Ken Ard: Choose Necessary Disruption Over Controlled ‘Normalcy’

“This moment requires something unique and different … and Nikki Haley is simply not that.”

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In 1981 Phil Collins introduced America to one of the most iconic drum fills of all time. “In The Air Tonight” was and is still badass. It should come with a warning label that attempting to play air drums while listening could result in rotator cuff injury. But before Collins’s great drum work there’s a lyric that says, “Well, I was there and I saw what you did. I saw it with my own two eyes.”

That’s how I feel when I see Nikki Haley on the national stage. Nikki burst onto the national scene in 2010 when she was elected Governor of South Carolina. She received 690,525 votes in the general election defeating democrat Vincent Sheheen. In that exact same election, yours truly got 735,089 votes. Governor Haley took advantage of the opportunity and is now one of two candidates vying for the GOP nomination for POTUS in her home state. I screwed up, made a mess, owned it the best way I knew how – and remain optimistic for an appointment as Ambassador to Pawleys Island, S.C. Hope springs eternal.

“I saw it with my own two eyes” are not just lyrics in a legendary rock anthem. I saw Nikki give a years worth of campaign speeches. I saw Nikki struggle early in our primary with fundraising and lagging poll numbers. I saw Sarah Palin endorse Nikki at the crescendo of the Tea Party movement and I watched her campaign come to life and her eventually dispense of other quality candidates in winning the governorship in dramatic fashion. I saw it with my own two eyes. Up close and personal.

Nikki impressed me as disciplined and ambitious from the start. I wasn’t around long enough to give an honest evaluation on how good or bad her leadership was. But I knew her future would include assignments and interests outside the friendly confines of the Palmetto state. And here we are, the former Governor of South Carolina is the last person standing in the way of Donald Trump’s unlikely comeback.



Donald Trump is a disruptor. Nikki Haley is not. Trump will destabilize Washington D.C. Haley will not. Establishment elites are freaked out that Trump may win again. The establishment and elites are largely funding Haley’s campaign. Trump is uncontrollable. Haley will be controlled. One is the candidate of the voters, the other is the candidate of the donors. The two campaigns are literally asymmetric.

There’s great discussion about Haley being a more “normal” candidate than Trump and for America to regain its status in the world we must choose “normalcy.” I guess that depends on what your definition of “normal” is. Is it normal to be more concerned about the Ukraine-Russia border than our own southern border? Is it normal to force someone to take an experimental drug before they’re allowed to travel on an airplane or go back to work? Is it normal to increase the M2 money supply from $15 trillion to $22 trillion dollars and create crippling inflation that has made the American dream unaffordable to most working men and women? Is it normal to allow a minor child to enter into a medical contract to have their genitalia mutilated without parental consent? Is it normal to borrow and spend a trillion dollars and fund programs that benefit the very wealthy or very poor? Is it normal to allow thieves to not be charged with theft if what they’ve stolen is below a certain dollar value? Is it normal to incentivize auto manufacturers to build cars that consumers don’t want? Is it normal to state publicly that we are to “decarbonize” our economy by 2035 despite the fact that burning fossil fuels has improved the quality of life for billions of humans around the world? Is it normal to censor people’s free speech because powerful people feel entitled to control the narrative? Is it normal to weaponize our judicial system to keep a persons name off the ballot that millions and millions of Americans wish to vote for?

None of this is normal. it’s insanity – and it’s perpetuated by elites and insiders who seek more control, more influence, and ultimately more wealth and power. They’ve built a monstrosity of a machine and they view Donald Trump as someone they can’t control or trust in maintaining the status quo. They see Haley in just the opposite light.

I can’t defend everything Donald Trump says or does. But I do emphatically defend what he symbolizes: A disruption. Maybe even instability. He’s not a threat to democracy but rather an indictment of the failed globalist, interventionist elites that have promoted endless wars and dreadful trade deals. And sold the average American down the river.

Our nations greatest political theorist, Thomas Jefferson, once said, “I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical.” Jefferson believed in a government of the people, for the people, and by the people. A Constitutional Republic that empowers the American worker, the American family, and the American way of life. I was Nikki Haley’s Lt Governor for a brief period over a decade ago. I have no ill will and I wish her the best moving forward. But this moment requires something unique and different. And she’s simply not that. I’m voting for Donald Trump, and I hope you will.



Ken Ard is a native of Pamplico, S.C. The 88th lieutenant governor of the Palmetto State, he is the host of Wake Up Carolina on WFRK 95.3 in Florence, S.C. and the ‘No Stop Lights‘ podcast. His column, reprinted with permission, originally appeared here.



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Things Sane People Definitely Say February 6, 2024 at 9:03 am

Sanity is overrated, vote for the jailbird promising to blow up the country!

Tom February 6, 2024 at 11:24 am

Donald Trump is a carpet bagger con man who has never done anything for the average American and does not even care about the average American. He is what Jefferson, Madison, Adams, Franklin, and Washington feared most. A man who wants to be a king taking the Presidency. He is the very threat the electoral college was supposed to protect us from and has instead made him possible by taking away the votes of a majority of the American people, who know better than to elect a man who wants to be a dictator. Jefferson said, “Whenever the people are well informed, they can be trusted with their own government; that whenever things get so far wrong as to attract their notice, they may be relied on to set them to rights.” Like most of the other Republicans Ken Ard is a coward who has bent his knee to a tyrant and kissed Trump’s ass at high noon.

