Is Nikki Haley Positioning Herself for a Presidential Run?
In February, Haley unveiled her launch of Stand For America, a non-profit that she intends to use to put herself in the national spotlight.
Arguably, the most high-profile U.N. ambassador in recent memory, Haley has taken calculated moves over the last few years in her efforts to pursue the American presidency in 2024.
Reports indicate that Haley won’t challenge Trump in the 2020 primary. Instead, she’s playing the long game by forming a non-profit to build her profile, while she accumulates funds for her future run. The American presidency is a position that is not reached overnight, thus it requires long-term planning to pull off.
A Haley spokeswoman Chaney Denton claims that Haley “has always loved policy” and started Stand for America to “make sure she always has a voice” on domestic and foreign policy issues.
However, a GOP operative in South Carolina, Terry Sullivan, sees a bigger play in the making. He believes that this organization effectively serves as a stalking horse for Haley 2024. “Absolutely, 100 percent, no doubt about it,” Sullivan stated when asked about Haley’s organization and its purpose.
Haley made waves in the wake of the Charleston Church shooting, where a madman killed nine people. In response, Haley removed the Confederate flag from the state house due to the shooter’s white supremacist background.
The former South Carolina Governor continued to rise up the ranks when she was nominated as the U.N ambassador. She received bipartisan praise—a sign that she is palatable to the establishment—for her foreign policy prowess. Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey commented, “I think she did a great job. She had a fantastic moral compass, which I think was a star within the administration’s foreign policy universe.”
Dan Eberhart, a Trump-supporting Republican donor from Arizona, recognizes the threat she poses to Trump. “A challenge from Nikki Haley would be something that President Trump and his campaign would have to take seriously,” Eberhart stated. He added, “She has never been part of the ever-dwindling ‘Never Trump’ club and remains very popular with Republicans.”
Haley has made campaigning against socialism, a hallmark of her political brand. Although she has not been specific in her ways to dismantle the current the managerial state, her cries against socialism resonate well with a good portion of the electorate.
Haley was never a diehard Trump supporter. During the 2016 GOP primaries, she initially backed Florida Senator Marco Rubio. Even in her time working for the Trump administration, she stuck to neoconservative talking points and maintained independence from Trump. When Trump tried to mend relations with Russia, Haley had choice words for the superpower.
She even stated in 2018 that the U.S. government had new plans for sanctions on Russia. She was quickly contradicted by a White House official who stated that she experienced “momentary confusion” and that President Trump had not come to a final decision on that matter.
Haley was quick to rebuke this statement, stating “With all due respect, I don’t get confused.”
The former South Carolina Governor markets herself as anti-establishment, yet her recent actions point to pro-establishment behavior.
For example, she recently joined the board of Boeing, one of the flagship companies in the American military-industrial complex. Should she assume the presidency, it’s very likely that her foreign policy will be designed to placate the company.
However, BLP reported that the company is fending off lawsuits in the aftermath of a Boeing 737 MAX airliner crash in Ethiopia which killed all 157 passengers and crew in March. So her recent move with Boeing may come with a few inconveniences
Nevertheless, Haley appears to be positioned very well for 2024 and beyond given her rising popularity and the moves she has made in the background recently.