi. REUTERS

Santos (R-NY), 35, was jettisoned from his seat last year on the heels of a blistering report from the House Committee on Ethics alleging he “blatantly stole” money from his campaign and lied to donors.

The disgraced former rep. was previously bested by Suozzi in 2020, but later won the seat in 2022 when Suozzi wasn’t vying for it. President Biden won the district by roughly eight points that same year.

Suozzi’s victory over Pilip rang in right around Biden’s 2020 margin of victory, according to the latest voting tally.

Mazi Pilip

Mazi Pilip ran a spirited campaign to keep George Santos’ old seat in Republican hands. JUSTIN LANE/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Tom Suozzi

Tom Suozzi gave Democrats a key pickup in Congress amid the GOP’s razor-thin majority. Getty Images

As a result of Suozzi’s triumph, the House Republican’s already slim majority will be further whittled down to 219-213 after he is sworn in, which is expected to take place on Feb. 28.

“Give us a real candidate in the district for November,” Trump added. “Suozzi, I know him well, can be easily beaten!”

Haley and Trump are poised to square off next in her home state of South Carolina on Feb. 24. She is trailing him significantly in all the polls.


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