An Upstate political strategist has confirmed that Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour will hold private meetings with South Carolina business leaders Wednesday in Greenville and Spartanburg.
Chip Felkel said he has been contacted by Barbour for advice on a possible 2012 presidential run.
I think that Governor Barbour is in the stages in making a very important decision. South Carolina is important in terms of the primary process, he knows that. And I think at this point, he’s giving it a look. No decisions made yet, but this is an opportunity for him to come in and meet some people and talk.
Barbour was in Columbia for the Haley inauguration and he met with key legislators and business leaders. CNN reports that state GOP Chair Karen Floyd will host part of his visit today.
The South Carolina Republican presidential primary is one of the most telling for the party, says Felkel,
We’re going to see a very strong, steady flow of a variety of candidates. But let’s not forget that demographically, South Carolina is probably a better snapshot of the Republican Party base than in Iowa or New Hampshire for that matter, with all due respect. We’ve got retirees that have moved in, we’ve got Tea Party folks, we’ve got social conservatives, we’ve got fiscal conservatives. So, if you’re really going to test the waters a little bit, South Carolina is the place to be.
Barbour is one among a handful of potential GOP presidential candidates who are testing the party waters in South Carolina.