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Mark Sanford And Nikki Haley: Not Peas And Carrots




It’s no secret former S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford is not enamored with his successor, Nikki Haley – the woman who won her “Republican” primary in 2010 on the strength of $400,000 from a political action committee run by Sanford.

In fact before Haley had even taken the oath of office in January 2011, FITS published a story detailing Sanford’s “disillusionment” with her.

“Sanford first became suspicious of Haley during the general election, when the newly-minted GOP nominee began making her first moves to the ‘center’ of the South Carolina political spectrum,” we reported back in December of 2010. “Obviously, that centrist dash only picked up speed as the general election progressed, with Haley backtracking on her support for parental choice and individual income tax relief – a pair of ideas she and Sanford had previously championed together.”

When Haley threatened to stop issuing executive budgets each year – one of Sanford’s groundbreaking reforms aimed at holding state lawmakers accountable on spending issues – the former governor joined others in publicly rebuking her.

Haley later reconsidered her decision, but the relationship with Sanford has gone downhill ever since – in part due to Haley’s many ideological betrayals, but in part due to something more elemental.

In a sprawling story on Sanford published in this week’s New York Times Magazine, chief political correspondent Jim Rutenberg delves into the fractured relationship between the two governors.

Quoting GOP powerbroker John Rainey – who literally wrote “the book” on Haley’s corruption – Rutenberg reveals that Haley never expressed appreciation to Sanford for his help, which over the span of a few weeks turned her from last-place rabble rouser into a legitimate contender with loads of momentum.

“She never thanked him,” Rainey told Rutenberg, adding “that’s something you never forget – ingratitude.”

Rutenberg’s story also provides details from a story FITS previously heard – but was unable to verify – about Haley stiffing Sanford on a request for a pair of tickets for his son to see the 2012 University of South Carolina-Georgia football game.

Haley’s office also refused to let Sanford’s son have a meal with a friend at the governor’s mansion that September weekend.

“They offered to pay for it and everything,” our source says. “Her responses was to staff out a rejection of the request.”

Ouch …

Sources tell FITS Sanford would have never asked Haley for anything for himself – but was particularly stung that she chose to make him look bad in front of his son.

FITS spoke with Sanford briefly about the New York Magazine story this week, but – as he did with Rutenberg – he declined to go into details about his relationship with Haley.

Sanford’s gubernatorial campaign account still has more than $1 million in on-hand contributions.  His Reform SC group – the one which boosted Haley’s campaign – has approximately $150,000.

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