Apr 3, 2024 - News

Biden ad targets Haley voters in Arizona and other swing states

A woman on a stage walks past a row of American flags.

Nikki Haley in March. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

President Biden's most aggressive push yet to court Republican Nikki Haley's primary voters has launched in Arizona and seven other swing states with a new digital ad.

Why it matters: Biden's campaign believes it can recruit Republican and independent Haley supporters who've made clear in polls that they won't support former President Trump, the presumed GOP nominee.

  • The ads, which launched Friday, will also run in Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

State of play: Haley won nearly 18% of the Arizona vote in last month's Republican presidential preference election, even though she had suspended her campaign halfway through early voting.

  • Trump underperformed in large swaths of East Valley that typically vote heavily Republican, ABC 15 data and political analyst Garrett Archer found.

Reality check: The overwhelming majority of Arizona voters cast early ballots, making it difficult to determine how Haley performed before and after she halted her campaign.

Zoom in: Since Haley dropped out of the Republican race on March 6, Trump — who frequently insulted her on social media and at campaign events — has done little to reach out to her supporters.

  • Biden's 30-second ad, called "Save America. Join Us," includes a montage of Trump mocking his former UN ambassador as "crazy," "very angry," and a "bird brain."
  • It ends with an exchange in which a reporter asks Trump how he plans to bring Haley voters onto his team. Trump responds: "I'm not sure we need too many."

Between the lines: The ad will run for three weeks and will target specific ZIP codes where election data indicate Haley did particularly well against Trump, the campaign said.

  • "We saw Nikki Haley take 30% or 40% out of Trump's hide throughout the primaries. And then when it's all said and done, Trump said: 'If you were part of that campaign, I don't want you,' " Biden battleground states director Dan Kanninen told Axios.
  • "We took note of that. We noticed where she got how many, and you bet [we] would engage those folks and invite them into our campaign."

The big picture: When she exited the race, Haley encouraged Trump to "earn" her voters' support. She hasn't endorsed him or Biden.

Flashback: In 2020, Trump became the first Republican presidential nominee to lose Arizona since 1996.

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