Is it normal to worry more about the actions of an evil empire bent on our destruction than an overhyped border situation that the GOP refuses to do anything about because their dictator told them it would be better for him if the border was broken? You bet it is. It is normal for common sense educated Americans. We spend hundreds of billions of dollars a year building a military designed to protect us from the Russians and the Chinese. We have alliances designed to prevent the rise of European Dictators, like Putin, who would again plunge the world into war. But Ard and his ilk, ignore that because their much-beloved dictator tells them to. A man who would support Russia and abandon our NATO alliances.

If Putin is not stopped in Ukraine he will move into Eastern Europe. That will either pull us into a world war or we will be forced to cower on our continent and wait for him to come after us next. He already has designs on Alaska. With less than 5% of our Defense Budget the Ukrainians, a democracy that loves America, could destroy the Russian Army forever. But our Republican cowards would rather play power and money games with a con man. God help us.

The party of Reagan would be so ashamed.

Ralph Hightower Top fan February 8, 2024 at 1:31 pm

Trump is a grifter. I read a news article that Trump, as a private citizen, wants us, the taxpayers, to pay for his legal bills.

JustCallMeAva Top fan February 10, 2024 at 11:30 am

And Putin wants the US to be reduced to a third-world country (or at the very least, a second-world country) and “disrupting” DC and our government’s foundation will do exactly that. And Ard and his Orange Crush are a-okay with that because neither is intellectually bright enough to understand where and how that will give our two greatest foes (Russia, China) exactly what they want-a weakened United States. Let’s be clear, if this was Germany and we were in the late 1930’s, the Trumpies wouldn’t be wearing red MAGA hats, they’d be Heil Hitlering all over the place.

smokerack February 19, 2024 at 12:01 am

In what unicerse would Putin again plunge the world into war? Gimme a fing break

Nanker Phelge February 6, 2024 at 12:06 pm

Yes Ken, vote for the guy who thinks he’s running against Obama, that WWII is imminent, confuses Haley and Pelosi, and doesn’t know if he’s in Sioux Falls or Sioux City.

Spoiler alert: Trump doesn’t care about you or the rest of the country. He’s a proven grifter only in it for himself. The sad thing is the number of suckers buying into his grift.

Ralph Hightower Top fan February 7, 2024 at 7:49 am

Trump would throw Ivanka under the bus if it would save his ass.

A Name February 6, 2024 at 1:06 pm


Trump is a crook. That’s just a fact. He’s been found by the courts to be a rapist, a massive financial fraud and an insurrectionist….so far. These are undisputed facts.

Trump also constantly praises Putin, while attacking our military, federal law enforcement and Justice system. That must be what Kenny boy means by calling his mango man-crush a “disruptor” ;-)

Ken Ard is a moron February 6, 2024 at 2:50 pm

“This moment requires something unique and different…”

So you want a guy who has already been President, already ran again and lost in a landslide? (Neither unique nor different)

Republicans sure don’t make any sense when they share their thoughts. It just “Trump, Trump, Trump. No matter what!”

So stupid.

Fixed it! February 6, 2024 at 7:20 pm

Looked up the definition of ‘Disruptor’.

Doesn’t mention being a traitor or a fraud or pathological liar or rapists or very dumb or a coward or basic criminal anywhere.

‘Piece of Shit Human’ is a better term to describe Trump, Mr Nard.

Rawlings February 10, 2024 at 7:53 am

Is it surprising that an uneducated, criminal, political insider and conman like Ard is supporting Trump? Dude has only worked for his mommy’s business and politics before found guilty on multiple fronts during his political career.

Trump is exactly everything Ard dreamed to be in SC (except Trump doesn’t cry in court). Kudos for Ard continuing to find a slimey platform to voice his nonsense instead of keeping quiet like anybody with a strong moral compass would do.

JustCallMeAva Top fan February 10, 2024 at 11:22 am

So you’re supporting the guy who has 91 felony charges against him currently? And the guy who has a long record of stiffing contractors and fraud? Wait–are you the same Ken Ard who had to resign his post at Lt Gov and who was charged in 2012 by the State Ethics Commission with 69 counts of using campaign money for personal use and 23 counts of failing to disclose campaign expenses during the 2010 election for lieutenant governor? Are you the same Ken Ard who had to pay out a $48,400 penalty and reimburse your own campaign for over $12,000? Are you the same Ken Ard who was indicted by a SC State grand jury on 7 ethics violations during your campaign including converting campaign funds for tickets to a SEC championship game, buying clothes, and a flat-screen TV and who had a bud running around dispensing $100 bills from a paper bag to guarantee their vote? I mean, I’ll give you credit for pleading guilty and resigning from your lofty office of Lt. Gov, but if the same thing happened today, as a Trump stooge and flunky, you’d remain in office. But I can see why Trump speaks to you as a candidate. Birds of a feather and all. And could it be that you still hold a bit of a grudge against the person who won as governor that year for not supporting you or standing up for your bad financial decision-making? You know, the person running against Trump currently?

Dum Spiro Spero Top fan February 12, 2024 at 3:05 pm

Judging by the comments, this is not being particularly well-received, Kenny-Boy. Might be a good idea to stick to the radio and a Pee Dee audience.


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