Sarah Palin’s Pick, Rep. Gov. Candidate Nikki Haley Had An Affair With Blogger Will Folks?
COLUMBIA, S.C. — A political blogger claimed Monday that he had an inappropriate physical relationship with Republican gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley, a tea party favorite who called the allegations a “disgraceful smear.”
Haley, a legislator vying to become the state’s first female governor, said the allegation was planted to derail a campaign gaining steam with high-powered endorsements, including former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and ex-South Carolina first lady Jenny Sanford.
The allegation was made by Will Folks in a post on his blog. Folks offered no proof of the relationship and refused to go into details, saying only that the relationship took place in 2007 when he did communications work for Haley, including writing speeches and news releases.
Folks pleaded guilty to criminal domestic violence in 2005 and is now a political consultant. He also runs FITSNews.com, a conservative site that features occasionally insightful commentary, thinly sourced stories of state political intrigue and photos of women in bikinis.
Folks’ allegation comes nearly a year after Gov. Mark Sanford admitted to having an affair, and two weeks before the June 14 primary, a four-way contest that includes a congressman, the lieutenant governor and the state attorney general.
Haley said the attack was a distraction to the race.
“I have been 100 percent faithful to my husband throughout our 13 years of marriage. This claim against me is categorically and totally false,” Haley, a 38-year-old mother of two, said in a statement. “It is quite simply South Carolina politics at its worst.”