Don’t do it, Nikki!


Someone just brought this to my attention:

In the latest bombshell to drop in the 2010 race for the GOP nomination for governor, Rep. Nikki Haley is running, according to multiple sources close to WR.

Haley, who would be the “Sanford candidate” that S.C. political observers have been waiting for, has allegedly been telling friends that she is running and is starting to build a campaign staff. Earlier, it was rumored that she might have been a possible candidate for state treasurer.

As of right now, it is unknown who she is going to, to run her campaign. She is also in a bit of a hole, with U.S. Rep. Gresham Barrett and Atty. Gen. Henry McMaster both sporting about $1 million in their respective war chests. As of her last disclosure report, Haley has only a little over $36,000 in the bank.

Candidates are already lining up to run for her House seat, including 2008 Senate candidate Katrina Shealy.

… and something just fell into place for me. I ran into Nikki at Starbucks a couple of weeks ago, and she introduced me to “Caroline” from her campaign. (At least, I think it was “Caroline.” Very young, even standing next to Nikki. That MIGHT be her in the background of the photo at this link.)

To which I responded, “Campaign? Already?” To which Nikki laughed a sort of “you know how it is” laugh. And I went away accepting that even for S.C. House members, the race has become this perpetual.

But maybe that wasn’t it at all, huh? Maybe Nikki was planning a big move.

I hope not. I like her as a House member, even if she does vote with the governor. I like that she actually tried to reform payday lending, for instance.

But if she ran as the “Sanford candidate,” that would just be too awful. I don’t want a nice person like Nikki to run as the “Sanford candidate.” I don’t want ANYBODY to run as the “Sanford candidate.” The very idea of there being even the slightest possibility of a continuation of these eight wasted years is appalling.

The whole point of the 2010 election is that we finally have the opportunity to get a governor who believes in governing. It’s the whole point, people. It’s why I started writing columns about the candidates as soon as they started emerging, much earlier than I normally would. We’ve got to get this one right.

Just keep repeating, folks: “We won’t get fooled again.”

6 thoughts on “Don’t do it, Nikki!

  1. doug_ross

    If she wins as a “Sanford candidate” will you finally admit that your views of what is best for South Carolina government do not reflect those of the general public?

    Or if she wins will you then expect her to “compromise” with the Harrells, Leathermans, Coopers, et al who created the mess we are in?

  2. Brad Warthen

    Actually, Doug the general public actually generally agrees with me. About 75 percent of the time, in fact. Not that I plan it that way; it just happens.

  3. Observer

    “The subcommittee’s chairwoman, Rep. Nikki Haley, R-Lexington, took $1,750 in campaign contributions from payday lenders in 2007 and has been criticized for blocking reform of the industry.”
    – Free Times, Government, 5/21/08

  4. Brad Warthen

    That’s one way to look at it — and in fact, what Nikki tried to do last year with payday lending didn’t go nearly far enough, in the view of our editorial board. And I didn’t like the excuses she offered as to why the industry needed to continue to exist.

    On the other hand… when Nikki came to see us initially about her battles with the Speaker, the saga actually started NOT with transparency in voting, but with the fact that the leadership (and the industry) didn’t like what she DID try to do on payday lending one bit. In fact, I had captured part of that tale earlier in the year on video, when she came in for her endorsement interview. If you follow the link, the relevant part of the video starts 9 minutes in. You’ll here her tell how committee chairman Harry Cato sat on her bill. Apparently, even though she was going pretty easy on the industry, they didn’t like her going as far as she did, not a bit. So I give her some points for that.

  5. Rylyn

    I hope she decides not to run. First I am not sure she could win and we need to keep that true conservative vote in the house. She has stood up to the establishment when she needed too and there just aren’t that many folks out there who will do that.

    It is going to take a “ton” of money to win this race so the next year will be focused on nothing but fund raising. As you said some of the candidates already have over $1 Million stocked away. It will take at least $5M to win the primary and then you know the Democrats are going to be working hard in SC this year to fill that seat so there is another couple million. She is young – she has time to do this later when the political climate is not so anti-Sanford and anti-Republican. You know everyone is out that looking for CHANGE…they will view Nikki as the same old same old.

    I think Nikki would make a great Governor. I just don’t think the timing is right.

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