NEWS

Nikki Haley: Trump 'Can Say What He Wants Whenever He Wants'

"He's got a lot of things he's doing, but he is not stopping me from beating up on Russia."

02/04/2017 8:59 PM IST | Updated 02/04/2017 9:00 PM IST

American U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley argued she’s on the same page as President Donald Trump on Russia, even if their messaging seems different.

ABC’s Martha Raddatz confronted Haley about the president’s praise of Russian President Vladimir Putin, asking if Trump needs “to start talking tough.”

“Look, he’s the president. He can say what he wants whenever he wants, but the direction we’ve gotten is to do our jobs, make sure that the United States is strong and that’s what we’ll do,” Haley said.

Haley argued that she and the president are saying the same thing, “it’s just being reported differently.”

Haley has said she doesn’t trust Putin, while Trump regularly praised Russia’s leader throughout the 2016 U.S. presidential election. During a February call with Putin, Trump denounced actions taken against Russia by former President Barack Obama, according to Reuters.

“The president has not once called me and said, ‘Don’t beat up on Russia.’ Has not once called me and told me what to say,” Haley said.

“He’s got a lot of things he’s doing, but he is not stopping me from beating up on Russia,” she added.

In a separate appearance on CBS’ “Face the Nation,” Haley argued other countries look at the conversation around Russia’s potential involvement in the election as “D.C. chatter.”

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