South Carolina governor Nikki Haley talked to George Stephanopoulos of ABC’s “This Week” on Sunday, and during the conversation she made an amazing admission about why Republican party leaders don’t want to see Donald Trump as their presidential candidate.
Haley has endorsed Marco Rubio, and the discussion starts with Rubio’s recent attacks against Trump. After spouting the obligatory talking points that you expect to hear from a candidate’s surrogate, Haley goes after Trump, calling him “everything we teach our kids not to do in Kindergarten.” She then says that by responding to Trump, Rubio is doing what she claims parents tell their kids to do: “If a bully hits you, you hit back.”
Stephanopoulos offers that some people think that by responding, Rubio is “stooping to the same level” as Trump. Haley replies,
I don’t know if you stoop to the same level. What you don’t do is you walk away from it.
Haley’s attacks on Trump and defense of Rubio are pretty standard fare for someone in her position. But the really telling moment comes near the end of the segment, when Stephanopoulos asks Haley, “What will a win for Donald Trump in the nomination fight mean for your party?”
After some comments about Trump’s potential legal issues, Haley says this:
I think what he’ll do to the Republican party is really make us question who we are, and what we’re about. And that’s something we don’t want to see happen.
You would think that as we have watched the GOP slip deeper and deeper into insanity with every election cycle, going back at least to the rise of the Tea Party, some inner soul searching might be a good idea. Let’s face it; Donald Trump isn’t saying anything that other Republican candidates haven’t said or hinted about — not one thing. All he has done is turn the volume up to “threshold of pain.”
It sounds as if Nikki Haley isn’t uncomfortable with the message, she’s just uncomfortable with the messenger, and the volume with which the message is being delivered. Trump has taken the bigotry of the GOP out of the realm of code words, dog whistles and “nudge nudge wink wink say no more” and put it on full display, and that seems to be what is really upsetting the powers that be.
Here is Nikki Haley’s interview from “This Week,” via ABC:
Featured image via ABC News screen capture