The second Republican presidential debate took a bizarre turn when a question about support for Latinos quickly derailed into a shouting match between former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley and Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina about curtains.
The candidates’ heated exchange had to do with the $50,000 curtains in Haley’s official residence when she served as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. According to a 2018 article in The New York Times, the State Department, during the Obama administration, spent $52,701 on customized and mechanized curtains for the U.N. ambassador’s residence in Manhattan.
During the debate on Wednesday, Scott accused Haley of spending $50,000 on the curtains when she was the ambassador, which Haley quickly corrected him on.
“On the curtains, do your homework, Tim, because [Barack] Obama bought those curtains,” Haley said.
“Did you send them back?” Scott challenged, as the two of them continued to argue over each other.
“It’s the State Department’s [curtains]. Did you send them back? You’re the one that works in Congress,” Haley responded, later adding that the curtains were hung up at the ambassador residence before she arrived in 2017, during the Trump administration. “You are scraping right now.”
The bickering was among other intense back-and-forths between Scott and Haley as well as from other GOP candidates on the stage at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California.