WASHINGTON – Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley derided former President Donald Trump‘s strong lead in the 2024 Republican presidential race on Sunday. She stated that Americans are “getting tired of the drama and the chaos and the negativity.”
“I’ve always said that he was the right president at the right time and I agree with a lot of his policies,” Haley said on “Fox News Sunday.” But she added, “the problem is drama and chaos follows him, whether fairly or not. It is constantly following him and Americans feel it.”
Haley suggested Trump was partly responsible for the GOP’s underperformance in recent elections and said the party has to “pay the price” for the former president’s presence in the party.
Haley, who served in Trump’s Cabinet as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, has frequently stated on the campaign trail that Trump is unlikely to beat President Joe Biden in a general election. She cited his four criminal indictments and mounting legal troubles.
Instead, Haley, who has seen rising support in critical early voting states after strong debate performances – but still lags far behind Trump – has argued she is the strongest nominee to take on Biden.
“We need to make sure we have a new conservative leader. Republicans have lost the last seven out of eight popular votes for president. The way you do that is you send someone in there that doesn’t just beat Biden by two or three points like Trump does, you get somebody that beats Biden between nine and 13 points,” Haley said, referring to recent polls that show her defeating Biden in a general election by a wider margin than her primary rivals.
If Trump becomes the nominee, she said, Republicans could see more losses on down-ballot races. Haley argued she could lead the party to “win up and down the ticket, governor’s races, congressional seats, all of those seats.”
“It’s not just the presidential. We’re trying to win across the board. I can do that,” she added.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Nikki Haley scoffs at Trump’s lead: ‘Drama and chaos follows him’