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haley endorsement

By FITSNews || So let’s get this straight … we know for a fact that S.C. Rep. Nikki Haley is lying through her teeth every time she denies our founding editor’s claim that she had an “inappropriate physical relationship” with him in the Spring of 2007.  On top of that, we also know for a fact that her political career could very well go down in flames if (and more likely “when”) this ticking time bomb goes off …

And yet we’re endorsing her for the 2010 S.C. Republican gubernatorial nomination anyway?

Correct.

Wait a minute … have we lost our minds?  Seriously … HAVE WE LOST OUR FRIGGIN’ MINDS?

Indubitably so, but the fact remains that this election (at least to us) isn’t about whether Haley is telling the truth regarding Sic Willie’s claim – or a subsequent claim made by lobbyist Larry Marchant – it’s about the hundreds of millions of dollars that will likely be saved as a result of her winning the general election in November.

“It’s all about the Benjamins,” in other words.

And the bottom line for S.C. taxpayers is that Haley would vote the right way on the S.C. Budget and Control Board, use her veto pen to reduce the size and scope of government and sign a universal parental choice bill which would (at long last) provide parents with real options and our flawed system with real, market-based accountability.  Also, all signs are that Haley would aggressively pursue government restructuring – although it’s probably fair to say that her credibility when it comes to government transparency (her signature issue up to this point) has been pretty much shot.

Oh well … there are plenty of us who can continue leading the way on that fight.

Will Haley cut taxes, too?  She hasn’t been as specific on that issue as we’d like related to individual income tax brackets, but neither has U.S. Rep. Gresham Barrett – and as far as we can tell his so-called jobs plan would move our state in precisely the opposite direction it should be going.

Given all of this …  in spite of our intimate knowledge of her lack of forthrightness – and in spite of the merciless smear campaign her supporters have waged against us over the past month – we are endorsing Nikki Haley in next Tuesday’s Republican gubernatorial primary against Barrett.

Sure, a candidate lying about their personal life is a damn good reason not to vote for them – and to anyone who asks whether or not  Haley can be trusted to keep her word, the obvious answer is “no.”  She can’t.

Of course our favorite modern-day president – Bill Clinton – clearly lied about the fact that he had sexual relations outside the bounds of his marriage.  But Clinton also cut our capital gains taxes, pushed for free trade and worked with Republicans to pass welfare reform (which President Barack Obama unfortunately overturned last February).

In light of all that, should it matter that he lied about Monica Lewinsky?

There’s also a “people in glass houses” argument that can be made with respect to this campaign.  Specifically, Barrett – who has trumpeted both his Christianity and fidelity on the campaign trail – is widely-rumored to have had an affair with a former staffer.  We also know for a fact that Barrett is lying through his teeth when he says that his campaign had “nothing to do” with the pressure that was placed on our founding editor to come forward last month with his acknowledgment.

The truth is that Barrett’s people were indeed pushing a story, local media were indeed chasing it down and our founding editor felt he had no choice but to preemptively address the situation.

Obviously, Haley’s response to all of this disgusts us.  After she was given the widest possible avenue to address the situation honestly, she choose instead to lie, deny, evade, stonewall, smear and keep public information hidden from the public view.  And her response has “worked” – although we would remind her as a “converted Christian” to go back and read Matthew 16:26.  We would also encourage her to go back and listen to this song.

Yeah …

We also feel badly for her husband, Michael, who no doubt views the “circumstantial” evidence that’s been released to date a bit differently than the general public does.

Of course as upsetting as Haley’s reaction to all of this has been, it’s not like her election would mark a significant decline in gubernatorial integrity.  After all, we’ve had a liar in the governor’s office for the last eight years – and as far as we can tell that hasn’t stopped him (in most cases) from fulfilling his fiduciary responsibility to the taxpayers.

Now Sanford should have stepped down, in our opinion, and his failure to do so irreparably fractured the state’s reform movement, but the fact remains that he and Haley have been better stewards of our tax dollars than Gresham Barrett and Vincent Sheheen.

And that’s what it boils down to for us – the dollars.  Given South Carolina’s historic lack of economic competitiveness, this state simply cannot afford eight year of Gresham Barrett or four years of Vincent Sheheen.

That’s why in the most conflicted sense imaginable we endorse Haley – although as we’ve said in the past, buyer beware.

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