South Carolina Set for Haley vs. Sheheen II Governor Battle

Image: South Carolina Set for Haley vs. Sheheen II Governor Battle Gov. Nikki Haley, left, and state Sen. Vincent Sheheen

Wednesday, 26 Mar 2014 04:23 PM

By Joe Battaglia

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Republican incumbent Nikki Haley and Democratic state Sen. Vincent Sheheen each filed paperwork with the state Election Commission in Columbia on Tuesday, setting up a November rematch for the governorship of South Carolina.

Haley beat Sheheen by 4.5 percentage points in the 2010 election to become South Carolina's first female governor. At age 42, she is the youngest active governor in the U.S., and is the first female governor in any state of Indian heritage. Born Nimrata Nikki Randhawa to Sikh parents, Haley converted to the Methodist church later in life.

According to The State, Haley is hoping that lower joblessness and her record of creating jobs will win her another term.

"This administration has worked hard as we possibly can to improve the lives of all people," Haley said. "I represent all people. I fight for all people. And we have done that by putting all these jobs in rural counties."

Sheheen, 42, however is banking on missteps by Haley tipping things in his favor this time around, including her inability to lower unemployment as much as initially promised, a massive data breach at the Revenue Department, delays in sharing information during a tuberculosis outbreak, a failure to address to address K-12 education issues, and allegations of adultery.

"It’s been a rough 3 ½ years in South Carolina under our current governor, but I think the next four years are incredibly exciting and we’re going to bring leadership and accountability back to a broken state government," Sheheen told The State.

But Sheheen figures to face an uphill battle against an incumbent Haley. Unlike four years ago, when she needed to survive a divisive Republican primary before winning office, Haley enters this race with more than twice the amount of cash available as Sheheen — $3.7 million to $1.4 million.

According to The State, her television push has already begun in earnest. Haley's third ad campaign of the year, paid for by an outside group, began airing on Wednesday. Two of the three, including this latest, were paid for by the pro-Haley Movement Fund political group. The other was paid for by the Republican Governors Association, of which Haley is on the executive committee.

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