Nikki Haley is hitting back at fellow Indian-American presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy for using her birth name, which she does not go by, to counterattack her for criticism of his foreign policy platform.
The former U.N. Ambassador said she won’t engage with the ‘childish name-calling’ from her GOP rival and insisted he should ‘know better’ than to use her Indian name as an attack point.
Haley’s birth name is Nimarata Randhawa, but her legal middle name is Nikki and that is what she goes by. Her last name changed when she married her husband of 27 years, Michael Haley.
In a page on Ramaswamy’s campaign website called TRUTH. Over Myth, the campaign seeks to debunk claims made about the candidate. One section titled Vivek Doesn’t Support Israel with a clown emoji takes aim at Haley.
‘WRONG. Keep lying, Nimarata Randhawa,’ the website reads, using Haley’s birth name.
Vivdek Ramaswamy (left) used fellow Indian-American GOP contender Nikki Haley’s birth name Nimarata Randhawa when hitting back at her attacks against his Israel policies
‘The desperation is showing. By the end of Vivek’s first term, the US-Israel relationship will be deeper and stronger than ever because it won’t be a client relationship, it will be a true friendship.’
Originally, her name was misspelled as ‘Namrata,’ but it was later fixed to reflect the correct spelling.
‘I’m not going to get into the childish name-calling or whatever, making fun of my name that he’s doing,’ Haley told Fox News Digital on Monday. ‘I mean, he of all people should know better than that. But I’ve given up on him knowing better than anything at this point.’
‘I think we saw the childish, demeaning side of him onstage,’ she added in reference to Ramaswamy’s multiple back-and-forths at the first Republican debate last week. ‘I think he’s carrying that out whether it’s on the website or otherwise, but I have no use for it.’
At the debate, Haley attacked Ramaswamy for wanting to support foreign adversaries and abandon allies, specifically referencing his desire to pull aid from Ukraine and Israel.
She slammed Ramaswamy for having no experience in dealing with foreign policy, as candidates shared sentiments that this is one of current President Joe Biden’s biggest failures so far.
‘You have no foreign policy and it shows!’ Haley shouted at Ramaswamy when he indicated he would defund the Ukraine war effort. ‘You don’t do that to friends. You are choosing a murderer over a pro-American country.’
Appearing on Russell Brand’s Rumble channel, Ramaswamy said as president he would end funding to Israel in 2028, which is the year a $38 billion U.S. package expires.
‘Come 2028, that additional aid won’t be necessary in order to still have the kind of stability that we’d actually have in the Middle East by having Israel more integrated in with its partners,’ he said.
Haley’s legal middle name is Nikki and she married Michael Haley in 1996. She goes by Nikki Haley. The two Indian-American candidates got into a few heated back-and-forths at the first Republican debate in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on Wednesday
But when it came to criticism that he doesn’t support U.S. ally Israel, Ramaswamy’s campaign said it simply isn’t true after taking aim at Haley’s attacks in particular.
‘Good friends also learn from each other, and Vivek has said we have much to learn from Israel,’ the campaign clarified on his website. ‘He’s traveled there countless times with one of his most important business partners – a founding investor at Roivant – who is based there.’
‘Vivek wants the U.S. to learn from Israel’s border policies, crime enforcement policies, national identity, and missile defense capabilities – and will lead the U.S. accordingly,’ the website excerpt adds.
Ramaswamy also said that he wouldn’t end aid to Israel until the ally said it no longer needed U.S. assistance.
‘That’s what true friends do: they’re honest with each other. We expect that of our friends in Israel, And when Israel gets to that point, we should all rightly celebrate it as a mark of achievement and pride for both the U.S. and Israel.’