We haven’t had a chance to read South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley’s new memoir Can’t Is Not An Option yet (not even The State received an advance copy, though national publications like Politico were releasing passages weeks ago) but we do plan on picking up a copy as soon as possible to see what Gov. Haley’s ghost writer has to say.
As part of the media tour accompanying her book, the Palmetto State’s Republican governor has been making the rounds on national news programs even more than usual. She’s even ventured out of the protective Fox News bubble to speak to “hostile” journalists such as George Stephanopoulos and the ladies of The View, and is appearing on The Colbert Report tonight.
But with Gov. Haley spending the week furthering her own interests, a busy schedule hawking autobiographies doesn’t leave the governor a whole lot of time to work for South Carolina’s interests. According to The State’s Gina Smith, Gov. Haley’s public schedule lists only one activity for this week: a Family Circle Cup celebration Saturday on Daniel Island. Perhaps the governor is counting this week as her Spring Break? Given that she’s taken nearly as many political field trips as State Superintendent Mick Zais takes vacation days, we certainly wouldn’t be surprised.
Meanwhile, the online reaction to Gov. Haley’s book and media blitz has been decidedly negative. Satirical South Carolina website The Discust lampooned the book’s title as “Dissent Is Not An Option,” while SC Forward Progress launched a fake website for her book tour called I Want To Be VP. Some of the most popular customer-suggested tags on the book’s Amazon page include “keeping America stupid,” “hypocrite,” “embarrassment,” and our personal favorite, “nuttier than a Stuckey’s Log.” Others are going after Gov. Haley’s claim on The View this morning that “women don’t care about contraception,” a statement which only furthers the growing criticism that Republicans don’t care about women.
We hope someone buys the book, because Gov. Haley has admirably stated she would donate all of its proceeds to her charity, the Original Six Foundation. That being said, she’ll be happy to send you a “free” autographed copy if you “donate” $50 to her campaign. In addition to being an admittedly slick way of getting around her charity pledge, the opportunity is a great deal for South Carolina Republican book collectors who think their governor could one day become vice president. However, the governor has maintained throughout her media blitz that she will refuse a spot on the Republican ticket if offered one (though she really wants you to ask her about it), and this morning on the View even refused to commit to seeking reelection as governor in 2014.
Part of Haley’s reasoning for quieting her Veepstakes expectations, according to University of Virginia political scientist Larry Sabato, may be due to the fact her place on the GOP ticket would be of too little value for the eventual nominee. “South Carolina is already guaranteed for Romney,” Sabato said on Monday. “Haley is not especially popular in the state, and her short stint in high office would look like Sarah Palin all over again.”
One thing’s for sure: If South Carolina’s governor reminds one of the top political scientists in the country of “Sarah Palin all over again,” it’s probably time to come home and focus on her constituents — or alternately, her impending ethics investigation.