COLUMBIA — Gov. Nikki Haley's most recent campaign disclosure report, filed Sunday, reveals that she raised nearly $32,000 from mostly out-of-state sources while she was in New York late last month.
Democrats seized on the opportunity to criticize Haley for leaving the state June 29 while the Legislature was in still in session. The Legislature voted to dismiss 27 of her 35 vetoes on that day.
Haley said the purpose of her trip was Republican Governors Association work. Haley dismissed the Democrats' criticism.
"I think that they can look and see that during session we didn't do any fundraising," the governor said Monday. "... That fundraiser was planned for months and we went ahead and we did it. It wasn't during regular day schedule. It wasn't on state dime and it was a private event."
The governor's staff had previously confirmed to The Post and Courier that she was in New York City on June 29 for business with the Republican Governors Association and time with her family, but the office did not disclose the fundraiser.
All but one of the 19 contributions came from out-of-state donors. Atlantic Urology Clinics LLC from Conway gave the governor $1,000. Most the contributions were from New York.
Tyler Jones, a Democratic operative with S.C. Forward Progress, said "Nikki Haley doesn't care about being governor of South Carolina. She leaves every chance she gets and is more interested in national politics. Instead of lying about it, she should just admit it — she's really not that interested in us."
Haley's press secretary, Rob Godfrey, said previously the governor left Columbia on in the afternoon on June 29 afternoon for Republican Governors Association events in New York City on June 30, and then spent time with her husband and kids from July 1 to July 3.
Her public schedule made no mention of her trip to New York but included three RGA meetings, three calls for the group and a newspaper interview that together spanned from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Haley attended private meetings on behalf of the RGA on those dates, association spokesman Mike Schrimpf said.
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