CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Possible presidential candidate Carly Fiorina on Tuesday looked to dispel assumptions about her lack of foreign policy experience by laying out actions the United States should take to deal with Russian aggression, Iranian nuclear negotiations and the Islamic State group.
On Russia, her ideas include rebuilding a missile defense system in Poland, arming the Ukrainians and conducting regular military operations in the Baltic states. On the Islamic State group, she said the United States must arm the Kurds. On Iran, she said the administration must hold a stronger line.
“I’ve never negotiated a nuclear deal, but I’ve negotiated a lot of deals with a lot of people and there are some cardinal rules,” the businesswoman said while visiting the early voting state of New Hampshire. One of those rules, she said, is knowing when to walk away from the table.
Fiorina, the lone female Republican eying a presidential run, has never held elected office. But as she travels the country preparing for a possible White House bid — she put her chance of running at 98 percent — she is highlighting her experience meeting world leaders while running an international company as a means to show her ability to lead on the global stage.
As for the actions she outlined, the U.S. has had a constant presence of land and air forces in the Baltic states performing exercises and training for about a year, and Poland recently announced plans to buy U.S. air defense missiles as part of NATO’s missile defense system.
Fiorina led Hewlett-Packard for nearly six years before being forced out of the company in 2005. She has since worked for charitable organizations, advised Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential bid and unsuccessfully ran for U.S. Senate in California in 2010. Fiorina is positioning herself as a foil to Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton and attacks her more harshly than most other Republican White House hopefuls.
She often says on the campaign trail that she has met with more world leaders than any other candidate aside from Clinton, a former secretary of state.
Fiorina casts her business experience as an asset to her campaign while stressing that she understands how government and politics work.
“I’m not a neophyte,” she said. “And I’m not naive.”
AP National Security Writer Robert Burns in Washington contributed to this report.
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