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Obama has failed America, says Nikki Haley

Last updated on: February 28, 2012 14:45 IST

Obama has failed America, says Nikki Haley

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In a sharp attack on Barack Obama who is seeking re-election, Indian-American governor of South Carolina Nikki Haley has charged that the president has failed to handle America's problems and skipped a White House dinner.

Haley who has endorsed Republican Mitt Romney said Obama was coming in the way of development in her State. "In South Carolina, we can't even pass our own bills without him getting in the way."

"We pass illegal immigration reform, he stops it. We pass voter ID, he stops it. We get Boeing, he stops it. I mean, I'd just like to be a governor and be able to take care of my state. The president's trying to handle the entire country, and he's failing," Haley said.

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Image: Mitt Romney presents a birthday cake to Nikki Haley during a campaign rally in North Charleston
Photographs: Reuters

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The South Carolina Governor skipped a White House dinner hosted by Obamas, citing personal meeting with friends. Though she skipped the dinner Haley, sought more funds from US President to deepen the two ports in her State and talked to him a day later.

"I personally talked to him about the ports that we're all facing -- and the fact that why does it take the Corps of Engineers 10 years to do a deepening project," Haley, 40, told reporters after the meeting of Obama with national governors.

On the eve of the meeting on Sunday, Obama and the First Lady hosted a dinner for the governors, which was skipped by Haley. "We were meeting with friends," she told reporters after a press conference organised by the Republican Governors Association.

Haley said she and her husband "were honoured" last year to attend the dinner, but this year she decided to skip as she wanted to see friends on Sunday night.


Image: Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney applauds South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley as she is introduced to address a campaign rally at Pinkerton Academy in Derry, New Hampshire
Photographs: Reuters

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Obama has failed America, says Nikki Haley

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The first Indian-American governor of any American State, Haley told White House reporters that she didn't thank Obama for having included USD 3.5 million to expand the Corps of Engineers study on deepening the Charleston port.

In place, Haley said she asked Obama to stop his administration, like previous ones, from diverting tens of millions of dollars in collected cargo duties from the Harbour Maintenance Trust Fund and using the money for other needs instead of the intended purpose of dredging ports.

"We've got a lot of areas that if we don't get our ports actually deep enough to be able to accept those big cargo ships, we're going to have a wasted opportunity and watch the Caribbean [ports] be the ones that benefit," Haley said. "His answer was, 'OK, we'll create a committee," she said.

"Well, I've been in government long enough to know when you create a committee, that's one way of passing the buck. We've got less than three years, and we need to make sure that we do this quickly," said the Indian-American governor.


Image: Obama raises his glass is a toast as he plays host to a National Governors Association dinner at the White House in Washington
Photographs: Reuters

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Photographs: Reuters
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