Politico

Nikki Haley: It is a 'lie' that America is racist


America is not racist, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said Monday at the Republican National Convention, in a speech in which she urged voters to continue supporting America despite its flaws.

Haley, the daughter of Indian immigrants, said the conversation about race in America that sparked protests across the country in response to police brutality against the Black community was “personal” to her.

“My father wore a turban. My mother wore a sari,” she said of her childhood in South Carolina, which elected her as the first woman and first minority to serve as governor in 2010. “We faced discrimination and hardship, but my parents never gave into grievance and hate.”

“It’s now fashionable to say that America is racist. That is a lie,” said Haley, who removed the Confederate flag from South Carolina’s statehouse as governor. “America is not a racist country.”

Haley, who said President Donald Trump would build an America where every child has an opportunity to succeed, said “every black life” matters, including Black police officers who have been killed on the job, Black small-business owners and Black children who have been shot on the playground.

Haley was governor of South Carolina when a gunman opened fire in a Black church in Charleston in 2015, and said the country should emulate the response to that tragedy today.

“After that horrific tragedy, we didn’t turn against each other. We came together, Black and white, Democrat and Republican,” she said. “What happened then should give us hope now. America isn’t perfect, but the principles we hold dear are perfect.”

Haley, who left the Trump administration on good terms in 2018, has been building her national profile since leaving office and is widely seen as an early front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination in 2024. Some South Carolina Republicans are already pressing her to consider running, though she has publicly been quiet about her ambitions.

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