April 5th, 2012
04:34 PM ET
10 years ago

Haley on Romney's 'golden bullet'

Washington (CNN) – South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley said Thursday the leading Republican presidential candidate was carrying a "golden bullet" to connect with women voters.

Speaking on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer," the Palmetto State Republican said Mitt Romney's wife Ann, along with the candidate himself, would need to answer women with concerns about his platform. Polls released in the past week show Romney trailing President Barack Obama by a large margin among female voters.

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"If Gov. Romney has not related to women, he needs to get out there and talk about the issues they care about," Haley said. "They care about jobs and the economy, and raising their families and all of those things. But they are obviously not relating to him as much as we want them to. That means he has to work harder, he needs to continue to do that, and he needs to bring that one golden bullet he's got, which is Ann Romney."

Haley said Ann Romney's history with battling illness helps her connect with voters.

"When they see how strong she is, the fact that she is an M.S. survivor, a cancer survivor, a great mom, a great wife, strong supporter, and hear her talk about him, I think he'll do a lot better," Haley said.

His wife aside, Mitt Romney will need to answer pressing questions from women on issues ranging from contraception to the economy.

"I think they need the ability to ask him those questions, and I think he needs to look them in the eye and give them the answers," Haley said. "Because that's what this is about. You don't go talk to people who you already have support. You talk to the people that still have questions. If women are questioning him, they have to ask him those questions."

In the CNN interview, Haley reiterated she wouldn't accept a spot on a GOP presidential ticket or as a cabinet official, a position she has staked out repeatedly in interviews this week. Haley said Thursday she wanted to "finish what she started" by serving her term as South Carolina governor.

Haley also detailed experiences, spelled out in her book "Can't Is Not an Option," about her childhood in a small South Carolina town.

"My father had a turban, my mother wore a sari. I was born in that town, and we lived in this small southern town, where they didn't understand us, and we didn't know how to fit in with them," Haley said, laying out how she was disqualified from a beauty pageant because judges didn't know whether to place her in the category for black girls or white girls.

Despite the challenges, Haley said in 2012 her small town in South Carolina had come a long way since her upbringing in the nineteen-seventies.

"What I hope people understand is that town took us in, allowed me to be part of girl scouts, supported my brother when he was deployed to Desert Storm. And that same town now has a sign that says 'Proud home of Nikki Haley,'" the governor said.

Also see:

Santorum enjoys three strikes

Romney makes general election pitch in Pennsylvania, but can't ignore Santorum

Santorum: Romney attacks to fall short in Pennsylvania

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Filed under: Nikki Haley • TV-The Situation Room
soundoff (144 Responses)
  1. no way

    She is the worst governor ever, if Romney picks her I will vote for Obama

    April 5, 2012 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  2. jimbo

    Re: "Haley needs to spend more time in SC improving some of the state's third world conditions. SC, no health care, no indoor plumbing, no electricity in homes, dropouts, poverty, high unemployment when the economy is good."

    The third world conditions of parts of SC pales in comparison to the slum tenement public housing in DC, NY, LA and Chicago with horrible sanitary conditions, rat infestation, and a crime rate off the charts. This is spite of large sums of tax money being poured into these neighborhoods. Race relations? In SC, according to Hailey, things have improved drastically. In DC, Councilman Marion Barry is fretting about those horrible dirty Asians coming in.

    April 5, 2012 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  3. Sniffit2

    "What a laughable puddle of conservative talking point sputum. T...blah, blah,blah..."

    It was a move by the Dems to get the focus off the 15 Trillion Dollar deficit, record unemployment (36 month >8 with the fudged "not counting people who stopped looking" numbers) and >$4/gal gas. Doesn't anyone seem to care that we are already borrowing hundreds of billions from China to pay for all the free stuff we can't already afford, and the Dems want more? We are only paying the interest on our debt at this point, and let's borrow more! What about our children and their children being saddled with this debt?
    It's ridiculous to say Reps want to take away birth control. That's like saying all Dems are for abortion. Neither is true. Broad strokes make you look ignorant. I'm so tired of talking points from both sides, spun in the extreme and spewed with vitriol. The country in in unsustainable debt. Instead of fixing the economy first, we're rushing to work on green initiatives that are going bankrupt after getting hundreds of billion. Green is great, AFTER the economy gets fixed.
    Seems like common sense to me...but our current administration seems to not realize we cannot continue to spend what we do not have.

    April 5, 2012 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  4. pompey

    ....."myviewis" is a lunatic and has never been to SC.......and that is not only my view but a fact...!

    April 5, 2012 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  5. Mikeinsjc

    Repeal the 19th.

    April 5, 2012 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  6. Tjexcite

    If she did run for VP they left would destroy her like the did the governor of Alaska and not care that she felt the same racism as most blacks. None of her life story would matter just her conservationism and R label.

    April 5, 2012 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  7. TorchOnHigh

    Here go the libtards again! Show us who you fear! Reinforce the fact that it is YOU the libtarded democRAT party that is at WAR WITH WOMEN!!!!! We all have seen your true colors, you fool nobody!

