FIRST ON FOX: GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley has vowed support for the party’s eventual nominee after she signed a “Beat Biden” pledge required by the Republican National Committee (RNC) to participate in party-sanctioned debates.
With her signing of the document, which was shared exclusively with Fox News Digital on Thursday, Haley, the former governor of South Carolina, is the third candidate to officially qualify for the first Republican presidential primary debate slated to be held later this month in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the pledge earlier this week.
“I, Nikki R. Haley, affirm that I agree to appear in only Primary and General Election debates that have been sanctioned by the Republican National Committee, pursuant to Rule 10(a)(11) of The Rules of the Republican Party. I acknowledge and accept that if I fail to sign this pledge or if I participate in any debate that has not been sanctioned by the Republican National Committee, I will not be eligible to participate in any further Republican National Committee sanctioned debates,” the document stated.
RAMASWAMY FIRST GOP PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE TO QUALIFY FOR DEBATE WITH PLEDGE TO SUPPORT EVENTUAL PARTY NOMINEE
“Additionally, I affirm that if I do not win the 2024 Republican nomination for President of the United States, I will honor the will of the primary voters and support the 2024 Republican presidential nominee in order to save our country and beat Joe Biden,” the pledge adds. “I further pledge that I will not seek to run as an independent or write-in candidate nor will I seek or accept the nomination for president of any other party.”
Hammering down on a point she has made in the past, Haley crossed out President Biden’s name in the pledge and wrote, “President Harris,” signaling that she believes this race is not against Biden in the long run and instead against Vice President Kamala Harris.
“I have said, and I say it to every Republican candidate who’s going to get on that debate stage, I will support the Republican that comes out of that. Certainly I want it to be me, but I’m gonna support the Republican because I don’t believe that America can afford President Kamala Harris and we need to remember that,” Haley said during a Fox News Channel appearance last month.
THESE REPUBLICANS HAVE MET QUALIFICATIONS FOR THE FIRST GOP PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE
In June, Haley made similar comments, insisting that a vote for Biden is a vote for “President Harris.”
RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel made the “Beat Biden pledge” a requirement for her party’s candidates to be able to participate in its official debates, a rule that flies in the face of former President Donald Trump’s previous suggestion he might not support the eventual winner of the Republican nomination.
According to the pledge, candidates must affirm they will only appear in debates sanctioned by the RNC, and, should they fail to sign the pledge or participate in a non-RNC sanctioned debate, they will not be able to participate in any further party sanctioned debates.
In addition to the pledge, candidates must also reach 1% in three national polls, or 1% in two national polls and two state-specific polls from the early voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada in order to qualify for the debate. The polls must also be recognized by the RNC and must be conducted on or after July 1.
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Additionally, to reach the debate stage, candidates must have 40,000 unique donors to their campaign committee (or exploratory committee), with “at least 200 unique donors per state or territory in 20+ states and/or territories,” according to the RNC criteria.
Fox News’ Brandon Gillespie and Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.