Amidst the backdrop of military aircraft at Wings Over the Rockies in Centennial, Colorado, Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley delivered an urgent address to voters one week before the Super Tuesday primaries. The campaign promoted the event as a two-hour affair, but Haley’s entire appearance, including her introduction by former Arapahoe GOP Chair Suzanne Taheri and her speech, delivered to a compact gathering of supporters, lasted just over 30 minutes.

Haley’s remarks centered on the nation’s future and a vision for America’s youth, marked by concerns over national debt, job prospects, and housing affordability.

“The reason I’m doing this is I don’t want my kids to live like this. I don’t want your kids or grandkids to live like this,” she declared.

She further lamented the country’s current state of discord, adding, “They’re living in a country that’s under a tent of anger and division and hatred. Our kids deserve to know what normal feels like.”

However, the brevity of Haley’s speech left policy details unexplored, a point noted by attendees. Lacey Estrada, an unaffiliated voter, lauded Haley’s rhetoric but voiced a desire for more depth: “She spoke wonderfully, but I wish she elaborated more on her politics and her plan of action if she becomes president.”

Echoing Estrada, Douglas County teen Audrey called for policy clarity, particularly for young voters: “As a teenager who will be able to vote for this upcoming election, it’s super important for me to vote for a political figure who will help my generation. I think Nikki Haley represents the interests of a lot of teens, but I didn’t really hear anything specific.”

As Haley’s voice resonated in Colorado, Michigan voters were already casting primary ballots. She seized this moment to challenge Republicans to withdraw support for former President Donald Trump, whom she described as a “self-involved and unstable leader” who would be unable to secure a win in the upcoming November elections. She reiterated her stance that the Republican National Committee should not finance Trump’s legal fees, a stance she has frequently taken.

Post-speech, Haley refrained from fielding questions from the media, reflecting the challenges her campaign faces after a series of electoral defeats. Her campaign trail, including recent stops in Michigan and Minnesota, has become a battleground for challenging Trump’s grip on the Republican Party and asserting her vision for America.

Haley’s campaign suffered a financial blow when Americans for Prosperity Action, the conservative super PAC founded by the Koch brothers, announced the cessation of its spending on her presidential bid after her loss in the South Carolina primary.

Haley’s appearance fulfilled a contractual obligation her campaign made to the Colorado GOP when it paid a $20,000 fee for access to the party’s primary ballot, rather than the $40,000 level which did not require an in-person event.

Haley greeting supporters.

Despite this, Haley continued criticizing Trump’s policies, advocating for fiscal responsibility and more robust border controls.

“Don’t you think it’s finally time we had an accountant in the White House?” she posed to the crowd, a nod to her previous profession, pledging to curb spending and borrowing.

She further committed to implementing stringent measures on unauthorized southern border crossings and to initiate a nationwide mandate obligating businesses to confirm the employment eligibility of their workers, mirroring the program she established in South Carolina.

“Let’s defund sanctuary cities once and for all,” she stated, receiving raucous applause. “Instead of catch and release, we’re going to go to catch and deport.”

Her criticisms extended to Trump’s approach to immigration reform and foreign policy, particularly regarding the conflict in Ukraine. She accused Trump of empowering Russian President Vladimir Putin and compromising the safety of U.S. service members.

Republican presidential candidate and former United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley speaks at a campaign stop Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2024, in Centennial, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

“In South Carolina last week, Donald Trump got up on stage, went off his teleprompter, and said that he would actually encourage Putin to invade our allies,” said Haley, referencing Trump’s previous assertion that he considered denying defense to NATO allies who did not meet the alliance’s defense spending targets.

With Super Tuesday looming, Haley emphasized the significance of voter turnout: “Tuesday is Election Day, so this is what I need you to do: Vote. Vote,” she urged. “I need you to make sure that ten other people vote along with you.”

Despite facing an arduous path in a political landscape still dominated by Trump, Haley’s campaign resolved to continue its push for the nomination.