Former South Carolina governor, U.N. ambassador and Trump-alternative-of-the-moment Nikki Haley is apparently convinced the road to the Republican presidential nomination runs through one person, and that one person is … Vivek Ramaswamy.
Yet, if the conservative activist and Gen Z favorite bothers giving as good as he gets from Haley — and criticizes her and other female members of the Republican establishment — he’s a sexist. Talk about hiding behind your own skirt.
To be fair, Haley and Ramaswamy may have the most serious policy disagreement among the remaining contenders not named Donald Trump — that being foreign policy and the influence of China.
The hawkish Haley, not unreasonably, believes Russia and China are major geopolitical threats and need to be countered with a vigorously interventionist foreign policy. The younger Ramaswamy, also not unreasonably, is part of a younger generation that has watched in real-time as America’s foreign misadventures in places like Afghanistan and Iraq imploded and are more wary of those who apply the same mindset to our conflicts with Beijing and Moscow.
The first salvo was fired in the second debate, where Haley criticized Ramaswamy for trying to reach younger voters via a TikTok video with influencer Jake Paul, given that the social media platform has ties to the Chinese government.
“This is infuriating because TikTok is one of the most dangerous social media apps that we could have and what you’ve got,” Haley said, adding: “Honestly, every time I hear you I feel a little bit dumber from what you say.”
Nikki Haley to Vivek Ramaswamy:
“Honestly, every time I hear you I feel a little bit dumber.” pic.twitter.com/gdMAbs3swy
— Townhall.com (@townhallcom) September 28, 2023
This culminated in a series of tense exchanges during last week’s third debate, in which Haley called Ramaswamy “scum” for pointing out that her daughter uses the same platform she’s scolding him for using.
Nikki Haley to Vivek Ramaswamy after he brings up that her daughter uses TikTok: “Leave my daughter out of your voice…Youre just scum.” pic.twitter.com/fVRO6FJvlc
— Charlie Kirk (@charliekirk11) November 9, 2023
Not only that, but Ramaswamy made the mistake of — j’accuse, Vivek! — calling out another woman, Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel, after yet another disappointing performance in off-year elections that culminated in major losses the previous night.
“We’ve become a party of losers, at the end of the day. We as a cancer the Republican establishment,” he said.
“Let’s speak the truth, I mean since Ronna McDaniel took over as chairwoman of the RNC in 2017, we have lost 2018, 2020, 2022, no red wave that never came, we got trounced last night in 2023.”
🚨 BREAKING: Vivek Ramaswamy destroys Ronna Romney McDaniel, demand she come on stage and RESIGN, says Joe Rogan and Elon Musk should be hosting the debate instead of hacks like Kristen Welker who pushed the Russian Collusion Hoax 🔥 pic.twitter.com/hxcBxGrdPN
— Benny Johnson (@bennyjohnson) November 9, 2023
He also went on to criticize NBC moderator Kristin Welker, who was one of the Russiagate-pushing hacks in the establishment media, for being brought in to grill Republicans. And, to top it off, he called both Haley and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis “Dick Cheney in three-inch heels.”
Bootgate makes its way to the RNC Stage “Do you want a leader from a different generation … or do you want Dick Cheney in three-inch heels? In which case, we’ve got two of them on stage tonight.”
— ALX 🇺🇸 (@alx) November 9, 2023
So, after implicitly calling Vivek a tool of Beijing for appearing in a TikTok video, explicitly saying she “feel[s] a little bit dumber from what you say,” then calling him “scum” because he brought up the fact her own family uses the same service she’s been busy tarring him with by saying it makes him a tool of China, the real threat to civility is … sexist ol’ Vivek.
In an appearance on a podcast published on Tuesday, responding to a remark from the host saying that “Nikki’s got the best thing going right now because she’s turned Vivek into her own human punching bag,” she insisted the enmity was really Vivek’s problem — and part of it was borne out of misogyny toward the birthing people.
“It’s not what I want,” she insisted during her appearance on the “Ruthless” podcast.
“You know, he goes in there with these planned comments and the three-inch heels [remark], and I don’t go in there and practice,” adding that it was just “a lot of gut and instinct.”
“And so I actually was like, you know what, I’m not going to engage, I’m not going to engage him, because we are not going to let this debate be about him,” she avouched.
“But what happens? He comes out of the gate, he hits the female chair of the party, he hits the female anchor on the platform, and then he hits me. And I’m not saying anything … but he might have a girl problem.”
Hey, isn’t this progress in action? Out of four figures far more beloved by the political-media establishment than Ramaswamy is, three are female. In the old days, he’d only have white male hacks to take aim at! This is what diversity, equity and inclusion in failure looks like. Check your privilege, Nikki!
On social media, Ramaswamy posted the clip and noted the obvious: “Sorry Nikki, having two X chromosomes doesn’t immunize you, Ronna McDaniel, or Kristen Welker from criticism. I don’t think Kamala Harris is going to run so there might be an opening for you in the party of identity politics.”
Sorry Nikki, having two X chromosomes doesn’t immunize you, Ronna McDaniel, or Kristen Welker from criticism. I don’t think Kamala Harris is going to run so there might be an opening for you in the party of identity politics. pic.twitter.com/DPigMNQA72
— Vivek Ramaswamy (@VivekGRamaswamy) November 15, 2023
And make no mistake, that’s exactly what this is — straight-up identity politics. This is what one expected to see during the Democrat fracas in 2020. Was Joe Biden too white? Kamala too harsh on black drug users? Pete Buttigieg having too many fundraisers in wine caves? Bernie Sanders making sexist comments about Elizabeth Warren?
The answer to all of those questions should have been: Who gives a flip? Democrats, that’s who. And yes, our president is the president of members of the other party — or no party — too, but we shouldn’t expect Republican candidates to act exactly like that claque of identitarian obsessives.
Vivek’s attack on Haley and the others is that they represent a failed uniparty establishment in America. Haley’s response is to act like an offended member of the left side of the uniparty establishment: call bigotry on him. If she wanted to lend credibility to his arguments, nice work, I suppose.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.