Nikki Haley, a high-profile Republican and once a close ally to former US President Donald Trump, has blasted him, saying, "He's fallen so far."
"Never did I think he would spiral out like this," Haley said in an interview with Politico of Trump. "I don't feel like I know who he is anymore."
"The person that I worked with is not the person that I have watched since the election," said the former US ambassador to the United Nations.
She said the former Republican president had let them down. "We need to acknowledge he let us down."
Haley criticized him for lying to his supporters, inciting his loyalists to "stop the steal" by launching the deadly January 6 attack on Capitol Hill, and expressed anger over his treatment of former Vice President Mike Pence in the Congress on that day.
"I'm angry ... Mike has been nothing but loyal to that man. He's been nothing but a good friend of that man. ... I am so disappointed in the fact that [despite] the loyalty and friendship he had with Mike Pence, that he would do that to him. Like, I'm disgusted by it," Haley told Politico.
Haley, who is of Indian background was one of Trump's most respected allies, said she was so upset with Trump that she had not spoken to him since the deadly incident. "He went down a path he shouldn't have, and we shouldn't have followed him, and we shouldn't have listened to him. And we can't let that ever happen again."
Haley said that what Trump did during his tenure was a departure from accepted standards and it pushed him out of the picture for good.
“I don’t think he’s going to be in the picture,” she said, adding, “I don’t think he can. He’s fallen so far.”
Haley, 49, who is expected to run for the US presidency in 2024, is known for walking a fine line between supporting Trump, while at the same time distancing herself enough to appeal to his critics.
She, who in 2016 was named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world, left his administration in 2018 on good terms with Trump.
This was in contrast to many other of the White House and Trump administration officials who have publicly fallen out with their former chief after parting ways with Trump.
The Politico interviewer asked Haley what she thought about Trump when he doubted election results, unveiling the corruption in the US political system. “You have the President of the United States telling everyone that he was cheated, that the voting systems are corrupt ... [and ] the Deep State has rigged this election against him.”
“He believes it,” Haley responded.
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