Nikki Haley on Wednesday blasted Donald J. Trump for his backroom effort to twist delegate and first guidelines in his favor, calling it “ironic” that a former president who fueled lies about his 2020 election loss was now attempting to “bully” his strategy to the 2024 Republican nomination.
“It’s ironic for somebody who says that the election was stolen from him — he’s now showing that he’s going to bully his way through to try and win this election,” Ms. Haley stated in an interview on Wednesday in Los Angeles.
She went on to say that the rationale he was attempting so exhausting to win the election was as a result of he wanted “to get off all these court issues that he’s dealing with.” “And I think Americans need to see this for what it is,” she stated.
The rebuke is among the many sharpest assaults Ms. Haley has geared toward Mr. Trump but, as she has taken a extra pugnacious strategy towards her former boss, in search of to oust him from his perch atop the Republican nominating contest.
After maybe her worst end result within the contest to this point — ending second to “None of These Candidates” on Tuesday in Nevada’s main, during which Mr. Trump was not competing — Ms. Haley has stored amping up her criticism of her rival — and her personal social gathering.
In Los Angeles on Wednesday night, Ms. Haley opened along with her now-standard assaults on Mr. Trump, slamming him for a “temper tantrum” in response to her second-place end in New Hampshire, the marketing campaign cash he has spent on private authorized charges and his help from the Republican institution.
“When someone runs for president, this is supposed to be a story of addition, you’re supposed to be bringing people in, not pushing people out of your car,” she advised roughly 300 folks seated in a chic theater inside an Egyptian Revival-style constructing house to the Hollywood Submit 43 chapter of the American Legion, the nation’s largest veterans group.
Subsequent week will mark a yr since Ms. Haley, a former governor of South Carolina and United Nations ambassador in Mr. Trump’s administration, started her marketing campaign, she stated. In that point, “we’ve been able to defeat a dozen other fellas,” she stated, including, “we got one more left.”
Within the Nevada main someday earlier, Ms. Haley completed behind a “None of These Candidates” possibility on the poll. She is going to technically win the competition anyway, as state election legislation says that “only votes cast for the named candidates shall be counted.” However the confounding end result denied her even a symbolic victory. Ms. Haley’s group has lengthy stated she didn’t spend any time or cash in Nevada after the state social gathering modified the principles to favor Mr. Trump, deciding to award all the state’s 26 delegates to the winner of a caucus scheduled for Thursday.
Mr. Trump needled Ms. Haley for her efficiency on social media, calling the end result a “bad night” for her. In a Trump marketing campaign e-mail, Steven Cheung, a spokesman, referred to as it “brutal” and contended that the Haley marketing campaign acknowledged it had “intentionally disrespected the people of Nevada” by refusing to marketing campaign there.
However in a one-on-one interview in a eating corridor within the basement of the American Legion constructing, Ms. Haley dismissed claims that the Nevada loss was vital and unloaded on her personal social gathering, portray the day not as unhealthy for her, however for Republicans.
Ms. Haley forged her social gathering as mired in the identical dysfunction that surrounds the person who has remade it in his picture. She pointed to a collection of occasions that each one occurred within the hours earlier than her second-place end: Republican setbacks in Congress over a border safety invoice; information that Ronna McDaniel plans to step down as chairwoman of the Republican Nationwide Committee; and an appeals courtroom’s rejection of Mr. Trump’s declare that he’s immune from prosecution on fees of attempting to overturn the 2020 election outcomes.
“Donald Trump has his fingerprints on all of it,” she stated, including that “everything he touches ends up in chaos.”
She continued, “How much more chaos are Republicans willing to put up with? How many more times do we have to lose?”
As she has completed on the marketing campaign path and in nationwide interviews this week, Ms. Haley additionally criticized Mr. Trump for holding up a border safety deal.
“I think it was wrong for President Trump to say we’re going to wait until the election because it would hurt him,” she stated. “We can’t wait one more day.”
Ms. Haley went on to challenge confidence that she would keep within the race till Tremendous Tuesday, on March 5. She stays far behind Mr. Trump in most state and nationwide polls and is dealing with robust math as she appears to attract the help of 1,215 G.O.P. delegates. It doesn’t assist that Mr. Trump’s allies have labored behind the scenes to skew main and delegate guidelines to his benefit.
In California, a Tremendous Tuesday state, she is down by more than 50 factors in surveys and Republicans have adopted a algorithm that may give all 169 of its delegates to the candidate who attracts 50 % of the vote statewide — a threshold solely Mr. Trump has cleared in polls.
However, onstage in Los Angeles, Ms. Haley advised the viewers she wasn’t going anyplace.
“I’m in this for the long haul,” she stated to applause. “And this is going to be messy, and this going to hurt, and it’s going to leave some bruises, but at the end of the day, I don’t mind taking them, if you will go right along with me.”