Trump Unlikely to Choose Nikki Haley as Vice President

Haley Asserts Independence in Heated Political Exchange

by Zain ul Abedin
Trump Unlikely to Choose Nikki Haley as Vice President
© Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

In a striking development, former President Donald Trump has explicitly stated that Nikki Haley, his former ambassador to the United Nations, is not in contention for the vice-presidential slot in his campaign. Speaking at a campaign event in Concord, New Hampshire, Trump dismissed Haley’s potential for the role, saying, "She is not presidential timber," and adding, "that probably means that she's not going to be chosen as vice president." This announcement intensifies the ongoing political drama as Trump sharpens his rhetoric against Haley, who has been trying to narrow his lead in the New Hampshire primary.

In a scathing critique, Trump questioned Haley's capabilities, asserting, "She's not tough enough. She's not smart enough. And she wasn't respected enough. She cannot do this job." He emphasized that Haley would struggle in international dealings, particularly with leaders like President Xi and Putin.

Haley Defies Trump's Critique

Haley, on her part, has remained steadfast in her stance, eschewing the idea of playing second fiddle. During a campaign stop in Iowa, she declared, "I am not running to be vice president. I don't play for second." She has also expressed confidence in her prospects, challenging the assumption that Trump would be in a position to choose a vice president.

Amidst these developments, Trump has been sharpening his attacks on Haley, portraying her as a candidate who panders to Democrats and labelling her as a 'liberal' Haley, a self-proclaimed "Tea Party governor," has refuted these accusations, underscoring her conservative governance.

Trump's relationship with Haley has seen a dramatic shift. Upon her resignation as UN ambassador, he lauded her as a "fantastic person" and "very successful" governor. However, his recent comments suggest a strategic appointment, made to pave the way for his ally, Henry McMaster, in South Carolina.

VP Speculation Intensifies

The vice-presidential speculation continues as GOP Chairwoman Elise Stefanik and South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, both rumored as potential candidates, appeared with Trump at the New Hampshire event.

Stefanik expressed her willingness to serve in any capacity in a future Trump administration, while Scott endorsed Trump, emphasizing the need for a unifying president. Trump, meanwhile, hints at having made his vice-presidential choice, though his campaign remains non-committal.

The speculation also includes names like South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem and Georgia Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, both vocal Trump supporters during the primary season. As the political landscape heats up, all eyes are on Trump's next move in this unfolding political saga.