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Fiorina planning to vote for Biden

Carly Fiorina, the former 2016 Republican presidential candidate and CEO of Hewlett-Packard, said in an interview published Thursday that she intends to vote for presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden to nominate Linda Thomas-Greenfield for UN ambassador: reports Scranton dedicates 'Joe Biden Way' to honor president-elect Kasich: Republicans 'either in complete lockstep' or 'afraid' of Trump MORE this November.

Fiorina, who was also briefly Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzMcSally, staff asked to break up maskless photo op inside Capitol Capitol's COVID-19 spike could be bad Thanksgiving preview Republican senators urge Trump to label West Bank goods as 'Made in Israel' MORE’s (R-Texas) prospective running mate in 2016, said she will not vote third party and that she’s been discouraged by President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden to nominate Linda Thomas-Greenfield for UN ambassador: reports Scranton dedicates 'Joe Biden Way' to honor president-elect Kasich: Republicans 'either in complete lockstep' or 'afraid' of Trump MORE’s conduct in office.

“I’ve been very clear that I can’t support Donald Trump,” Fiorina said in an interview on The Atlantic’s “The Ticket” podcast. “And elections are binary choices.” 

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“As citizens, our vote is more than a check on a box. You know, it’s a statement about where we want to go, and I think what we need now actually is real leadership that can unify the country,” she added. “I am encouraged that Joe Biden is a person of humility and empathy and character. I think he’s demonstrated that through his life. And I think we need humility and empathy everywhere in public life right now. And I think character counts.”

While Fiorina’s endorsement of the former vice president will likely be dismissed, she has solid conservative bona fides. Fiorina ran as a Tea Party candidate for Senate in California in 2010 and voted for Trump in 2016 even after he famously mocked her 2016 campaign by remarking, “Look at that face! Would anyone vote for that? Can you imagine that, the face of our next president?” The comment was widely derided as sexist. 

Her announcement that she will vote for Biden comes at a time when the White House is taking fire on multiple fronts. The Trump administration has been panned for its handling of the coronavirus pandemic and the president’s rhetoric regarding protesters demonstrating against police brutality and systemic racism, and detractors say the White House is painting rosy pictures of a sluggish economy with a still-high unemployment rate of 13.3 percent. 

Fiorina said she was disappointed that fewer Republicans were speaking out against Trump but recognized they have to remain ingratiated with his fired-up base of voters, whom they’ll need to keep their own seats. 

“I’ve been public in my disappointment about how few politicians have been willing to stand up and speak on values and principles,” she said. “But I understand it if you’re in politics, sadly. So I — people, I think, are tired of politics and politicians and whether they’re Democrats or Republicans. If you’re in politics, as Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonBiden to name longtime aide Blinken as secretary of State: report Understanding mixed results in Pennsylvania key to future elections What's behind the divisions over Biden's secretary of Labor? MORE used to say, you’re in it to win it.”