Haley suggested that the attacks are a sign of her opponents' dwindling chances in the race and an acknowledgment of her campaign's growing momentum.
Haley's comments were in response to a series of disparaging remarks made by former President Donald Trump, who has referred to her as a "bird brain" and accused her of being a globalist more concerned with the prosperity of other nations than the United States.
"Look, all these guys know that we're surging in the polls so they're all starting to hit," Haley said, dismissing Trump's comments. "The nickname, he's losing it, it's not even a funny nickname. I don't even think it was that great."
Haley, who served as ambassador to the United Nations during Trump's administration, also defended her record on China, arguing that she was tougher on the Asian superpower than Trump. "He just handled the trade part of China, but he didn't do anything about the Fentanyl flow, he didn't do anything about them stealing intellectual property, he didn't do anything about them buying U.S. land, he didn't do anything about defeating all of the intrusion that was happening in our universities from police stations to creating a spy center off the coast of Cuba. We're gonna have to deal with all of that because he didn't deal with any of it," she added.
In the same interview, Haley was asked about comments made by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who criticized her record as governor of South Carolina. Haley suggested that DeSantis' comments were a result of his falling poll numbers. "I think he went after my record as governor because he's losing," Haley said. "I mean, who else can spend $100 million and drop half in the polls. My record as governor is clear. I took a state that had 11% unemployment, we dropped it down to 4%. We were known as the Beast of the Southeast because we created so many jobs and brought so many companies in.... I'm proud of my record. South Carolinians should be proud of our record."
Despite the ongoing attacks from her opponents, Haley remains focused on her campaign's mission to make Americans "strong and proud." She plans to achieve this by prioritizing economic relief, enhancing education for children, reducing crime, and securing the borders. "We're gonna let the world know America is back," she said.
Haley's campaign has been gaining momentum in recent months, with strong performances in the first three GOP presidential primary debates and a series of high-profile endorsements, including one from Americans for Prosperity Action, the political wing of the influential conservative network founded by the billionaire Koch Brothers. Haley recently unveiled over 70 new endorsements from the Hawkeye State and launched a $10 million advertising campaign in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Haley has overtaken DeSantis for second place in New Hampshire and in her home state of South Carolina, which hosts the first southern contest. She has also pulled level with DeSantis in some of the latest polls in Iowa, whose caucuses kick off the GOP nominating calendar on January 15. However, both Haley and DeSantis trail significantly behind Trump, who continues to dominate the field in his third consecutive White House run.