WASHINGTON — In an interview released Thursday with The Atlantic, former Republican presidential candidate and CEO of Hewlett-Packard Carly Fiorina said she would be voting for former Vice President Joe Biden instead of President Donald Trump in November.
"I’ve been very clear that I can’t support Donald Trump. And, you know, elections are binary choices," Fiorina, who voted for Trump in 2016, told The Atlantic. When pressed whether she would vote for Biden, Fiorina replied, "I’m not voting for Trump, but it’s a binary choice. So if faced with a binary choice on a ballot: yes."
"I think this moment calls upon Joe Biden to be a leader. I am encouraged that Joe Biden is a person of humility and empathy and character. I think he’s demonstrated that through his life," she said.
Fiorina, who ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016 and, after concluding her bid, ran as Sen. Ted Cruz's prospective vice president, said she had not talked to Cruz in "several years."
Asked what she thought of Cruz's now-staunch support for Trump despite his opposition during the primary, Fiorina said, "I don’t excuse it. I don’t. It disappoints me."
She also criticized former national security adviser John Bolton, who has heavily criticized the president after leaving the White House, but said he was going to write in the name of another Republican on the ballot.
Fiorina said she did not know what to make of Bolton's comments, but said, "I think John Bolton is desperately trying to preserve some position in the Republican Party as a conservative Republican. And maybe that’s what causes him to say that."
She said she understood the struggle people like Sen. Lisa Murkowski or former Defense Secretary James Mattis faced in deciding whether to support Trump in 2020, saying "if you’re a politician, you’re focused on winning. And I think all politicians, elected politicians in the Republican Party, have struggled with the power of Trump’s base."
Fiorina was subjected to vicious name-calling by Trump during the 2016 primary, and when asked what she would do when Trump tweeted about her comments, Fiorina replied, "Honestly, let anybody tweet. I don’t spend my life trying to upset people. I spend my life trying to have a positive impact by working with other people."
Later Thursday, Trump tweeted at Fiorina, calling her a "failed presidential candidate."
Failed presidential candidate (thank you President Trump!), Carly Fiorina, said she will be voting for Corrupt Joe Biden. She lost so badly to me, twice in one campaign, that she should be voting for Joe. No complaints!!!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 25, 2020
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Carly Fiorina says she can't support Trump, will vote for Joe Biden