Nikki Haley Launches Historic Presidential Bid, A High-Profile Test of How a Woman of Color is Received by GOP Primary Voters
Nikki Haley has become the first major Republican to challenge Donald Trump in the 2024 presidential race, and her candidacy marks a historic moment for the GOP. As the first woman of color, and the fifth woman ever to run for the Republican presidential nomination, Haley will be a high-profile test of how a woman of color is received by Republican primary voters.
Haley, a former governor of South Carolina, was appointed by Trump to serve as the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. On Tuesday, she declared her intention to run for the White House in a video in which she stated that it is “time for a new generation of leadership to rediscover fiscal responsibility, secure our border and strengthen our country, our pride and our purpose.”
Haley has a history of taking on bullies and standing up to powerful people. In 2015, after a white supremacist massacred nine people at a Black church in Charleston, South Carolina, Haley called for the removal of the Confederate flag from the statehouse grounds. She has also been critical of former President Donald Trump, endorsing several of his rivals in the 2016 primaries and saying she was “not a fan” of his.
Haley's candidacy will be a high-profile test of how a woman of color is received by Republican primary voters. She has said that, despite experiencing racism herself, she does not consider the US to be institutionally racist. In her announcement video, she declared, “Nothing could be further from the truth.”
Haley has embraced her role as a trailblazer. In 2004, she began her political journey by defeating the incumbent Republican state House member in a primary, becoming the longest-serving state House member. After being elected, she challenged the House speaker and leadership. In 2010, she managed to secure backing from the Tea Party despite being a huge underdog in the race for governor. She went from the bottom of the polls to beating out a congressman, lieutenant governor, and attorney general to become the Republican nominee.
Haley has said she will not be bullied, and in her announcement video she said, “You should know this about me. I don’t put up with bullies. And when you kick back, it hurts them more if you’re wearing heels. I’m Nikki Haley, and I’m running for president.
0. “Nikki Haley to formally enter 2024 presidential race” Axios, 15 Feb. 2023, https://www.axios.com/2023/02/15/nikki-haley-2024-president-run
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6. “Nikki Haley's Announcement Video Is a Sloppy Mess” New York Magazine, 14 Feb. 2023, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2023/02/nikki-haley-needs-to-work-on-her-presidential-elevator-pitch.html
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