Welcome to the 2024 Republican presidential race, Nikki Haley. So far, you’re saying all the right things.
Haley’s Tuesday announcement makes her the second declared candidate, after former President Donald Trump — under whom she served as UN ambassador. And the former South Carolina gov gently took him on by declaring that it’s “time for a new generation of leadership” in the party in order “to rediscover fiscal responsibility, secure our border and strengthen our country, our pride and our purpose.”
That deftly echoed Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders (R-Ark.), who pointedly noted in the GOP response to President Biden’s State of the Union speech that a “new generation” of Republican leaders is “stepping up” to be “changemakers for the American people.”
Others in that generation are likely to toss their hats into the ’24 scrum (with many eyes on Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis). Good: This far out, let all the flowers bloom. One of them should emerge as the best, far younger, alternative to Biden.
Some fear the race will grow too crowded, and so let Trump dominate. But the field has plenty of time to winnow, and the party needs some serious debate first: Battles in Washington aren’t enough to settle a forward-looking, coherent GOP agenda.
We’ve discussed time and time again why the ex-prez is the wrong guy for ’24. We look forward to the competition we have every reason to expect will produce the man or woman who can beat first Trump, now 76, and then Biden, 80.
America is so ready to move on.