Rand Paul Offers 'Anti-Endorsement' for One GOP Candidate

Kentucky senator has launched the 'Never Nikki' website to slam Haley
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 13, 2024 9:30 AM CST
Rand Paul Offers 'Anti-Endorsement' for One GOP Candidate
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., speaks during a committee hearing on Oct. 31 on Capitol Hill in Washington.   (AP Photo/Stephanie Scarbrough)

As we settle into the new year, Republicans are beginning to take sides on who they want to win the GOP primary, and who they'd be willing to cast a ballot for in November. It's not yet clear who Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul counts as his first choice, but what is clear is who he's not keen on: former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley. In fact, Paul wants to make sure others don't support her, either, which is why, just days before the Iowa caucuses kick off, he has now issued what Politico calls an "anti-endorsement" via the "Never Nikki" website.

"I have been watching the GOP primary closely for a while now, and I like various aspects of several candidates," Paul said in a statement featured on the site, even though he added, "I don't think I yet have a first choice." Paul, who endorsed Donald Trump in the last two elections, noted that he wasn't averse to stumping for Trump again, or for Ron DeSantis or Vivek Ramaswamy, per the Hill. It's a hard "no" for Haley, though, whom the libertarian senator disagrees with on foreign policy and spending, among other issues. Paul tells Politico he doesn't like her position on Ukraine (she wants the US to help Ukraine, Paul advocates for nonintervention) and notes she's tied up with fellow GOPers who might want to "bomb Tehran tomorrow."

Paul says he'd even consider pulling the lever for independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. if Haley gets nominated. The senator, who Politico notes has been reticent in recent interviews about the primary, also noted the "possibility" of campaigning against Haley in New Hampshire, or running ads against her. "I'm absolutely dead certain Nikki Haley would be wrong for our country," Paul tells Politico. "And I do have some voice. I want to make sure my voice is heard." (More Rand Paul stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.