In doing so, Haley has managed something unique. She leaves the Trump administration with her reputation not merely undiminished but actually enhanced. She's popular with both pro- and anti-Trump factions on the right, and with shockingly high numbers of independents and
OK, full disclosure: I'm biased and conflicted. I'm biased because I am a fan of Haley. I'm also conflicted because my wife,
While I'm at it, let me also say that one of my wife's more admirable (and annoying) traits is that she never tells me the cool stuff. For all I know, she's got the 411 on what's going on at Area 51. So if there's some secret scandal or devious plan behind Haley's resignation, I don't know what it is and neither does Jessica -- unless she's lying to me.
Whatever Haley's thinking is, one thing is obvious: She has better political timing than anyone else currently in the business. She's not leaving until January, but by announcing it now, she can't be seen as deserting ship if the midterms go badly.
There's the old saying: "It's better to be lucky than good." Haley is both.
An outspoken Trump critic in the primaries, she was nonetheless Trump's choice for
Also, Trump likes hiring prominent critics in order to make them acknowledge his victory over them. Others say he wanted to unite the party. Recall his overture to sharp Trump critic
Meanwhile, the timing was fortuitous for Haley to leave before the end of her second term as governor. She had recently handled both a particularly horrific church shooting and the subsequent wrenching debate about the Confederate flag flying at the state capitol nearly perfectly.
Even so, it was a big risk for Haley to take the
Because it's a foreign policy post, Haley didn't have to weigh in on every Trumpian controversy. But when she did -- on the "Me Too" movement, Russian meddling, etc. -- she did it in a way that differentiated herself from Trump and his sycophants without seeming disloyal or mealy-mouthed.
Haley made it all look easy, in part because she's a good politician -- a daughter of Indian immigrants in a state renowned for ugly politics who managed to win two governor's races.
But she's also willing to do something too few politicians with charm and luck on their side bother to do: her homework. After all, she started out as the family bookkeeper at 13.
The timing and manner of her decision was near perfect. Once again, she's not only leaving on a high note, she's leaving as the only prominent Republican around today who can simultaneously unite the party and also appeal to non-
If Trump runs in 2020, it's doubtful anyone could take the nomination from him. If he doesn't run, the
It's all about timing, and at 46, Haley's got all the time she needs.
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