In February did Haley announce Roán García-Quintana’s inclusion on her campaign’s steering committee.
García-Quintana is a board member of the Council of Conservative Citizens, which SPLC refers to as a “White Nationalist” hate group, and is executive director of the anti-immigrant “Americans Have Had Enough Coalition.”
Both organizations defend school segregation, promote racial purity, support fencing the Mexican border, and call for immediate deportation of non-U.S. citizens.
Haley has no intentions to remove him from her committee, her campaign director told Patch today.
In a response by press release, state Democratic Party chairman Jaime Harrison said García-Quintana “has been unapologetic about his opposition to ‘mixing races’ and spent his career leading organizations that defended Jim Crow laws and have been identified as white nationalist groups. Nikki Haley appointing an accused white supremacist to her campaign committee is appalling and no joke for the people of South Carolina.”
His Latino name is no reflection on his beliefs or even himself, he implies. García-Quintana acknowledges he was born in Cuba, but denies any Hispanic heritage. Now a naturalized U.S. citizen, , he claims his ancestors were natives of Spain who settled in Cuba, thus qualifying him to be European and white, according to SPLC.
He states he volunteered with the presidential campaigns of Barry Goldwater, Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan, and was once an officer with the Lexington County Republican Party and a member of the state GOP’s executive committee.
In his work experience, García-Quintana lists former employment with Baker & Associates, a campaign consulting firm chaired by Lee Atwater, who created the now-infamous “Southern Strategy” for the Republican Party that included use of subtle racist terms in campaign platforms.
In a 2008 bid for State Senate Dist. 7, he was soundly defeated by incumbent Sen. Robert Anderson, an African-American Democrat, taking less than 27 percent of the vote.