The theory that Donald Trump will pick Nikki Haley as his vice president refuses to die – in spite of the growing evidence that he won’t.
Haley, for one, is adamant that it will not happen. Today, at a meet-and-greet with voters in Mary Ann’s diner in Amherst, New Hampshire, a voter floated the idea. She grimaced and said: ‘I’ve never said that. That’s my opponent saying that… I don’t want to be anyone’s vice president. That’s off the table.’
She could change her mind, of course. Politicians do, and analysts will keep saying that Haley would help Trump appeal to aspirational suburban women and so on. But Trumpworld loathes Haley and Donald Trump Jr has been reassuring fans that he will stop his father from nominating her.
Outside the diner at the Haley event, some defiant Trump fans were standing around with their pick-up trucks and MAGA flags as a stereo blared out Lee Greenwood’s ‘Proud to be an American’.
They told me that they wanted Trump’s former spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders, or Vivek Ramaswamy, who has just ended his presidential run, to be Trump’s VP.
Like many Trump voters, they felt sure that Haley is backed by dark globalist money – ‘I’ve heard it’s rumours that it’s Blackrock,’ said one. Trump would make those people pay for their crimes, they insisted. ‘It’s time for them to be held accountable’, said Richard Griffith, a septuagenarian landscape architect.
Will they boo Haley when she walks past, I asked. ‘No no,’ said Richard. ‘We’re not activists. We’re just leaving, actually.’
Inside the diner, there were a few Haley admirers, mostly the conservative democrats and independents New Hampshirites we’ve been told about so much about in recent weeks.