Nikki Haley's Popularity Slips in South Carolina

 @Gooch700
on September 03 2011 8:41 PM
South Carolina's Governor Haley gestures as she address the RedState Gathering of conservative activists in Charleston
A federal judge has put a preliminary injunction on a tough South Carolina immigration law that Gov. Nikki Haley supported. Reuters

Governor Nikki Haley is gradually losing the support of voters in South Carolina, according to a new poll by the Democratic firm, Public Policy Polling.

The poll indicates that Haley’s favorability rating declined to 41 percent in August (from 42 percent in June), with 43 percent, expressing their disapproval of her job performance (up from 41 percent.)

South Carolinians are not particularly fond of their new Governor Nikki Haley, and they like her 2010 opponent Vincent Sheheen slightly better, but voters are still giving her the benefit of the doubt, the pollsters stated.

However, the survey also suggested that if Haley again ran against here 2010 Democratic opponent, Vincent Sheheen, she would defeat him by 49-43 percent, a larger margin than the 51-47 percent triumph she scored last year.

Unlike some of her controversial counterparts, like Florida’s Rick Scott and Ohio’s John Kasich, Haley is a rare governor of the 2010 Tea Party breed who has not turned voters off so much that they have buyers’ remorse. Despite a slightly underwater 41-43 job approval rating, she would still defeat Sheheen, and by even a slightly larger margin than last fall, the pollsters added.

The poll results come in the wake of some inflammatory remarks Haley made about President Barack Obama regarding a complaint filed by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) in April against Boeing Corp. for transferring a a787 Dreamliner production plant to South Carolina.

Speaking to reporters by a conference call, Haley accused Obama of cowardice in nor commenting on the NLRB’s measure.

“This president works for us,” she said. “This president owes us an answer. This president owes Boeing an answer. This president owes every business in this country an answer on what he thinks of the NLRB. If he is supportive of them, say he is supportive of them. If he thinks what they are doing is wrong, say what you think is wrong. But to be silent is cowardly and is just something that is unacceptable for the president of our country.”

Haley also attacked the NLRB.

“It’s a rogue agency that has a bully mentality that is absolutely un-American,” she stated. “I don’t know any other way to say it.”

The move by Boeing would create 1,000 high-paying jobs for South Carolina, but the NLRB has complained that Boeing is seeking to undermine collective bargaining, since the state is traditionally hostile to labor unions.

Haley is not the only Republican lawmaker who is unhappy with the NLRB.

Congressman Darrel Issa of California, who also serves as Chairman of the House Oversight and Governmental Reform Committee, issued subpoenas to the NLRB, which the agency refuses to answer.

“You have an agency now that is ignoring Congress.” Haley added.

“They’re saying they’re not going to respond. Congressman Issa has made it very clear that they need certain information. And they are just ignoring it. And that’s what shows they are above the law. And the only time you act like you are above the law is when you’ve got a president there to protect you. That’s the part that bothers me.”

Haley asked Obama to exercise some control over the NLRB.

“I respect our president,” she said. “I want him to do well. I want him to succeed. I just don’t know how we as a country can have faith in someone who continues to protect these unions, continues to protect an agency that doesn’t even respond to Congress and continues to protect the fact that we’re sending jobs overseas and be OK with it. There is something very wrong with all of this. We have to demand that he speak out. We have to demand that he respond to the actions of the NLRB. He at least has to respond to the actions of the people he appointed. That’s something he continues not to do and I think we need to be in his face every day of the week until he decides to answer it.”

Back in June, Obama sought to distinguish his administration from the NLRB decision.

“Essentially, the NLRB made a finding that Boeing had not followed the law in making a decision to move a plant,” he said. “And it’s an independent agency. It’s going before a judge. So I don’t want to get into the details of the case. I don't know all the facts. That's going to be up to a judge to decide. What I do know is this -- that as a general proposition, companies need to have the freedom to relocate. They have to follow the law, but that’s part of our system. And if they’re choosing to relocate here in the United States, that’s a good thing. And what it doesn’t make -- what I think defies common sense would be a notion that we would be shutting down a plant or laying off workers because labor and management can’t come to a sensible agreement.”

Haley is well-known for her opposition to unions,

In fact, in January 2011, unions in South Carolina filed a suit against her and her administration, citing that hostility toward unions is “unconstitutional.”

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