- Nikki Haley wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed about China and Russia’s relationship.
- Haley made reference to Republicans who refer to the Ukraine war as a “territorial dispute.”
- Governor Ron DeSantis, a potential 2024 GOP candidate, notably used the exact phrase last week.
Former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley called out unsupportive comments on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by “some on the right,” citing language used by Gov. Ron DeSantis in a statement — but without explicitly naming the Florida governor.
Haley, a former UN ambassador now vying for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination, wrote an op-ed about the relationship between China and Russia for The Wall Street Journal. In it, she referenced a “weakness from some on the right” for not supporting continued aid to Ukraine.
“They say the US shouldn’t care about Ukraine because this war isn’t our fight. Some call it a mere ‘territorial dispute,'” Haley wrote.
The quote “territorial dispute” is a possible reference to a statement DeSantis made on March 13, when he called for an end to US aid for Ukraine. Prior to this statement, DeSantis had supported aid to Ukraine and later became defensive when a reporter asked him about his position earlier this month.
“While the US has many vital national interests — securing our borders, addressing the crisis of readiness with our military, achieving energy security and independence, and checking the economic, cultural, and military power of the Chinese Communist Party — becoming further entangled in a territorial dispute between Ukraine and Russia is not one of them,” DeSantis said in the statement to Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
DeSantis’ comments, which closely mirror those of former President Donald Trump, received a widespread rebuke from Republicans supporting the war effort, including Senators Marco Rubio, Lindsay Graham, and John Cornyn, as well as former Representative Liz Cheney.
Haley also directly commented on DeSantis’ remarks Tuesday, accusing him of “copying” Trump, and saying that while she agreed with most of Trump’s policies, she did not agree with his stance on Ukraine.
New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu also criticized DeSantis using the term “territorial dispute” to describe the war in an op-ed for the Washington Post. However, he opted to use DeSantis’ name.
Although DeSantis has not announced a run for president in 2024, speculation that he could run continues. If he does, he could face both Trump and Haley.
Representatives for Haley and DeSantis did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.