Nikki Haley's book reveals she renamed her husband

 January 7, 2024

Former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, currently running as a Republican presidential candidate, revealed in her 2012 book "Can't Is Not an Option" how she renamed her husband, Michael Haley, nearly 12 years ago.

The revelation, resurfacing amid the Republican primary, sheds light on the personal anecdote of the couple.

The story

In her book, Haley shared the amusing story of how she addressed her then-boyfriend by his given name, Bill, and decided to change it to Michael.

"After we started dating, I looked at him one day and said, 'What's your name?'" she wrote. When he replied, "'You know it's Bill,' he said, puzzled," she playfully responded, "'You just don't look like a Bill. What's your whole name?' 'William Michael.'"

From that day forward, Haley referred to him as Michael, and the name change extended to their friends.

How it happened

As he transferred to Clemson during his sophomore year, the name Michael became universally recognized.

She humorously noted, "Everyone who knew him before I did knows him as Bill, and everyone who met him after I did knows him as Michael."

The amusing anecdote resurfaced when a Vox senior politics correspondent shared an excerpt from Haley's book on social media.

The post garnered significant attention, amassing over 1 million views. Despite having been reported in 2012, the story remains relatively unknown.

Haley's campaign

Nikki Haley's presidential aspirations have gained momentum in recent months, fueled by well-received performances in GOP primary debates.

She climbed to second place in New Hampshire, surpassing Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. In Iowa, Haley is in a competitive position, drawing even with DeSantis for second place behind front-runner Donald Trump, who is making his third consecutive bid for the White House.

Trump maintains a significant lead over Haley, holding an approximate 50-point advantage in FiveThirtyEight’s national poll average. Haley faces a 30-point deficit to Trump in Iowa, and she is also trailing Ron DeSantis in the same state.

Even in New Hampshire, typically considered a more favorable terrain for Haley, she lags behind Trump by 26 points. In her home state of South Carolina, Haley is behind Trump by 29 points.

The Republican presidential race continues to evolve, with candidates positioning themselves for the upcoming primaries. For now, Haley continues to trail Trump, fighting for second place rather than for a victory in the upcoming primaries.

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