Nikki Haley backs Ukraine, douses Bud Light transgender promo
By MATTHEW MEDSGER, Boston Herald
Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley’s stump speech didn’t completely impress the audience at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics.
Haley, on Wednesday, became the first declared presidential candidate to address the crowd at Politics and Eggs, an occasional speaker series hosted by Saint Anselm College which, since its start in 1995, has become a “must stop” event for White House hopefuls.
Sticking mostly to modern Republican talking points, Haley probably didn’t sound too much different from other former governors who have addressed the breakfast, like Larry Hogan or Asa Hutchinson, both of whom spoke at the school last year.
She elicited fewer laughs than former Vice President Mike Pence and less sporadic applause than former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, both of whom also took the stage in Goffstown ahead of the 2024 presidential election cycle.
The most striking difference between Haley and her fellow Republican primary candidates, both declared and not, was her steadfast commitment to maintaining U.S. support for Ukraine as the eastern European country continues to defend their territory from invasion by Russian military forces.
“What’s important to know about this war that is happening with Ukraine and Russia is that it is bigger than Ukraine. This is about a war for freedom and it’s one that we have to win,” she said. “We need to believe tyrants when they tell us what they are going to do.”
“This is about preventing war,” she continued. “A win for Russia is a win for China. We can never forget that. Now that doesn’t mean we give money to Ukraine, it doesn’t mean we put troops on the ground, but it means we work with our allies and we make sure they have the equipment and the ammunition to win.”
The audience seemed shocked into silence when Haley attacked transgendered people generally and Dylan Mulvaney specifically, the audience growing still as she referenced Mulvaney’s participation in a Bud Light promotion.
“That is a guy, dressed up like a girl, making fun of women,” she said.
Jillian Dorazio, a student from Saint Anselm, could be seen visibly rolling her eyes as Haley continued the attack, occasionally shooting shocked looks at her fellow students who sat seemingly stunned by the rhetoric used.
“I think there is definitely a contrast in opinion between the older generations and our generation when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community and I think that’s just a very sensitive topic,” Dorazio told the Herald after. “I think she was saying some pretty divisive things on that, that I think could drive away the younger vote. That’s what kind of got my attention. I definitely disagree with how hard of a stance she takes on that.”