The Republican Party is at one of its strongest points in its history: controlling the White House, both houses of Congress, thirty-three governorships, and full control of thirty-two legislatures, and maintain partial control over another five. But before McConnell and Ryan get cocky, it’s important to realize this: this power won’t last for much longer.
Aside of Democratic galvanization, millennials have reached voting age, and they lean heavily to the left, with 51% identifying as Democrats, as opposed to only 35% identifying as Republicans. And this is largely due to Republicans abandoning primary the concerns of millennials, namely LGBT rights and climate change. The solution? President Nikki Haley.
Not only would elevating United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley to a higher position, potentially secretary of state, and eventually president, provide some diversity the GOP, which has earned the reputation of being hostile to minorities and women, but her policies, if her past tenure is any indication, would attract millennial voters.
According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers Survey of 207, 30.8% of millennials believe human rights and equality were “concerning issues”, making it the third most important issues to millennials. The Republican Party’s hard stance against same-sex marriage, as well refusal to address LGBT issues has alienated millennial voters who have come to believe the GOP is hostile to sexual and gender minorities. However, Ambassador Haley, while serving as governor of South Carolina, expressed opposition to the transgender bathroom laws, which may signal a warmer attitude towards LGBT citizens, necessary to better the GOP’s image amongst young people.
More important to millennials is climate change, with 48.8% identifying it as a “concerning issue”, making it the issue of foremost concern among millennials. Serving as governor, then-Governor Haley signed into law an overhaul of solar power regulation in the state of South Carolina, and implemented incentives to draw solar power to the state. At the same time, Haley opposed the Environmental Protection Agency’s attempt to impose carbon taxation. If her tenure as governor is any indication of a Haley administration’s environmental policy, it wouldn’t be an abandonment of conservatism, but rather addressing an issue important to their constituents in a way that aligns with their free-market values.
Finally, as ambassador, Haley has repeatedly demonstrated a strong, principled approach to international affairs. Diverging from President Obama, Ambassador Haley has taken a hard stance against both Iran, Hezbollah, and North Korea, and strong support of Israel, as well as Russia, in contrast to President Trump.
If the GOP wants to remain solvent in the coming elections, it will redefine itself from the populist, opportunist party of Trump, to the principled, responsive party of Haley.
By Louis Gleason, Editor-in-Chief