As Ron DeSantis dropped out of the 2024 presidential race two days before the New Hampshire Republican primary, polls were placing the Florida Governor in third place far behind front-runner Donald Trump and former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.
A poll from CNN conducted by the University of New Hampshire placed Mr Trump at 50 per cent in Tuesday’s primary, with Ms Haley in second place at 39 per cent. Meanwhile, Mr DeSantis was polling at just 6 per cent, according to the data released on Sunday.
This latest poll from CNN indicated a marked change from their previous poll taken ahead of the Iowa caucuses, showing Mr Trump at 39 per cent and Ms Haley much closer at 32 per cent. Mr DeSantis, however, was still trailing far behind at 5 per cent even in early January.
Hours after the poll came out, Mr DeSantis announced he was suspending his campaign and endorsing Mr Trump.
Earlier this week, a Suffolk University survey showed similar figures, with Mr Trump at 16 points over Ms Haley and Mr DeSantis at just 5 per cent. Both of these late-January polls placed Mr DeSantis under the 10 per cent of votes necessary to be eligible for delegates in the state, per New Hampshire Republican primary rules. The Florida governor was coming off a second-place win in the Iowa Republican caucuses.
The numbers came hours after Mr DeSantis cancelled his Sunday morning media appearances and added a New Hampshire campaign event to his Sunday evening schedule. This led to speculation that the end of his campaign could be near, while his press secretary responded at the time that the cancellations were due to a “scheduling issue”. Hours later Mr DeSantis announced he was dropping out.
Before that announcement, Ana Navarro, senior political commentator for CNN, said: “I don’t know if it’s today, tomorrow, next week or the following week, but obviously the man has run out of steam, out of options, out of money, out of a path.
“It gives him a way of easing back because he’s got to come back to Florida and be governor,” she later continued.
The Independent contacted the DeSantis campaign for comment.