Noem details 'weird' Haley conversation about mentoring

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South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) writes in her forthcoming book about a “weird” conversation she had with former GOP presidential candidate Nikki Haley, who she said called her and offered to be a mentor. 

“I have heard quite a bit about you, and you are doing a good job there in South Dakota,” Haley told Noem, according to an excerpt from South Dakota governor’s upcoming book “No Going Back: The Truth on What’s Wrong with Politics and How We Move America Forward” obtained by Politico. 

The call from the then-U.S. ambassador to the United Nations took place in the summer of 2021, according to Noem’s book.

“I was thinking that maybe you might like a mentor, and maybe I could be someone who could do that for you. Because you’re a governor, you’ve gone through some challenging things that I did as well. I would be more than willing to be a mentor, because you’ve never been in this type of role before.”

Noem said she told Haley that she appreciated the offer and “will certainly let you know.”

The South Dakota governor says she asked how she could get in touch with Haley, to which Haley replied: “You can reach out to my executive assistant.”

“Okay. You can hang on to this number; it’s my personal cell. Call me anytime,” Noem writes that she replied.

Noem then says there was an “awkward pause” before Haley spoke again.

“I . . . just . . . also want you to know one more thing . . . I’ve heard a lot of really good things about you. But I also want you to know that if I hear something bad . . . I will be sure to let you know,” Haley said to Noem.

Then there was another long pause, according to Noem.

“Um, well, thanks for that, Ambassador,” Noem writes.

“Let me be clear,” Haley then added, according to the book. “I’ve heard many good things about you. But when I do hear bad things, I will make sure that you know. I’ve enjoyed talking to you. We will visit soon. Goodbye.”

Haley then hung up, according to Noem, who writes that she followed up by calling her own executive assistant. When the assistant asked how the Haley call went, Noem wrote she replied, “I think I was just threatened by Nikki Haley?”

“It was clear that she wanted me to know that there was only room for one Republican woman in the spotlight. It was weird,” Noem writes of the call.

Noem stated that she never received any calls from Haley, but felt like the former U.N. ambassador was sending her a message.

“I’m the alpha female here, and you should know your place. I actually felt a little sad for her,” Noem wrote.

Noem has been under scrutiny all week for another story in her book, in which she writes of killing a family hunting dog that attacked a neighbor’s chickens.

She shifted her story on the dog after it garnered backlash this week, saying she had to kill “Cricket” because it was a dangerous animal and posed a risk to her children.

Noem has been widely seen as a potential vice presidential pick for former President Trump, though questions have been raised this week about whether the dog anecdote would doom her chances.

Haley was defeated by Trump in the GOP primary. While Haley worked as United Nations ambassador in the Trump administration, their relationship cooled in the primary season.

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