Home Depot co-founder and billionaire Ken Langone endorsed Nikki Haley’s 2024 presidential bid Friday, arguing that the Republican Party should move on from Donald Trump.
“I think she is just what we need right now. I think her approach is smart. I think she’s clarified herself on some issues, which is very important. And more importantly, I think the American people need this kind of leadership, statesman-like, elegant,” Langone told Fox News host Neil Cavuto.
The 88-year-old financier noted that he recently met with Haley, 51, and that the former South Carolina governor was “very grateful” and “very appreciative” upon learning he would endorse her.
“She’s excited, not only just about my involvement, but the fact that she’s beginning to get significant traction,” Langone said, noting that Haley recently secured the backing of Americans for Prosperity Action, an influential political group founded by the deep-pocketed Koch brothers.
“Trust me, these guys know how to raise money – big money. Having them in our corner is no small feat,” the Home Depot co-founder said of the Koch-affiliated group’s endorsement.
Langone, a GOP mega-donor and once a prominent supporter of Trump, indicated that he has no intention of backing the former president, even if he were to secure the Republican nomination.
“Look, I think his time has come and gone,” he said.
“What Trump put this country through for the last three months of his presidency was disgraceful. I’m sorry. And I think frankly, that to me ruined his chances to succeed himself at some point,” Langone added, slamming Trump for not telling the rioters at the US Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, to “please go home.”
“He sat in a room and watched it for three hours – did nothing about it. America deserves better than that,” he argued.
When asked about choosing to endorse Haley over Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Langone cited the Sunshine State governor’s stagnant poll numbers.
“I did like Ron DeSantis. His numbers are unmoving … the handwriting is on the wall,” he said.
“Now, on the other hand, Nikki Haley has had a very substantial upswing,” Langone noted, predicting that if Haley can at least secure second-place in the Iowa caucuses it will be “pretty much the end of the rest of the candidates.”
Langone dismissed the candidacies of entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy and former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, arguing that while he supported Christie early on, “he’s not the guy” and that Ramaswamy “should have his mouth washed out with soap.”
“We need a winner. Bad. America needs a winner. What’s gone on in this country, Neil, for the last almost eight years is disgraceful. It’s pathetic,” Langone said.
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