On November 20, I was able to attend Nikki Haley’s Book tour stop in Naperville, Illinois. This tour is to promote Ambassador Haley’s new book With All Due Respect: Defending America with Grit and Grace. The moderator for the evening was Dan Proft, one of the co-hosts of AM 560’s Chicago Morning Answer. The evening was broken into four segments: Ambassador Haley’s tenure in the South Carolina State House, terms as Governor of South Carolina, her time as ambassador to the UN, and written questions from the audience.
State House Representative
Haley’s political career started by winning her primary against the longest serving representative in the state and winning three total terms in the South Carolina State House. After working her way up to some powerful committees in the State House, Haley voiced her displeasure with votes on record. Only eight percent of votes in the State House were on record while one percent in the State Senate were on record. She was subsequently removed from those committees after writing a bill that would put all votes on record and decided to make her next move up after her third term in the State House and run for Governor.
Governor of South Carolina
Although Haley talked about her economic success as governor, that section was dominated by particularly one topic. Her most well known action as Governor of South Carolina was in response to the church shooting in Charleston, when the Confederate flag was taken down in front of the State House. Haley commented that getting the House to agree to take the flag down was tough, noting during her answer about the situation that some State House members wanted a different design for the flag and even wanted the pole to remain there. She commented that leaving the pole up would eventually lead to the flag going back up.
Haley knew that state Senator Clementa Pinckney was at the Bible study taking place that night and called him to offer if he needed any help. She later commented that it haunts her to this day that she now knows State Senator Pinckney’s phone was ringing in his pocket after he was murdered in the church that night. Passing the bill to remove the flag and the pole was easy in the state senate, but after going through three different versions of the bill in the state house, the flag and the pole finally came down.
2016 Election, Donald Trump, and Ambassador To The UN
During the 2016 primaries, Haley announced her support for Senator Marco Rubio. Following her endorsement, then candidate Trump tweeted that the people of South Carolina were embarrassed by Nikki Haley, which prompted this exchange on twitter.
Haley would end up voting for Trump in the election and although she turned down being Secretary of State, she accepted the position of Ambassador to the UN. While at the UN, Ambassador Haley was a strong voice in defense of Israel, a critic of Assad in Syria for the chemical attacks, and Russia for not doing enough to condemn Assad for those attacks. One of her notable moments was holding up pictures of children who suffered because of the chemical attacks and asked, “How many more children have to die before Russia cares?” Haley recalled that was one of the “don’ts” at the UN.
Ambassador Haley commented on one of her courageous moments, which happened in the aftermath of President Trump’s press conference in Helsinki with Vladimir Putin. Following the press conference, she requested a face to face meeting to go over what President Trump said and how it was interpreted by American citizens. Following Ambassador Haley’s comments, Trump turned to Chief of Staff John Kelly and said, “You didn’t tell me that, you said I did a great job.” Trump clarified his comments the day after the press conference.
Ambassador Haley’s resignation was announced in October of that year but her resignation was much different than Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. Haley is so far the only former cabinet member to not get a negative tweet from the president since she left her position. When asked why that is, Haley said she told President Trump the truth about how she felt about certain moves and was asked how she saw those play out. She added that Trump attentively listened to her during those moments.
Ambassador Haley was not asked about 2024 plans, but ended her speaking portion with this quote, “Even on our worst day, we are blessed to live in America.” She received a standing ovation.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.