Nikki Haley Announces Run for President
by Meir Sternhill
Building off her well-received term as the US ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley became the first Republican to challenge Donald Trump for the White House. A presidential bid has been in the works for weeks, but she made it formal on Wednesday morning to a packed crowd in South Carolina, a state she served as governor for two terms.
If elected, Haley, 51, will be the first Indian-American to lead America; her parents are immigrants from India.
“I stand before you as the daughter of immigrants, as a proud wife of a combat veteran, and as the mom of two amazing children,” Haley said. “I’ve served as governor of the great state of South Carolina and as America’s ambassador to the United Nations. And above all else, I’m a grateful American citizen who knows our best days are yet to come if we unite and fight to save our country. I have devoted my life to this fight. And I’m just getting started. For a strong America, for a proud America, I am running for president of the United States of America.”
Haley, who was envoy to the UN during President Trump’s first two years, made a name for herself as a strong ally of Israel and a sharp critic of her enemies. This time, she is calling for generational change at the top — a hint at taking on President Joe Biden, who is 80, but also a subtle allusion to Trump’s age of 76. She mentioned him when talking about her successes but did not criticize him directly.
Following Haley’s announcement on Twitter on Tuesday, Trump said in a Truth Social post that he told Haley “she should follow her heart and do what she wants to do. I wish her luck!”
Pundits had long viewed Haley as a potential GOP presidential contender but a longshot one. She intends to visit the early-voting states over the next few days.
Others who appear to be running in the Republican primary are Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina, former Vice President Mike Pence, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo; now-former Govs. Larry Hogan of Maryland and Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas; Govs. Chris Sununu of New Hampshire, Kristi Noem of South Dakota, and Glenn Youngkin of Virginia; former Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey and former Rep. Will Hurd of Texas.