GOP presidential hopeful Nikki Haley speaks during a campaign event on Monday, Nov. 27, 2023, in Bluffton, S.C. | Meg Kinnard/AP
Nikki Haley’s presidential campaign is launching its first ad of the GOP primary on Friday, highlighting “chaos in our streets” and calling for a president with “moral clarity.”
The 30 second spot, shared first with POLITICO, is part of a massive $10 million ad buy in Iowa and New Hampshire. It will run on broadcast and cable TV and across digital platforms. Haley had previously relied on TV advertising by her aligned super PAC, SFA Fund Inc.
“A president must have moral clarity and know the difference between good and evil,” Haley says in the ad. “Today, China, Russia, and Iran are advancing. There’s chaos in our streets and college campuses. Our security is threatened at home and abroad.”
The ad features video of Haley, the former South Carolina governor and U.N. ambassador, taking a vote during a United Nations Security Council meeting and visiting Israel. It also shows footage of shootings in the street, recent pro-Palestinian protests in front of the White House, and 2018 video of Iranian lawmakers burning a paper U.S. flag in Tehran.
“It’s time for a new generation of conservative leadership,” Haley says in the ad. “We have to leave behind the chaos and drama of the past and strengthen our country, our pride, and our purpose.”
Notably, as Haley labors to appeal to a broad swath of Republicans and independents, the ad makes no mention of current GOP frontrunner, former President Donald Trump, or President Joe Biden. But it implicitly echoes a line Haley has used on the trail — most recently at a campaign town hall in South Carolina — that while she agrees with a lot of Trump’s policies, “rightly or wrongly, chaos follows him.”
“We have too much division in this country, and too many threats around the world to be sitting in chaos once again,” she said at the event.
The ad launch comes amid a burst in momentum for Haley ahead of the first nominating contests. This week, Haley was endorsed by Americans for Prosperity Action. The influential conservative political network founded by the Koch brothers pledged to provide not only financial backing, but on-the-ground support from its grassroots activists. The campaign has also seen a spike of interest from new donors and supporters, though she remains far behind Trump in polls.
“Americans are tired of the chaos and drama of the past,” Haley spokesperson Olivia Perez-Cubas said in a statement about the ad release. “Nikki Haley is the one candidate who offers both a new conservative direction for the country and is a hands-down winner against Joe Biden.”