Although it appears that Donald Trump, after two primaries, has likely sealed victory in the Republican primary, some conservatives are still encouraging Nikki Haley to continue onward.
Landon Parvin, once a speechwriter for Ronald Reagan encourages the former UN ambassador to continue her fight against Trump, saying she should embrace the “feeling of freedom” that comes from “going for broke.”
Peggy Noonan at The Wall Street Journal spoke to Parvin and reported his advice for defeating the former president:
“You alone now carry the banner. Speak up for all the Republicans who have been demeaned, diminished and threatened by Trump. He can no longer hurt you. Pick up the sword. You don’t have to give Shakespeare’s band-of-brothers speech but live it!”
Lean into being a woman. “The woman card is untapped by Republican women because they don’t like identity politics.” But the suburbs will appreciate it, and Mr. Trump is going after you as a woman, insulting how you present yourself, calling you “birdbrain.” “You were once in the Little Miss Bamberg, S.C., pageant and sang ‘This Land Is Your Land.’ That’s a beautiful thing for the daughter of immigrants. Trump desecrates such images, this man who owned the Miss USA pageant and grabbed women by certain parts. This is bigger than you. Speak up for Republican women.”
But the issue is Mr. Trump’s nature. Start, Landon says, with something like this: “Remember when Trump said he could shoot somebody in the middle of Fifth Avenue and people would still vote for him? Well, if he would try to shoot somebody in the middle of the street here in South Carolina, we would return fire. And that is what I intend to do today.”
Another thought: Admit you are not as entertaining or maybe exciting as he is, but that’s OK, you’re running not to entertain but to lead. A rabid squirrel in a chemistry lab is exciting to watch but can do a lot of damage. You believe in old-fashioned values like professionalism and capability. “I am here to capably close the border. Wouldn’t that be the real excitement? I’m here to capably force the executive agencies to end their woke, partisan nonsense. Wouldn’t it be exciting if somebody got that done?” “Doing the real job of the presidency so that the American people benefit actually is exciting.” Perhaps one day when she worked for Mr. Trump she saw the blubbery self-pity kick in; perhaps she wanted to shake him by the shoulders and say snap out of it, we have a country to save.
Haley appears to be taking the old scribe’s advice. She recently ramped up her attacks against Trump, commenting on his age, questioning his mental fitness, and even hitting at his legal troubles.
On Friday afternoon, for example, after a court announced a jury judgment against Trump to the tune of $83 million in damages to be paid to E. Jean Carroll, who sued the former president for defamation, Haley called his legal troubles a distraction to policy issues that Republicans care about.
“America can do better than Donald Trump and Joe Biden,” she wrote.
The pair will next face off in the South Carolina primary on February 24. Despite the contest taking place in Haley’s home state, the former president has maintained a sizable lead in polling for several months.