UNITED STATES NEWS

Why AP called South Carolina for Trump: Race call explained

Feb 24, 2024, 5:01 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Associated Press declared Donald Trump the winner of the South Carolina primary as soon as polls closed on Saturday. The race call was based on a comprehensive survey of South Carolina Republican primary voters that showed him defeating Nikki Haley by wide margins in her home state.

Declaring a winner as polls close based on the results of the AP’s VoteCast survey — and before election officials publicly release tabulated votes — is not unusual in heavily lopsided contests like Saturday’s primary. The survey confirms the findings of pre-Election Day polls showing Trump far outpacing Haley statewide.

The AP called the race for Trump at 7 p.m., when polls closed statewide.

VoteCast results show Trump winning on a scale similar to his earlier victories in every contest so far where he appeared on the ballot. In South Carolina, the former president is winning by huge margins in every geographic region of the state, from Upcountry in the north to Low Country on the Atlantic coast.

The survey also shows Trump with sizable leads across the state’s political geography, winning among Republican primary voters from areas that vote heavily Republican in general elections to those that vote heavily Democratic, as well as everywhere in between. Haley’s strongest support according to VoteCast was among voters with postgraduate degrees, but they make up a small share of the overall electorate.

Haley’s likeliest path to victory relied on posting strong numbers in more Democratic-friendly areas, while staying competitive in traditionally Republican areas.

Haley previously served as South Carolina governor and as ambassador to the United Nations. In her last competitive GOP primary in South Carolina in 2010, some of the areas where she performed best were in counties that tend to support Democrats in general elections. But VoteCast shows Haley not performing anywhere near the level she needs to pull off an upset.

Another key metric is votes cast before Election Day, which tend to be among the first votes reported of the night.

Since the issue of early voting became highly politicized in the 2020 presidential election, pre-Election Day votes have skewed Democratic, while Election Day votes have skewed Republican. With much of Haley’s support coming from more moderate voters this campaign, she would have needed a strong showing among early voters in order to withstand the votes later in the night from more conservative voters who voted on Election Day. While VoteCast showed Haley performing slightly better among early voters than she did among Election Day voters, she trailed badly behind Trump in both groups.

When all the votes are counted, Trump may come close to doubling the 33% he received in his 2016 South Carolina victory against a far more competitive six-way field. That year he carried 44 of 46 counties, all but Richland and Charleston, the state’s second- and third-most populous.

VoteCast provides a detailed snapshot of the electorate and helps explain who voted, what issues they care about, how they feel about the candidates and why they voted the way they did.

United States News

Associated Press

Kevin Bacon dances back to “Footloose” high school

PAYSON, Utah (AP) — Actor Kevin Bacon on Saturday returned to the Utah high school where the cult classic movie “Footloose” was filmed more than 40 years. Bacon danced his way to a stage on a Payson High School athletic field Saturday to greet students before what likely was the final prom held at the […]

15 hours ago

Associated Press

Arkansas teen held on murder charge after fatal shooting outside party after high school prom

HELENA-WEST HELENA, Ark. (AP) — An Arkansas teen is in custody on a first-degree murder charge in connection with the fatal shooting of a high school senior outside a party early Sunday following a high school prom. Donterious Stephens, 19, of Helena, turned himself in to authorities Sunday afternoon in the shooting death of Lorenzo […]

15 hours ago

Associated Press

Terry Anderson, AP reporter held captive for years, has died

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Terry Anderson, the globe-trotting Associated Press correspondent who became one of America’s longest-held hostages after he was snatched from a street in war-torn Lebanon in 1985 and held for nearly seven years, has died at 76. Anderson, who chronicled his abduction and torturous imprisonment by Islamic militants in his best-selling 1993 […]

15 hours ago

Associated Press

Suspect in killing of Idaho sheriff’s deputy fatally shot by police, authorities say

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — An Idaho sheriff’s deputy died after being shot by a driver during a traffic stop, and a man believed to be the shooting suspect was later fatally shot by police, authorities said Sunday. Deputy Tobin Bolter was shot as he approached the driver’s window at about 9 p.m. Saturday in Boise, […]

16 hours ago

Associated Press

Woman, 18, dies after being shot at Delaware State University; campus closed

DOVER, Del. (AP) — An 18-year-old woman died after she was shot on the campus of Delaware State University on Sunday, authorities said. Dover police said officers responded at about 1:40 a.m. to a report of shots on the campus. Police said an 18-year-old Wilmington woman who was not a registered student was found with […]

19 hours ago

Associated Press

North Carolina medical marijuana sales begin at Cherokee store

CHEROKEE, N.C. (AP) — Medical marijuana can now be legally purchased in North Carolina with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians opening its long-planned dispensary this weekend on tribal land. Hundreds of people, many with approved medical patient cards to purchase items, celebrated the historic opening of the Great Smoky Cannabis Co. on Saturday within […]

21 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

COLLINS COMFORT MASTERS

Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.

...

DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

Why AP called South Carolina for Trump: Race call explained