Donald Trump is no longer on an island alone for the 2024 Republican nomination. Former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, who also served as Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations, will toss her hat in the ring, which was expected in most Republican circles. Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is another possible contender, along with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. Haley will officially announce her candidacy on February 15 (via Associated Press):
Nikki Haley is moving closer to making her presidential campaign official.
On Wednesday, supporters of the former South Carolina governor will get an email invitation to a Feb. 15 launch event in Charleston, at which she plans to announce her campaign, according to a person familiar with the plans but not authorized to speak publicly about them.
News of Haley’s plans was first reported by The Post and Courier of Charleston.
Haley, 51, served as South Carolina’s governor for six years before serving as President Donald Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations. When she enters the race, Haley will be the first contender to join the contest against her former boss, who is currently the sole Republican seeking his party’s 2024 nomination.
Trump was in South Carolina Saturday for the initial campaign swing of his 2024 campaign, standing alongside Gov. Henry McMaster — who served as Haley’s lieutenant governor — and several GOP members of the state’s delegation, part of his leadership team in the early-voting state.
Haley would have been an enticing candidate a few years ago, but the base has changed. Could she be a dark horse? It all depends on the staff and surrogate infrastructure she has planned. One of the criticisms against her running is that she stepped away from the Trump administration too early, went dark, and emerged trying to play both sides of the fence post-Trump presidency, especially after January 6. There is no in-between on Trump; you’re either in or out.
One captivating quality about a hypothetical Haley presidency is that it would end the culture wars with a conservative victory. If elected, Haley would be the first American president who is not only a woman but a woman of color and Republican. Game. Set. Match.
I don’t think that’s how this will play out, especially if DeSantis enters the race, where it will become a two-way race for the nomination. For now, however, it’s no longer a Trump-centric show.