Haley Ditches Her Own State

Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

(RestoreAmericanGlory.com) – Nikki Haley, a candidate in the Republican presidential race, is facing challenges in her home state of South Carolina, which extend beyond her competition with former President Donald Trump for the GOP nomination. The issue seems to stem more from a disconnect with the conservative base in the state than from Trump’s influence.

According to conversations with over a dozen Republican operatives in South Carolina, as reported by Politico, Haley has largely neglected grassroots activists since her tenure as governor. This detachment was highlighted when a junior staffer from Haley’s campaign reached out to the South Carolina GOP in December, inquiring about local party events. This late and somewhat basic query, particularly from the campaign of a former two-term governor, raised concerns among state party officials.

Haley’s difficulties in South Carolina are attributed to her failure to maintain and build relationships with party loyalists. Allen Olson, ex-leader of the Columbia Tea Party, expressed to Politico a sentiment of abandonment by Haley, rather than the other way around.

Despite her current campaigning efforts in South Carolina for the upcoming primary, Haley seems to be an outsider to voters who have developed a strong allegiance to Trump during her absence. Politico reports that Haley, once a favorite among state conservatives, shifted her focus over the past decade from local and state events to national speaking engagements, book tours, and television appearances.

While Haley actively campaigned for Republican candidates nationwide and contemplated a presidential run, her engagement with state party activists was minimal until her late entry into the presidential race.

Haley’s past, marked by her rise as a tea party star and her victory in a competitive South Carolina GOP primary in 2010, showcased her ability to harness anti-establishment fervor. As governor, she was recognized as one of the nation’s most conservative state leaders, known for tax cuts, spending vetoes, opposition to policies of then-President Barack Obama, and enacting strict illegal immigration legislation.

However, her return to South Carolina’s political scene 14 years later has proven challenging. Recent polls indicate Trump leads Haley by a significant margin, forcing her to seek support from a diverse group comprising independents, Democrats, and moderate Republicans—a stark contrast to the coalition that once secured her governorship.

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