Haley Keeps Taking the Southern Test

From The Wall Street Journal

She was born in small-town South Carolina, attended South Carolina schools and won election three times to the state legislature.

But in her surging campaign for governor, Nikki Haley has been tested far more than other candidates on her cultural connections to the state.

“As ugly and as tough as it has been,” said Katon Dawson, former state GOP chairman, “I think South Carolina Republicans are pretty proud of what’s going on right now.”

Like her three GOP rivals for the governor’s office, Mrs. Haley sat this spring for a videotaped interview with the Palmetto Patriots, a local activist group that aims to “fight attacks against Southern Culture” and talks with candidates “to ensure compliance with conservative values.”

But Mrs. Haley was the only one to be asked the freighted question of what she thought had caused the Civil War.

Members of the group were curious about Mrs. Haley’s views because of her heritage, said Robert Slimp, a Columbia, S.C., pastor who participated in the questioning. The group did not ask her rivals about the war, he said, because “all of them are Southerners whose families go back to beyond the war between the states, back to antebellum times, and they would have a deeper appreciation of Southern thinking and mentality.”

When Mrs. Haley first ran for the legislature in 2004, one of her campaign brochures said she was “proudly raised with her Indian traditions.” Still, her campaign has been sensitive to questions of race, and has chastised reporters for using the candidate’s full name, Nimrata Nikki Randhawa Haley.

Jerry Young, a Haley supporter who leads a social-services charity in Charleston, said he believed Mrs. Haley’s personal history was an advantage for her, politically. “With people being sick of politics-as-usual, I think that opened up a door that probably wouldn’t have been there before” he said. This year, Mrs. Haley’s biography gives her “a better chance than somebody that may look like a South Carolina politician.”

Mrs. Haley is the daughter of Indian immigrants. She was born in Bamberg, S.C., population 3,400, at a time when her family members were the only Indians in town, according to Jamie Brabham, whose children played with Mrs. Haley and her siblings.

Mrs. Brabham said the whispers about race and religion were disgusting and only elevated Mrs. Haley in many voters’ minds.

“This child was born in this town,” Mrs. Brabham said. “She grew up here. . . . Come on! I thought we had climbed this mountain.”

Read the entire article here.


6 thoughts on “Haley Keeps Taking the Southern Test

  1. The “Palmetto Patriots” are a small group of activists, several of whom I know, who have proved themselves to be absolutely irrelevant and not part of the real conversation that is going on today: taking back our government and truly changing things for the better–even by what are ultimately THEIR standards: real states’ rights and effectively standing up to an abusive central government.

    They endorsed Henry McMaster in the primary and Gresham Barrett in the run-off. We can’t get there from here with an establishment good ol’ boy but they’ don’t get that.

    Part of the problem is that they were wooed and screwed by Larry Grooms and there is a lot of resentment on their part against Haley.

    The core of the problem they have with her, based on conversations I’ve had with members, is that they do not trust Nikki Haley in great part due to her Sikh upbringing despite accepting Jesus and thereby going from heathen to Christian–a much bigger step, in all probability, than any of them took in their religious lives.

    The other part of the problem seems to be based on their thinking she is not Caucasian. I’ve corrected at least one member pointing out that though she is of an ethnic minority, her race is Caucasian. The only silver lining I’ve seen in their attitude is that I’ve seen no indication that they are being sexist in their rejection of her candidacy. Maybe I just didn’t dig deep enough.

    It’s really discouraging to see the attitude from this group. I do not think most of them are bad people and surely they all do not think this way. As a group, however, they’re concentrating on everything but the issues and really have to reach in coming up with any criticism of her based on her politics. Apparently, this group is not intent on really fighting tyranny and abusive government.

    We will see tonight just how pathetically small their influence has been despite leader Bob Slimp’s bombastic pontificating. Slimp’s time has obviously come and gone. He is increasingly out of touch with the magnitude of the movement that is rising up around and beyond him. Instead of joining in with a movement our Founding Fathers would have been proud of, he has let his narrow-mindedness and prejudice shackle him to the big government good ol’ boys in the gubernatorial race.


  2. Make sure you push the facebook ‘like’ button on that wall street journal story… let’s get it boosted to the top of their “Most Popular on Facebook” section…


  3. “This child was born in this town,” Mrs. Brabham said. “She grew up here. . . . Come on! I thought we had climbed this mountain.”



  4. Naman Tradelink [www.namantradelink.com] can provide warehouse in INDIA as per requirement and design of the company, whatever may be the size. Also can provide the exclusive and independent manpower for operation of any type, effective delivery in time and organise all formalities required for any other type of requirement like salestax, drug licence, etc.


  5. I’m tired of the “good ole boy” syndrome, we need someone like Nikki that will stand up to all the “rino’s”, then we will work on removing the ones in the senate next election period.


  6. Having been raised agnostic, the converting to Christianity at age 25, I can relate to Nikki Haley’s expression of her conversion. That being said, it is no more germane to the discussion than her race or gender. Her politics is what matters, and it is clear that she will shake up the old guard in South Carolina. Diversity will attract all of God’s children to our state, not just people who look like me and Gresham Barrett.

    Then there are the ridiculous charges of adultery which are baseless accusations without merit. Leave it to the Republican party to smear the leading candidate. Right now she is polling 21+ over Sheheen, so it is obvious that the voters see right through the smoke screen being visited upon the leading candidate.

    Go vote for the best candidate with the right politics, regardless of gender, race or religion. Vote for the politics that you think will most benefit South Carolina. The choice is obvious to me. I recommend you pray before your vote. Thanks for taking time to read my post.
    Preacher David


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