Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley addressed former President Donald Trump’s recent comments about her during a CNN town hall event on Thursday night. Speaking to moderator Jake Tapper, she suggested that she is not concerned about the GOP presidential candidate’s attacks against her that had him claim that she is not a natural-born citizen of the United States.
Tapper asked her about Trump’s post on Truth Social this week in which he misspelt her legal first name, Nimarata, writing, “Anyone listening to Nikki ‘Nimrada’ Haley’s wacked out speech last night, would think that she won the Iowa Primary. She didn’t, and she couldn’t even beat a very flawed Ron DeSanctimonious, who’s out of money, and out of hope.”
The former president had also amplified a post that questioned Haley’s eligibility for president based on her being the daughter of Indian immigrants.
But Haley said she is all too familiar with Trump’s “name-calling” antics.
“The name-calling? I know Trump well. That’s what he does when he feels threatened. That’s what he does when he feels insecure. I don’t take these things personally. It doesn’t bother me,” she said.
According to the former UN ambassador, Trump’s elevated attacks against her are because he knows that she makes a tough challenger.
“I know that I am a threat. I know that’s why he’s doing that. It’s not going to waste any energy from me. I’m going to continue to focus on the things people want to talk about and not get into the name-calling back with him,” she said.
After Trump’s win in Iowa’s caucuses on Monday night, Haley, who came third behind Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is hoping to win in New Hampshire next week or at least, come closely behind first place.
While many Republican strategists believe that the fate of the GOP presidential primaries would be sealed if Trump wins in New Hampshire, Haley believes that finishing second place is still good for her.
“It’s not going to waste any energy from me. I’m going to continue to focus on the things people want to talk about and not get into the name-calling back with him. We want to do better than we did in Iowa. That’s my personal goal: to make sure we do better than we did in Iowa,” she said.
New Hampshire Gov. Sununu, who is backing Haley’s bid, has also conceded that her getting “a strong second” in the primary is “great.”
New Hampshire @GovChrisSununu says if Nikki Haley "can post a strong second" in New Hampshire, "that is great and we're going to do that."
— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) January 14, 2024