There are some relationships I just can’t seem to understand.

Mad Men bombshell Christina Hendricks and her geeky hubby Geoffrey Arend of the new procedural Body of Proof.

American Idol’s Jennifer Lopez — a.k.a. People magazine’s most beautiful woman in the world — and Latin music superstar Marc Anthony, who has the dead-eye, gaunt-faced look of a heroin addict.

And you can now add the GOP and Nikki Haley.

Seriously, I don’t get it.

What is it about the scandal-backed stair climber Haley that Republican Party power players in D.C. find so fascinating.

I mean, the lady is damaged goods.

She repeatedly failed to pay her taxes.

She either lied about her salary on an application to the Lexington Medical Center or lied about her salary on her income tax forms.

She fired the largest benefactor in University of South Carolina history, Darla Moore, from the school’s board of trustees and then professed to nationally syndicated columnist Kathleen Parker that Moore was ousted because she failed to meet with Haley or return her phone calls when recently released records indicate that the governor had offered Moore’s post to a campaign contributor days after taking office.

And she continues to spin the lie that the GOP attacked her with allegations that she had an affair with FITSNews’ Will Folks and GOP consultant Larry Marchant only after she became the frontrunner in the 2010 race for the SCGOP gubernatorial nomination. (Haley knew that Free Times reporter Corey Hutchins was set to publish a piece on the allegations before the poll was conducted putting Nikki in the lead.)

Oh. I get it. She’s an Indian American. And a woman. And the backwoods, knuckle-dragging good ole bigots in South Carolina have tried to do everything in their power to make sure that she fails … that is if you ignore the fact that the entire SCGOP establishment has gotten behind her nearly every step of the way since she got the most votes on Primary Day in 2010. (Let’s see, former state AG Henry McMaster and his campaign staff have joined forces with Haley, while Senate Majority Leader Harvey Peeler has professed more than once his complete devotion to Nikki.)

And that doesn’t even account for the national media’s — and the GOP’s — decision to ignore the fact that the one guy who posed the greatest threat to Haley — Will Folks — was one of Haley’s most ardent champions and still remains ideologically simpatico with Haley, unlike, say, McMaster and Peeler and the rest of the GOP establishment.

But I get it. I do. The GOP and the national mainstream media have latched onto a narrative here — Nikki Haley is a shining star because her sheer fucking radiance won over the hate-filled hearts of South Carolina’s native population of bubbas and bigots — and they sure as hell don’t want to let it go.

They are fools of the first order. Clowns of the Clueless Cluck Clan. Asshats of the intellectually dishonest apocalypse.

And at the forefront is Fox News contributor and syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer.

In a column out today sizing up the 2012 GOP presidential field, Krauthammer has the misguided audacity to proclaim that Nikki Haley is a good presidential candidate for GOP in 2016.

Now, look, we know that Nikki has ambitions beyond South Carolina. She’s writing a memoir after only a few months in office for Pete’s sake, and she recently met with a group in Florida to discuss Middle East politics. (Really?)

But Haley is clearly suffering from delusions of grandeur. She has one too many strikes against her. And although the national press is too timid to attack her now, in 2016 things will be quite different.

The GOP would be wise not to hitch a hide on this particular shooting star. It’s destined for a flameout.

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