Will Folks, a Republican blogger, and Larry Marchant, a former paid consultant for current South Carolina Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer, have both claimed to have had “inappropriate physical relationships” with State Representative Nikki Haley, current front runner in the SC GOP gubernatorial primary.
She’s running against Bauer, who tried to make political hay out of current governor Mark Sanford’s adultery last year, but has lost huge support since his comments this past winter comparing people on school lunch programs and unemployment to “stray dogs.”
In radio interview, Haley denied the allegations wholeheartedly. As Columbia CBS station WLTX 19 puts it,
Haley once again defended herself against a claim that she had a sexual encounter with consultant Larry Marchant Thursday afternoon on “The Afternoon Drive with Keven Cohen/560 WVOC Radio.”
On a side note, I’d like to point out the dangling preposition in the above sentence, which indicates that the alleged affair took place on the radio show, not the interview.
Anyway, when asked if she would resign if evidence were presented that proved the allegations, Haley replied,
This is very disheartening in and of itself, because in political liespeak, this basically means, “Yes, I did it, and if it’s proven, I’ll admit it.”
After all, if the allegations were completely *untrue*, wouldn’t she have said, “Since the allegations are untrue, no evidence can be presented to prove them”?
Or, maybe, “I admit we were alone for such-and-such a time, and apologize for the impropriety, but nothing happened”?
Nevertheless, the fact that both accusers have close financial ties to the Bauer campaign creates a great deal of doubt.
While many outlets yesterday reported the possession of “texts” by Folks that allegedly document the alleged affair, the texts in question–if they are real–only document a *discussion* of the allegation among various campaign workers.
However, given the fact that our current governor, who built his name on his “Christian values” then turned out to be a total sleaze, has put this state, and the Republican Party, through enough already, and given the fact that SC’s traditional GOP leaning is tenuous at this point, don’t we need a little more certainty?
Yet again, if the allegations *are* false, that would be precisely the motive for making them up.
Folks’ “evidence” consists of phone records documenting numerous phone calls, most of them late at night, sometimes several hours long. The phone calls date to a time when Folks *worked* for Haley.
At least Marchand has the evidence that he and Haley were *away* attending the same out of state convention.
I mean, as Ben Matlock would say, “COME AWN!”
PHONE CALLS? I’m sure someone can dig up hundreds of hours worth of phone calls between Karl Rove and George W. Bush. . . .
I first learned of Haley’s campaign through Facebook, and I’ve been following her Facebook pages for a year now. Haley’s definitely adept at New Media, and one of the things I’ve picked up on from her FB statuses is that, unlike most politicians, she makes time for her family.
If a former advisor wants to make the claim they were carrying on an extensive affair, shouldn’t he be proving they *didn’t* talk on the phone?
On the one hand, we who Haley claims to be: a busy politician and mom, involved in her kids’ life as much as her political work, staying up late and talking on the phone to a campaign aide about campaign matters when she can squeeze the time in.
On the other hand, the claim that she was doing all those things *and* callling this guy late at night for hours *and* sneaking off to have sex with him??? Huh?
Evidence of an affair would be hotel and restaurant receipts, showing they were actually in the same places at the same times.
Sarah Palin has reaffirmed her endorsement of Haley, comparing the accusations to the numerous trumped up ethics charges that drove her out of office in Alaska.
Meanwhile, ex-First Lady and Adultery Victim Jenny Sanford has come out in Haley’s defense, saying that “our state is better than this” (I don’t know about that one).
Sanford, whose endorsement given her own background ought to mean something, was referring both to the sexual allegations and to racist concerns about Haley’s Indian ethnic background.
Haley is presently a state representative representing Lexington County, and the senator from that county, Jake Knotts, recently referred to her as a “raghead” in an interview, applying the racial epithet (which is wrong on numerous levels) to both Haley and Barack Obama.
Meanwhile, CBN’s David Brody has compared Haley to Obama in a more honest way; apparently, Haley has been ambiguous about her exact religious leanings in the past.
In April, the statement “Are you a Christian” on her campaign’s FAQ page was a vague reference to Almighty God; at present, it says “Christ.” In 2004, when she ran for state senate, she claimed to be practicing both as a Methodist and Sikh, attending both services weekly. Newspapers in the US and India praised her as the first Sikh to be elected to US political office.
I don’t know a lot about Sikhism, but from skimming the Wikipedia entry, I’ve deduced how it’s the kind of religion that can be easily meshed with liberal Christian theology, and Christian denominations don’t come more liberal than the Methodists (let’s remember–Hilllary Clinton’s a Methodist). As I’ve heard it said by former Methodist’s on The Journey Home, one needn’t “believe” anything in particular to be a Methodist–there’s no required credo–just a required hymnal.
Now, it’s possible Haley has sincerely adopted a more sincere Evangelical Christianity over the years, and dropped away from regular Sikh observance. It’s also possible her Christianity is in the mode of George W. Bush or, worse, Mark Sanford.
At least she’s able to make a firm statement of belief in Christ–that’s more than Barack Obama can do. He can only mmuster that Jesus is one of many “great teachers,” or that “I believe in the Sermon on the Mount” (even though he apparently ignores the parts about adultery, lust, divorce, greed, serving two msaters, etc.).
As I’ve said many times, I care less about what a candidate’s religious beliefs are than I do about whether he or she is sincere in those beliefs. I care more about whether the candidate is honest, and whether the candidate believes in Natural Law.
Spiritually, I can understand that we are all fallen, and, as a Catholic, I know how hard it is to live in a state of grace *with* the sacraments. I am honestly surprised people without the sacraments don’t commit adultery all the time. One also has to consider that, to Evangelicals, as has been stated by some of them on this blog, Christ’s forgiveness often means the ability to just go on sinning that grace may abound.
However, anyone who campaigns as a “values” candidate needs to be extra careful.
Sadly, in this midst of all this, Mike Huckabee has reiterated his own support of Andre “stray dogs” Bauer.
I can tell you this much: I don’t know whether Nikki Haley is a good Christian or not, but I do know that Andre Bauer is *not* a Christian.