Nikki Haley takes shot at Ron DeSantis’s Florida parental rights law

Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley sought to stake out ground in the coming battle for the party’s 2024 nomination, telling a New Hampshire crowd that Florida’s so-called “don’t say gay” bill protecting parental rights in education doesn’t go far enough.

The former South Carolina governor and U.S. ambassador to the United Nations spoke at a town hall event in Exeter on Thursday, days after she formally announced her White House bid, the second Republican to do so after former President Donald J. Trump declared his candidacy last year.

“There was all this talk about the Florida bill — the ‘don’t say gay bill.’ Basically what it said was you shouldn’t be able to talk about gender before third grade. I’m sorry. I don’t think that goes far enough,” Haley said to applause from those in attendance for her speech at the town’s historic town hall, one of three across the country that have claimed to be the Republican party’s birthplace.

“When I was in school you didn’t have sex ed until 7th grade. And even then, your parents had to sign whether you could take the class,” she added. “That’s a decision for parents to make.”

Haley’s remarks seem to be an attempt to draw a distinction between herself and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis whose devotion to protecting children from perverts and groomers and their promotion of graphic sexual content in classrooms has infuriated the left which, until recently, had met with little resistance in their sinister agenda to indoctrinate impressionable young minds into the transgender lifestyle.

In an exclusive interview with Fox News Digital after the New Hampshire town hall, Haley was asked about DeSantis and whether the national praise that he has received for the parental rights bill and his full frontal assault on the “woke” left’s cultural revolution was warranted.

(Video: Fox News Digital)

“I think Ron’s been a good governor. I just think that third grade’s too young. We should not be talking to kids in elementary school about gender, period,” Haley said of the Florida law which prohibits the teaching of gender identity from kindergarten through third grade.

“And if you are going to talk to kids about it, you need to get the parents’ permission to do that. That is something between a parent and a child. That is not something that schools need to be teaching,” Haley added. “Schools need to be teaching reading and math and science. They don’t need to be teaching whether they think you’re a boy or a girl.”

DeSantis, a rising GOP rock star who demolished his hapless Democratic Party opponent Charlie Crist in last November’s Sunshine State gubernatorial election, has not yet thrown his hat into the ring for 2024.

The former Palmetto State governor was asked about the recent decision by the Democratic Party to bump South Carolina to the front of the line in next year’s primaries, a move that would allow President Joe Biden to capitalize on the race-baiting that has been his bread and butter as a springboard for a second term by appealing to the state’s black voters.

“I think South Carolina is great. And you see South Carolina is number three for the Republicans,” she said. “I just think I can see through what Joe Biden did. It was wrong. He should have dealt with New Hampshire just like every other candidate has had to deal with New Hampshire. You don’t go pull strings because you know you can’t win in a state.”

Haley also said that if the Republican Party is going to start winning again, it needs to “focus on new generational leadership.”

“And the best way to do that,” she said, “is to put a badass woman in the White House.”

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