Headlines for January 11, 2024

Former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis squared off at a CNN-hosted debate in Iowa ahead of the state’s January 15 caucus. Republican front-runner Donald Trump, who has yet to participate in a primary debate, had been invited to attend, but he opted to take part in a Fox News town hall instead. DeSantis criticized Haley for supporting sending more money and arms to Ukraine.

Gov. Ron DeSantis: “She supports this $106 billion that they’re trying to get through Congress. Where is some of that money going? They’ve done tens of billions of dollars to pay salaries for Ukrainian government bureaucrats. They’ve paid pensions for Ukrainian retirees with your tax dollars? We’ve got homeless veterans. We have all these problems. This is the U.N. way of thinking, that we’re somehow globalists and we have unlimited resources to do. You know, I think here’s the problem: You can take the ambassador out of the United Nations, but you can’t take the United Nations out of the ambassador.”

Haley questioned DeSantis about whether he was ready to run the country.

Nikki Haley: “The best way to tell about a candidate is to see how they’ve run their campaign. He has blown through $150 million — I don’t even know how you do that — through his campaign. He has nothing to show for it. He’s spent more money on private planes than he has on commercials trying to get Iowans to vote for him. If you can’t manage a campaign, how are you going to manage a country?”

Hours before the debate, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie dropped out of the race. He was caught on a hot mic saying, “She’s going to get smoked,” in an apparent reference to Haley. Christie also predicted DeSantis would drop out after Iowa.

In other Trump news, closing arguments are scheduled for today in New York in the civil fraud case brought by New York Attorney General Letitia James against Donald Trump. On Wednesday, the judge in the case struck down a request for Trump to deliver his own closing statement because the former president’s legal team refused to abide by the judge’s restrictions not to turn his remarks into a campaign speech.

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