By William McDonald
(Talk Media News) — Republican South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley delivered a carefully crafted response to President Obama’s final State of the Union Tuesday night, taking swipes at both Democrats as well as GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump during her first national address.
The GOP chose Haley in an attempt to reach beyond the typical demographic of the Republican part that is particularly visible during a presidential election year. This year the first female governor of a conservative southern state optimistically responded to the Commander-in-Chief’s very public defense of his agenda.
Haley took the opportunity to reflect on her parents immigration status. A child of first generation Indian-Americans, Haley said that “no one who is willing to work hard, abide by our laws, and love our traditions should ever feel unwelcome in this country.” A direct swipe at the leading GOP presidential contender, Donald Trump, who has inflamed the national dialogue with anti-immigration comments and calling on the banning of Muslims coming into the US.
While Haley softened the GOP leadership on immigration, she continued to defend the conservative narrative pushing against Syrian’s seeking refuge. In “this age of terrorism, we must not let in refugees whose intentions cannot be determined,” Haley said.
Despite the unemployment rate being nearly cut in half to five percent during Obama’s two terms and, according to the White House, with over 14 million jobs created, Haley criticized Obama’s economic shortfalls, touting that if Republicans had “held the White House, taxes would be lower for working families, and we’d put the brakes on runaway spending and debt.”
While Obama carried a thick tone of confidence and optimism of his administrations accomplishments, Haley criticized some of the major policies Obama outlined during his final SOTU speech.
“As he enters his final year in office, many Americans are still feeling the squeeze of an economy too weak to raise income levels. We’re feeling a crushing national debt, a health care plan that has made insurance less affordable and doctors less available, and chaotic unrest in many of our cities,” Haley said. Adding, ”even worse, we are facing the most dangerous terrorist threat our nation has seen since Sept. 11th, and this president appears either unwilling or unable to deal with it.”
Haley is a valuable choice in the Republican party with rumors of her being considered a vice presidential choice and a sense of electability on the national stage.