    April 5, 2012 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  8. TorchOnHigh

    Cali Girl, our state is broke and has been run into the gutter by the democRATS, just move to Mexico where you can be happy! You libtards will kill a baby with a smile on your face and at the same time protest an execution of a murdering rapist! Don't worry though, all it takes is a liberal to get mugged one time then they become conservatives!

    April 5, 2012 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  9. Natalie

    If any woman would vote for this pandering liar, they'd deserve exactly what they'd get. He will just shake that Etch-a-Sketch and rewrite whatever he stands for if it means one more vote. Romney is a professional politician with little to no regard for the middle class. Wearing jeans to events doesn't make him any less robotic. No thanks! And, Haley? She does not represent most women in this country who care about our freedom to choose without interference by government. Why, after 50 yrs., is the GOP stuck on past history?

    April 5, 2012 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  10. james r.

    This is a bogus story. She has repeatedly said, there is "zero chance" that she would accept. The reporter saved this most important fact for the very end of the story, rendering the story useless and sensational.

    April 5, 2012 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  11. John in Brooklyn

    Why in the world would a first lady candidate need to be a presidential candidate's way of connecting with and being relevant to female voters. How condescending!

    April 5, 2012 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  12. Sr. DanO

    Sarah Palin II Romney/Ryan !

    April 5, 2012 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  13. rescuekyron

    Haley promised on nat'l tv that she would not accept, if offered, the vp spot with Willard. Said she has work to do in SC and made promises she will keep. We'll see. Not to worry, Willard Won't Win. He has been running for many years to try to get into the oval office. Ask him how he is going to celebrate the risen Lord Jesus Christ on Easter. That should force some answer but he would sidestep for sure. We already know what the Big O will do, so do you want another one like him in the Oval Office? I think not.

    April 5, 2012 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  14. No Romney

    Haley lost all credibility as a true conservative the day she endorsed Romney. She's a lost cause.

    April 5, 2012 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  15. thsldu

    Courting women is NOT forcing them and their families to renounce their faith with pro-abortion rhetoric and policies!

    April 5, 2012 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  16. Uaintdown

    Love Haley! Would be amazing VP!

    April 5, 2012 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  17. Frank Ren

    Ahh the DNC goonies are rambling today! Romney did not have an issue with women until Tricky Ricky just couldn't keep his mouth shut – that forced Romney to also comment – didn'trealize that teh dems would have such a good secret weapon Trickey aka Ricky teh Rooster.
    Ploitics would be some much easier if we just reviewed the facts – Santorum ws never the ultimate conservative, he has a terrible voting record BUT he is radically socially conservative – very far right just as Obama is far left. Can anyone honestly say that their life is better today than it was three years ago? High gas prices, record defecits, restrictive regulations for small business – are you making more money, do you have more buying power?
    Is teh US in a stronger position in teh worls are we respected – Iran, Syria, China, Rusiia and Korea laugh at us – we have lost respect in the world.
    Romney may not be the ultimate conservative – I do not care – he has good business skills vs Obama who has none – he will fix teh economy, reduce teh debt – after that we can move on again but not before.

    April 5, 2012 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  18. Discovega

    Don't lose focus people, the BHO reelection campaign is doing all they can to set the agenda of the 2012 election. This week it's the women vote, last week it was contraceptive, next week it's the Supreme Court...don't be fooled by this idiot and his aligned media...stay focus on the real issues of the economy and that of kicking BHO out of office and taking America back from a socialist/communist who's full intent is to weaken our country and destroy capitalism. - Don't fall into his trap...stay focused. Remember, ABO 2012!

    April 5, 2012 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  19. Discovega

    Can't wait until Nov. 7, 2012 when the nightmare we have been living will be kicked out, stripped of power and American can get back to work. Praise the Lord that day!

    April 5, 2012 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  20. ED FL

    I thought whoever ran and got elected was supposed to be the President,Not the wife and by GOP standards she may not have followed the rules and if she ever used contraceptives she would be banned from the White house.

    April 5, 2012 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  21. Larry L

    Romney comes from a heratige of appreciation of women. Even today some of them have many wives – all women! To my knowledge none of them are required to ride on the roof of the car during long trips.

    April 5, 2012 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  22. AtlasObjectivist

    Romney/ Haley 2012... wow, you better believe Obama would just wet himself.

    April 5, 2012 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  23. stingray1

    If Romney doesn't pick Rubio as his running mate, he's crazy...That ticket would be a lock! Rubio would bring a chunk of Latino vote, the swing state of Florida, the Tea Party, he's of greater intelligence and is far superior in speaking (off teleprompter) and debating than either Obama or Biden. Romney can't pass up this obvious opportunity to win by a landslide!

    April 5, 2012 08:37 pm at 8:37 pm |
  24. enuff

    First his wife wants to "unzip" the real Romney then another woman comments on his "gold bullet". DOES ANYBODY see sensationalzing going on?

    April 5, 2012 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  25. Anonymous

    Anyone, anyone is better than Obama, whose one single goal is to take this country down the road to totalitarian socialism. Doesn't anyone see this?

    April 5, 2012 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
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