“ ‘I can’t believe that Biden is letting China get away with so much.’ ”
— Nikki Haley
That line above came from Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley, as she spoke Friday at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference. Haley, a former U.S. ambassador to the U.N. and ex-governor of South Carolina, also described China as “the strongest, most disciplined enemy we’ve ever faced,” while criticizing how President Joe Biden has responded to Beijing.
“Did you ever think that Americans would look to the sky and see a Chinese spy balloon looking back down at us? It was a national embarrassment,” she said. In addition, the 51-year-old Haley deployed a line she’s used before that touches on the fact that Biden is 80 and former President Donald Trump is 76. “China thinks the American era has passed. So do our enemies, but they’re wrong. America is not past our prime. It’s just that our politicians are past theirs,” she said. Haley made her remarks ahead of CPAC speeches by two other Republicans who have declared that they’re running for their party’s 2024 presidential nomination — Trump and long-shot candidate Vivek Ramaswamy. Ramaswamy is due to speak later Friday at the four-day conference that’s being held just outside Washington, D.C., while the former president is slated to appear on its final day, Saturday. Related: Here are the Republicans running for president — or seen as potential 2024 candidates Many of the GOP’s best-known possible 2024 candidates — from Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to former Vice President Mike Pence — are skipping CPAC as its organizers grapple with controversy and questions over the event’s role. See: All declared GOP candidates will be at CPAC, enthuses Schlapp. Staying away: Pence, DeSantis, Youngkin. Also read: Ron DeSantis skips CPAC, says Republicans act like ‘potted plants’ when facing ‘woke ideology’