Nikki Haley: A Candidate Worth Watching for 2016

Updated on November 14, 2014

When it comes to the 2016 presidential election, the media loves to obsess over four potential Republican candidates: Marco Rubio (FL), Ted Cruz (TX), Rand Paul (KY), and Chris Christie (NJ). However, there might be a few surprises.

So who would make a really good Republican nominee against Hilary Clinton? Ideally, conservatives need a candidate with 3 attributes: charisma, accomplishments, and an inspiring life story. One elected official that stands out is South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.

She was born and raised in South Carolina, but her parents were born in Punjab, India. She earned an accounting degree from Clemson University and worked for her family’s small upscale clothing business. In 2004, she challenged South Carolina’s longest serving state legislator, Larry Coon, and defeated him in the Republican primary.

In some ways, this makes her one of the earliest Tea Party candidates. She became the first Indian-American to serve in the South Carolina House of Representatives. After just three terms, she decided to run for governor to succeed Mark Sanford.

In a four-candidate primary, she defeated three candidates more experienced than her: Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer, former Attorney General Henry McMaster, and Congressman Gresham Barrett. In the runoff primary election, she completely trounced Barrett, 65%-35%.

As governor, she inherited a huge mess as the Palmetto State was hit very hard by the Great Recession. The unemployment rate peaked at an all-time high of 11.9% just a month before she took office. In January 2011, she inherited a 10.5% jobless rate, well above the national average. Governor Haley worked very hard to bring jobs to the state and cut taxes to help persuade companies to invest in the Palmetto State.

In 2011, she convinced Boeing to build an aerospace manufacturing factory for the 787 Dreamliner in her state, which Obama unsuccessfully tried to block because it was not unionized.

n 2012, South Carolina became the “Tire Production Capital of the United States” when three companies decided to build factories in the state: Michelin, Bridgestone, and Continental.

In 2013, Governor Haley successfully lobbied two gun manufacturers, Connecticut’s PTR and New York’s ATI, to relocate to South Carolina after the two blue states passed gun control legislation.

 In March 2014, German-based auto company BMW announced that they would invest an additional $1 billion into their Spartanburg production plant. They plan to increase the plant’s workforce by 10 percent and capacity by 50 percent, making it BMW’s largest factory in the world!

South Carolina has recovered from the recession arguably better than any other state in the country. Today, its unemployment rate is 5.3%, the lowest in 13 years! Not only is the Palmetto State’s jobless rate well below the national average, but is now one of just five states that have a jobless rate lower than pre-recessionary levels.

Kiplinger found that South Carolina had the fourth highest job growth rate in 2013! Considering the fact that Hillary Clinton cannot name a single accomplishment as U.S. Secretary of State or U.S. Senator, Governor Haley would make an excellent contrast.

Views expressed are not put forth or endorsed by Red Millennial.


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