Trump wins Michigan GOP primary

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Former President Trump easily won Michigan’s GOP primary Tuesday, according to a projection from Decision Desk HQ, extending his early-state dominance over rival Nikki Haley.

Trump won the Great Lakes State’s presidential preference primary just days after beating Haley in her home state of South Carolina, clearing the last major contest before the dozen-plus primaries and caucuses on Super Tuesday next week.

Polls showed the former president boasting a massive lead over Haley heading into Tuesday, with Decision Desk HQ/The Hill’s polling average for the primary putting Trump up a staggering 48 points over the former U.N. ambassador.

Trump ultimately fell below those expectations. As of Tuesday night, he was leading Haley by under 40 points.

In remarks to the Michigan GOP after the race was called, Trump said the numbers were “far greater than we even anticipated” and pointed toward the general election in November.

“We win Michigan, we win the whole thing,” Trump said.

After her Palmetto State loss Saturday, Haley re-upped her promise to stay in the race even as she continues to trail Trump, pointing toward Super Tuesday, March 5. She didn’t heavily invest in Michigan’s contest, leading observers to see the state as all but sealed for Trump.

Haley’s camp framed the Michigan results as a “warning sign” for Trump the general election.

“Joe Biden is losing about 20 percent of the Democratic vote today, and many say it’s a sign of his weakness in November. Donald Trump is losing about 35 percent of the vote. That’s a flashing warning sign for Trump in November,” the campaign’s national spokesperson, Olivia Perez-Cubas said in a statement. She noted Michigan Republicans lost control of the state Legislature and the governor’s mansion in recent years, and that the state party has been embroiled in turmoil.

“Let this serve as another warning sign that what has happened in Michigan will continue to play out across the country. So long as Donald Trump is at the top of the ticket, Republicans will keep losing to the socialist left,” Perez-Cubas said.

Only some of Michigan’s 55 delegates will be allocated based on the night’s results, amid a new nominating setup and ongoing confusion in the state’s leadership.

A majority of the delegates are set to be allocated Saturday, when the state party holds a convention. Recent discord within the Michigan GOP, however, led to confusion after two figures claimed the top leadership role and slated two separate conventions for the weekend.

A faction led by former Michigan Rep. Pete Hoekstra, who’s been backed by the national party and by Trump to take the reins of the Michigan GOP, has plans to host one convention — while Kristina Karamo, who had insisted she was still in charge of the state party after her ouster last month, made plans to host a rival convention on the same day.

But a judge ruled Tuesday that Karamo was removed from the party chair position back in January and that any of her actions since “purporting to be taken on behalf of the Michigan Republican State Committee are void and have no effect.”

Trump affirmed Hoekstra in his post-race remarks Tuesday, saying he’ll be a “fantastic chairman, one of the best ever.”

Trump now appears set to head into Super Tuesday with a string of early-state wins after beating Haley in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, as well as snagging all the delegates available in Nevada. He also won the U.S. Virgin Islands’ GOP caucus earlier this month.

Meanwhile, on the Democratic ticket in Michigan, President Biden is dealing with a push for a protest vote amid frustration from progressives over the administration’s actions around the war in Gaza.

Trump flipped the state out of Democrats’ hands in 2016, but Biden won in 2020 — setting the state up to be a key battleground in 2024.

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