SOUTH CAROLINA’S GOVERNOR INSISTS SHE’S STILL FOCUSED ON THE PRESENT
But to hear her tell it, she’s not focused on that.
A month ago today, the City of Charleston, S.C. was rocked by a horrific, racially motivated shooting at the historic Mother Emanuel AME Church. The “Holy City Massacre” – perpetrated by 21-year-old white supremacist Dylann Storm Roof – killed nine black churchgoers in their house of worship.
The shooting also led to a caustic debate in the S.C. General Assembly over the removal of the Confederate flag from the grounds of the S.C. State House.
The flag was taken down last week … but the effort to lower it caused a massive rift within Haley’s party.
Haley – a former flag supporter – angered many South Carolina GOP voters with her flip-flop on the flag, but there can be no denying the last four weeks has catapulted the 43-year-old back into the national limelight.
Where the reviews have been universally favorable for her …
Not only is Haley getting ridiculously good national press … she’s getting ridiculously good national (and local) press for how she’s handling the ridiculously good national press.
Take Haley’s interview last weekend on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” in which she told host Chuck Todd the extra attention on her political aspirations was “painful” for her to think about “because nine people died.”
Now The (Charleston, S.C.) Post and Courier has an expansive spread addressing Haley’s national future.
As the daughter of Indian immigrants in a Republican Party still trying to shed its image as the party of old white men, Haley has been mentioned as a possible vice presidential pick before — but that talk will now get louder and more frequent.
What does Haley think of the chatter?
“It’s not something I can think about,” she told the paper. “I know everybody else wants to talk about it, but there’s still not an hour in the day when I’m not thinking about those nine people. And so I have to get past that, and I don’t know when that’s going to be. But right now my focus is on those nine people and how to honor them and how to make sure this means something — and not just temporarily.”
Do we believe Haley? Is she really not looking national in the aftermath of this tragedy?
It’s hard to believe that, frankly.
Let’s not forget: This is a woman who sold her state down the river for a speaking slot at the 2012 “Republican” National Convention.
Here’s the question, though. Whether Haley is looking national or not … do the vetting issues which existed before her big moment magically disappear?
In other words, does one well-managed (depending on your perspective) crisis negative the pile of pernicious problems a credible national opposition researcher is likely to dig up on Haley?
Guess we’re about to find out …
For the record, we agreed with Haley on the need to take the flag down. Of course we didn’t have to wait for BMW, Boeing, Volvo and other corporations to tell us it was the right thing to do.
Still, at this point the national media seems about as likely to delve into Haley’s opportunistic flip-flop as it does to probe S.C. Rep. Jenny Horne‘s infamous “daughter of the Confederacy” claim.
Why not? It doesn’t fit the narrative …