Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and Nikki Haley criticized her fellow presidential hopeful, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, for mischaracterizing her stance toward admitting refugees from Gaza.
A potential Democratic rival to President Joe Biden is laying the groundwork for a possible announcement next week, but has not yet made his final decision.
Meanwhile, Senator Tim Scott called on Biden to denounce the “Squad” for their comments after The Hamas terrorist attack against Israel.
Here are some facts from Saturday’s election campaign.
Nikki Haley on Ron DeSantis: ‘That’s what happens when a campaign starts to degenerate’
Haley criticized DeSantis on Saturday for his description of her comments about the situation in Gaza.
“You know, the first thing I’ll say is: God bless Ron DeSantis because he continues to try to bring up this refugee situation. He has said that I want to accept refugees from Gaza. I never said that. And he has an ad on television, and I’ll tell you, from CNN to Newsmax, everyone has said his ad is a lie,” he said at a public meeting Saturday at Central College in Pella, Iowa.
He advertisementreleased Friday by DeSantis’ Never Back Down PAC, features Haley in 2017 defending sending aid to people in the West Bank and Gaza along with a 2023 clip of her saying about the prospect of the United States accepting refugees from Gaza: “That “It’s not America’s role to do that. I’ve always said it and I continue to say it.”
When asked about his mischaracterization of Haley’s comments, DeSantis again accused her on Saturday of wanting to vet refugees from the Gaza Strip, even though the former ambassador did not ask the United States to accept refugees from Gaza.
“She said that the United States has always been able to separate the terrorists from the people who really seek freedom, who want to see Hamas overthrown and live in freedom, and she said: that’s what we have to do. You have to distinguish. So why would you talk about vetting people if you didn’t want them to come in? I mean, we would have no role in vetting people if that weren’t the case. Then I think she intervened. “I think they’ve gotten some backlash for that, and I think they’re trying to cover their tracks and act like we’re doing something more than just quoting her words,” she said Saturday in Dubuque, Iowa.
ABC’s Hannah Demissie pressed DeSantis in Anderson, South Carolina, on why he mischaracterized Haley’s comments.
“She criticized what I had said, and said that the United States has always been able to separate terrorists from other people and that’s what we have to do in this case. So I don’t know why you would say that. Why would you say that? “What would you be investigating people if they’re not going to bring them in? So she’s talking about separating and investigating and that’s what they have to do,” DeSantis said.
“But she didn’t explicitly say bring the refugees from Gaza,” Demissie said.
“But I think she talked about the vetting, then people looked, got a negative response, and then changed course… We were very clear about it, and I think she expressed a lot of support for [the United Nations Relief and Works Agency] and stuff in the past, and I think people have posted it just to show that that’s reality,” DeSantis responded.
Minnesota congresswoman lays the groundwork for a possible primary challenge to Biden
All preparations are underway for a presidential announcement by Rep. Dean Phillips in the House of Representatives on Friday, Oct. 27, according to someone in New Hampshire familiar with Phillips’ plans, but Phillips has not committed to running.
Phillips, in a statement to ABC News, also confirmed his Thursday conversation with New Hampshire Democratic leadership as he “contemplates” entering the primary.
“I called [New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley] yesterday to introduce myself as I contemplate entering the Democratic primary. “It was a very friendly conversation,” Phillips said.
The deadline to apply for the New Hampshire primary is the same day, October 27.
“I reminded him that the deadline is the 27th for New Hampshire, and once you apply, you will not be able to remove your name from the ballot if you change your mind. I told him that, of course, we would be gracious hosts, as is our tradition, but both polling and grassroots interactions in NH reveal a high level of support for President Biden among likely voters,” Buckley said.
“It would be a tough challenge for Phillips or anyone. But of course, let’s go up! she added.
ABC News contacted the Concord Department of Administrative Services for permits. ABC News also reached out to Phillips’ campaign manager.
Marianne Williamson has already launched a longshot primary bet against Biden. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. also entered the race as a Democrat earlier switch to a standalone campaign.
Tim Scott attacks ‘The Squad’ for his comments on Israel
Senator Tim Scott, who called for progressive members of the House of Representatives called “the Squad” to be expelled in a opinion article published Thursday, he continued Saturday to criticize lawmakers’ anti-Israel rhetoric.
“I’ll be frank: Joe Biden does not have the ability to tell the truth on this issue, because he has ‘the Squad’ in his party, and it has to be at his beck and call,” Scott said Saturday at a restaurant. called city limits in Iowa.
“And so what we’re seeing happen today is a president who simply does not have the ability to tell the truth to the American people starting in his own party and telling, whether it be to Congresswoman [Rashida] tlaib or [Ilhan] Omar or the rest of the ‘Squad’: ‘Their propaganda machine, which is an extension of Hamas, is not welcome in the party.’ And I would love to see Democrats in Congress hold them accountable. “I don’t have the ability to hold my breath for more than a minute, so I’m not going to hold my breath at that time,” he added.
When asked if Biden’s funding proposal for Ukraine and Israel amounts to him walking and chewing gum at the same time (given that Scott frequently accuses Biden of being incapable of such multitasking), the South Carolina Republican returned to reference the lack of specific condemnation of Biden by progressives.
“Well, I would put it this way. The conclusion is simple from my perspective. “Walking and chewing gum is not just giving the presidential speech, it is also denouncing the squad that remains part of a propaganda machine that is actually endangering lives,” she stated.
Reps. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., and Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., have been among Israel’s strongest critics. Tlaib refused to apologize Wednesday for saying a day earlier that Israel is to blame for the hospital explosion that day in Gaza, despite evidence from the U.S. Department of Defense that the explosion was likely caused by an errant Palestinian Islamic Jihad projectile. .