Nikki Haley's clash with the White House on Russia sanctions and public rebuke of President Donald Trump's newly installed chief economic adviser has fueled rumors she is strategizing for a bigger future in politics, The Hill reports.
"Clearly she has machinations for higher office and will do anything to continue rising, even if it eventually means throwing President Trump and his administration under the bus," said one former White House official after Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, responded to Larry Kudlow's comment there might have been "some momentary confusion" on her part in announcing Russia sanctions with a biting remark.
"With all due respect, I don't get confused," Haley said in a statement.
A new report Wednesday in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution raised the possibility of Haley and Vice President Mike Pence challenging Trump in 2020.
Haley, though, is not thinking about her next move, according to a former Haley staffer who spoke with the Hill, as she is "the most loyal politician I've ever been around."
"It is unfair to say somehow she is disloyal to the president and just looking out for her political future," the person added.
Haley, according to CNN, defended herself against Kudlow because she found his remark disrespectful and felt she could not keep quiet.
She also was not "going to let the president run over her like some of these star-struck men around the White House let him do," a source told CNN.
Trump was reportedly angered by Haley's suggestions of new sanctions – she told CBS's "Face the Nation" on Sunday that Trump planned to hit Moscow with a new round for supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's chemical weapon program – but the president did not publicly criticize her like he has others in his administration.
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