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After Friday night’s town hall with Nikki Haley, we talked with a voter named Ryan who will not be caucusing for Haley. Not because of anything she said, but because he lives in South Dakota.

Following Friday’s event in Sioux City, Ryan said he will support Haley in the primary and would not vote for Donald J. Trump even in the general election if Trump is the nominee. He’s voted for Trump in the past, but not this time.

“It won’t be Trump. I agree with (Haley), he was probably the right guy at the right time,” Ryan said. “It did take somebody as crazy as him to shut the world down, but now that we’re past COVID I think we need somebody who is a little more easy on the throttle and not so knee-jerk. We don’t need a dictator, which I think he was large and in charge.”

Ryan also liked Tim Scott, but he’s dropped out, leaving Haley as the top pick.

“She’s got some good points on not only the national issues that we have, but I think I’m a little bit more interested in her from a world standpoint and the fact she has some experience on the world stage. I just hope she can make it through the race. She’s got a ways to go.”

Ryan works in the meat industry. His wife is in the nursing industry. Both areas are short of workers and Ryan wanted to ask Haley about immigration.

“I completely disagree with leaving the border open the way that Biden has, but all of us are short labor,” he said. “Last year I was invited to one of our franchisee meetings and they hired a speaker to come in to talk about labor. The guy had worked under five Presidents. He was like, ‘I’m not here to talk politics. I have worked for both sides. I don’t care. But the only saving grace for our country is what’s coming across the border now.'”

With the baby boomers retiring, families having fewer kids and 70-year-olds who used to work at the pharmacy or as door greeters at Walmart pre-COVID deciding not to return to the workforce post-COVID, the labor pool is much more shallow than it was.

“We’re all hurting for people,” he said. “My question to Haley was going to be how do we make lemonade out of lemons. Deporting 8 or 14 million people is not going to happen, physically it can’t happen. So what do we need to do to make sure people are paying in their taxes, they have insurance? Right now we’re overflowing all of our resources. We’re buying hotels and putting people, whether they’re good or bad doesn’t matter, we’re going to house them. We’re paying for it. Well, how do we turn that into labor so that they can support their families?”


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