Haley’s for Romney: So does that mean Gingrich has sewn up SC now?

I suppose you’ve seen this news:

Haley endorses Romney

By ADAM BEAM and GINA SMITH – abeam@thestate.com, gnsmith@thestate.com

Gov. Nikki Haley has endorsed Mitt Romney for president and will campaign with him in Greenville today and Myrtle Beach and Charleston tomorrow.

“He is a conservative businessman who has spent his life working in the economy, and he understands exactly how jobs are created,” Haley said in a news release from Romney’s campaign.

In a none-too-veiled slap at Romney’s chief GOP rival, former House Speaker Next Gingrich, Haley added, “He is not a creature of Washington, and he knows what it means to make decisions – real decisions – not simply cast a vote.”…

The first thought this prompts is, Does this mean Newt Gingrich is a shoo-in in South Carolina? Maybe I’d better call back the folks from the British consulate and say, Hey, I now know what’s going to happen.

Or not. This year is so unpredictable that even an endorsement by a Republican who is less popular in South Carolina than Barack Obama is not a sure thing.

Now, confession time: I feel a little bad that that was my first thought. Because it means I’m thinking like those people who used to say that “The State‘s endorsement is the kiss of death.” Of course, they were so demonstrably wrong — I ran the numbers, and over the course of the years I was on the editorial board, 75 percent of our endorsees in general elections won — but I still hate to be so dismissive.

But what am I gonna do? That was the first thing it occurred to me to say. Of course, you might say that I could wait a minute, and have other thoughts. To which I would say, Hey, this is a blog, not print.

I suppose, if I do think a bit more, I would say:

  • No news here. It’s what everyone expected. She was for him in 2008, back when she was a mere backbencher. And he endorsed her early for governor (something I still can’t get used to; outsiders interfering in our elections).
  • Romney is using the standard playbook here, getting the endorsement of the sitting governor — as though he were George H.W. Bush, and she were Carroll Campbell. Well, he isn’t. And she isn’t. And this is a year in which the playbook seems to have been torn up. But we’ll see.
  • I wonder what she would have done had Sarah Palin stayed in it?

By the way, the national media still don’t get Nikki Haley and South Carolina. They think it’s a biggie, or at least some of them do. Samuel Tenenbaum said he was taken aback when he saw this reported on MSNBC at 5 this morning. (Routine for him; Samuel is an early riser.) But probably not everyone in SC reacted the way he did. Or the way I did. It takes all kinds to make up a South Carolina.

Which is my way of saying, maybe this is a bigger deal than I think it is. But it seems unlikely.

13 thoughts on “Haley’s for Romney: So does that mean Gingrich has sewn up SC now?

  1. Kevin

    I was slightly surprised. Nikki is about Nikki – not some idealistic notion of anti-establishment grassroots conservatism that she identified herself with in 2010. But I did think that given the fact that the elements of the base that propelled her to victory in 2010 are very anti-Romney in this state, she would have at least stayed neutral like Jim DeMint – who was also a Romney supporter in 2008.

  2. `Kathryn Fenner

    Is Jeri Thompson Fred Thompson’s trophy wife, perchance? Wonder why you were more impressed….

  3. Mab

    Aren’t we done with the British consulate now that we had the Revolution?


    Is this the start of an in-your-face coup d’état akin to the one that gave us Haley, et.al. as a “government” in the first place — and a resurrection of the Confederacy? South Carolina and Georgia seem to have merged already, you know.

    If Haley, et. al. wasn’t so corrupt, I would apathetically wonder if there could BE a more irrelevant endorsement. But since Haley, et. al. IS so corrupt, there is no way to guage this as to what she/they are really up to.

  4. Ralph Hightower

    You’re right about that:
    “Well, he isn’t. And she isn’t.”

    There’s not a heck of a lot to choose from in the GOP field:

    I won’t vote for Romney: This “business man” made his money at Bain stripping companies of their assets and sending employees out of jobs.

    Newt: Won’t. Bumper Sticker Politics. Morality issues. Willing to sign pledges at the drop of a hat which shows reduced intelligence. Can’t believe that Newt signed the Fidelity Pledge.

    Perry: Male version of Sarah Palin

    Bachman: Sarah Palin again.

    Ron Paul: Family’s crazy uncle (Ross Perot)

  5. Norm Ivey

    I suspect that Haley chose Romney because she wants to be seen as backing a winner. It’s more about her than the candidate.

    (I posted this on the next entry as well. That’s what I get for working my way backwards through the blog….)

  6. tired old man

    Well Ralph, that sorta leaves Huntsman. Did you choose to ignore him or simply forget him?

    Another Mormon, perfectly manicured and dressed with artificial tan, Obama’s ambassador to China — and he says more not saying anything that the rest of the pack combined.

  7. Sally

    Nikki is all about Nikki. I suspect she would like to find a post in a national administration. And since she thinks Romney will eventually get the nomination (an assertion I don’t really dispute), she is positioning herself to get that “promotion.” I’d love for her to get out of South Carolina. At this point, she makes Ken Ard look ethical and honest. All that said, Romney will not beat Obama in ’12. And we’ll probably be stuck with that woman. Ugh. I hope we can survive. The prospects aren’t looking very good for the Savannah River, the Charleston port, or even a future Jasper port, though.
    Why, oh why didn’t people pay attention to her obvious and PAINFUL shortcomings before the election?

  8. `Kathryn Fenner

    @ Sally–Some of us did pay plenty of attention beforehand, and Brad sure did his best to enlighten the rest. Of course, there are those who would never vote for her opponent because either a.) he’s a Democrat, or b.) he’s a lawyer.

  9. Ralph Hightower

    Mitt Romney is the “Darth Vader” of Corporate America and BAIN Capital is the “Deathstar”.

    It doesn’t exactly fit on a bumper sticker. But it can be retweeted.

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