Nikki Haley Confounds CNN’s Dana Bash, Saying Trump Is ‘Fit’ to Be President — but Too Old and in Cognitive ‘Decline’ | Video

“You can’t say when you’re 80 that you’re not in decline,” the Republican presidential hopeful says of Trump

Nikki Haley on CNN Inside Politics
Nikki Haley on CNN's "Inside Politics" (Credit: CNN)

Nikki Haley appeared to confound CNN’s Dana Bash on Tuesday after asserting that Donald Trump is “fit” to be president — but actually too old and in cognitive “decline.”

“You can’t say when you’re 80 that you’re not in decline. Scientifically, you are in decline, no matter who you are,” Haley said when pressed on previously statements about the Trump’s habit of becoming confused in public. That statement came just after she said, “I think that he’s fit.”

Bash interviewed Haley on CNN’s “Inside Politics” Tuesday as primary votes and New Hampshire got underway. Haley opened up about her thoughts on how capable Trump and Biden are to serve as president again, spotlighting the two’s age. Trump is 77 and Biden is 81.

“I think that [Trump’s] fit, but what I’m saying is: Do we really want two 80-year-olds to be our options when we’re talking about the president?” Haley said. “And that’s not being disrespectful. It’s the fact that we need somebody who’s going to go eight years, ready, fully focused to do that. Neither one of them can say they can do that. One, because Trump can’t run longer than four years. But two, is that really what we want to do when we’ve got a country in disarray and a world on fire? “

She continued: “So what I’m saying is, you can’t say when you’re 80 that you’re not in decline. Scientifically, you are in decline, no matter who you are. I think he’s fit, you can see that he’s out there.”

“I mean mentally,” Bash interjected, trying to redirect Haley to comments she’s made about Trump’s mental capacities and public flubs.

“I mean, look, we’ve seen him get confused,” Haley said. “He was confused about me having something to do with keeping security away from the Capitol. Clearly, he was talking about someone else. He was confused when he said that Biden was going to run us into World War 2, clearly he meant World War 3.”

Haley then pivoted away from Trump’s mental limitations to his political ones.

“This is more about: Have you heard a vision from him on where he’s going to take us in the future? You haven’t. You’ve heard about who he’s going to go against in the past, what vendettas he’s going to take care of, but nothing about the vision for the future.”

Whether he’s fit or not, Haley has pledged to support Trump’s run for presidency if she were to step down from her campaign.

Watch the full interview with Haley — alongside New Hampshire governor and staunch ally Chris Sununu — in the video above.


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