Hours after tussling on the debate stage Wednesday night, Republican presidential candidates Nikki Haley and Vivek Ramaswamy continued their war of words on FOX News Thursday in their fight for the party nomination.
The third GOP primary debate in Miami turned ugly and personal between the two candidates as Ramaswamy took aim at Haley’s pledge to ban the short-form video hosting service TikTok – which is a subsidiary of a Chinese-owned company – over national security concerns.
“She made fun of me for actually joining TikTok while her own daughter was actually using the app for a long time,” Ramaswamy argued. “So you might want to take care of your family first before preaching to anyone else.”
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Haley quickly snapped back.
“Leave my daughter out of your voice,” she told Ramaswamy, later calling him “scum.”
Haley told “America’s Newsroom” her response was “showing a lot of restraint.”
“We’ve got real issues on that debate stage that differentiate us, and that’s what I wanted to talk about. You know, he threw a petty shot there. It says more about him than it does about me,” she said.
“This is a serious time in our country. And this is not the time that you need to have these personal hits. My daughter’s 25 years old.”
Ramaswamy, who called Haley “Dick Cheney in three-inch heels” at the debate, told “FOX & Friends” Thursday that the Republican Party needs a “generational change.”
“George Bush and Dick Cheney did lead us into wars for 20 years, racked up 7 trillion in national debt in Iraq and Afghanistan,” he told “FOX & Friends Weekend” co-host Rachel Campos-Duffy in Miami.
“Thousands of people my age went to die in those wars that did not advance the American interest. So, yes, I’m keen to make sure we don’t make those same mistakes again to keep us out of World War III, declare independence from China, use our military to protect our own homeland instead of somebody else’s borders halfway around the world.”
Haley emphasized the “big differences” between her and the political newcomer.
“He doesn’t think we should be helping Israel. He thinks that we should let Putin have Ukraine. He’s fine with using Taiwan until we have all the chips we need, and then he’ll give it out,” the former ambassador said.
Ramaswamy, meanwhile, argued that entering wars in places like Ukraine puts America at risk rather than advancing the national interest.
“The Russia-China alliance is stronger than it’s ever been. And if we enter World War III or sleepwalk our way into it now, that’s a danger right here for Americans in our homeland. So we can’t lull ourselves into submission,” he said.
“Experience is not the same as foreign policy wisdom,” he concluded. “I think it’s going to take a different generation to lead this nation forward.”
In a sign of Haley’s ascendancy in the 2024 GOP nomination race, the candidate was repeatedly in the spotlight during the two-hour debate, just a few miles from where former President Trump – the commanding Republican front-runner – was simultaneously holding a rally.
The former South Carolina governor had been on a roll thanks to well-received performances at the first two showdowns that helped propel her into battle with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in the race to become Trump’s main rival.
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FOX News’ Paul Steinhauser and Danielle Wallace contributed to this report.