Former US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley is already often referred to as a possible Republican presidential candidate for either 2024 or 2028, The Guardian reports.
According to the newspaper, much will depend on whether incumbent President Donald Trump wins the November election.
Former and current Haley aides, for their part, described her moves as a meticulous plan to remain involved in key Republican policy circles.
Tim Chapman, the executive director of Haley’s Stand for America (SFA) non-profit group, was cited by The Guardian as saying that when she left the Trump administration, “she told the president that she wanted to stay engaged and promote good public policy”.
“SFA is partly a platform for her to do that type of voice, to be engaged in public policy,” Chapman pointed out.
He was echoed by Jon Thompson, a top Republican strategist and a former communications director of the Republican Governors Association (RGA), where Haley was a special guest.
Thompson referred to Haley’s background as a South Carolina governor and UN ambassador, which he suggested “will make her formidable if she chooses to run in 2024”.
“She has a strong résumé of actual governance and international experience, and would likely appeal to female suburban voters who Republicans desperately need to attract to win future elections, and has a solid conservative record from her time as governor. Twenty-twenty-four is still a long way off, but she’s making all the right moves now to be in a good position later,” he underlined.
The Guardian also cited an unnamed ex-Haley aide as saying that if Trump is re-elected, she will probably “keep doing what she’s doing for two years and then start running in earnest”.
“If [presumptive Democratic hopeful Joe] Biden wins, it’ll actually make it a bit easier because then she can kind of pound away at Biden from the moment he’s inaugurated and then turn that momentum into a presidential campaign,” the aide argued.
In November 2019, the anonymous author of a book asserted that Haley was “under active consideration” to replace Vice President Mike Pence ahead of the country’s 2020 election race.
In the more than 250-page book titled "A Warning", the author who was only identified as a "senior official in the Trump administration”, described the former US Ambassador to UN as one of those who have been “in the lurch for weeks, months, or longer" on how long their tenure at the White House might last.
According to the author, Haley was seen as the ideal candidate to “step in as vice president” instead of Pence.
Enough of the false rumors. Vice President Pence has been a dear friend of mine for years. He has been a loyal and trustworthy VP to the President. He has my complete support. ❤️🇺🇸 pic.twitter.com/waPyQjC8Eb— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) August 21, 2019
This was preceded by Haley rejecting, in August 2019, “false rumours” of her drive to run for the 2020 presidency in a tweet, where she also signalled her “complete support” for Pence, who “has been a dear friend of mine for years”.