Note: Exit poll percentages may have updated since this post was published.
Nikki Haley had a better showing in the, given its greater numbers of moderate and independent voters, but it wasn’t enough to overcome Donald Trump. As he did in Iowa, Trump received strong support among the Republican base, and won with most key demographic groups.
And while more voters in New Hampshire than Iowa were concerned about Trump’s legal woes — more than half still said that if he were convicted of a crime he would still be fit for the presidency.
New Hampshire voters were looking for a fighter
Trump was boosted by the types of candidate qualities— they were looking for a fighter and someone who shares their values. Trump led Haley among voters who picked these qualities.
Haley overwhelmingly won among those who wanted someone with the right temperament, but fewer voters picked that as their top quality.
The last few days seem to have shifted the momentum toward Haley. Among the one in five voters who made their decision in the last few days, most backed Haley.
It wasn’t enough, though. The overwhelming majority of the electorate made up their minds before that, and they went for Trump.
Independents backed Haley, but Trump won Republicans
Independent (or undeclared voters) can vote in the Republican primary, and independents came out in large numbers. More than four in 10 of the electorate were self-identified independents, compared to just 16% in Iowa. And about six in 10 independents backed Haley.
But this was still a Republican primary, and Haley was not that competitive with Trump among self-identified Republicans, winning only about a quarter of their support.
Fewer primary voters in New Hampshire considered themselves part of the MAGA movement, compared to Iowa, but nearly all who did voted for Trump.
And this electorate was still mostly conservative — and that favored Trump, too.
Like he did in Iowa, Trump was strong across many demographic groups — both younger and older voters voted for Trump. Trump won the majority of men, and ran about even with Haley among women.
Haley led Trump among New Hampshire voters with college degrees, but Trump’s lead among those without college degrees was larger, and there were slightly more of those voters.
Economy and immigration top issues for New Hampshire voters
The economy and immigration were the top issues on voters’ minds and Trump won the support of voters who picked them as most important.
More than half of New Hampshire GOP primary voters said most undocumented immigrants in the U.S. should be deported, something that Trump has threatened to do.
Haley won voters who prioritized foreign policy and abortion, but fewer voters selected them as top issues.
Trump’s voters described their vote as strongly for him: eight in 10 of his voters said that.
But more of Haley’s support was against Trump than for Haley. Only one in three of Haley’s voters said they strongly favored her.
Looking ahead, big majorities of each candidates’ supporters would be dissatisfied if the other became the nominee.
About eight in 10 Trump voters would be dissatisfied if Haley wins the, and even more Haley voters would be dissatisfied if Trump becomes the nominee.