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New Hampshire primary voters wrestle with Haley admonition to ‘correct’ Iowa

HAMPTON, New Hampshire — Granite State officials are very proud of holding the first-in-the-nation primary — and aren’t shy about throwing shade at the other leadoff state in the nominating process.

“With all due respect to Iowa, thanks for playing but give me a break,” GOP Gov. Chris Sununu told a rally over the weekend. “Did you know [Donald] Trump got 56,000 votes in Iowa, out of over 3 million people!?”

“Is that going to dictate the choice of the Republican Party? I don’t think so,” he went on. “You know what’s going to dictate that choice? You guys.”

Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley leaned in to that spirit when she told a town hall in Milford Jan. 3, “You know Iowa starts it. You know that you correct it.”

Twenty days later, New Hampshire voters will decide whether they do, in fact, want to “correct” Iowa.

While the Hawkeye State has a spotty track record of picking Republican nominees, with George W. Bush in 2000 the last contested caucus winner to get the nod, New Hampshire foretold the GOP choice in 2008, 2012 and 2016, the last three times Republicans had a contested primary.

And with the 77-year-old Trump coming off a near-30-point blowout win in Iowa last week, and boasting a double-digit polling lead in New Hampshire, the “correction” may turn into a coronation.

“Absolutely,” Lizabeth McLaughlin, a Haley backer from Marlborough, told The Post when asked if New Hampshire’s result meant more than Iowa’s.

“We only got like roughly 18% of the voter turnout in Iowa. That’s not an indicator.”

Kim Rice, a Haley backer and former speaker pro tempore of the New Hampshire House of Representatives, stressed that it was all in good fun between the two early states.

“I have a very good friend in Iowa and I said to her, ‘Thank God Iowans have a sense of humor because Ron DeSantis tried to turn it into something negative,’” Rice said.

“My friend in Iowa, she and I always go back and forth over who’s actually the first in the nation. We’ll see what happens.”

While Haley voters are hoping to change the narrative, backers of Trump are totally fine with following Iowa’s lead.

“My friend in Iowa, she and I always go back and forth over who’s actually the first in the nation. We’ll see what happens.”

“New Hampshire is basically a Trump state,” said Dennis Malboeuf, 58.

Trump himself has basked in polling data showing him with a commanding lead.

“Now we’re down to two people and I think one person will be gone probably tomorrow. The other one will be gone in November,” Trump proclaimed at a rally in Laconia on primary eve.

Manufacturing worker Andy Davis, 56, from Hopkinton, was confident that New Hampshire voters would get behind the former president.

“I think she’s just part of the system,” he said of Haley. “Whenever the media goes after somebody or if the system goes after somebody, they’re probably telling the truth.”

“I was never a Trump fan prior to politics. I thought he was just a loudmouth New Yorker,” he went on. “But I like what he’s done for the country.”

Former first son Donald Trump Jr. was careful about expectation-setting, though he had no doubt what the final outcome would be.

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