Haley defends past after 'largest' town hall forum in Charleston

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Nearly 500 people showed up at Wednesday night's town hall meeting with Gov. Nikki Haley. Many of those in attendance asked South Carolina's first female governor some pretty tough questions.

Haley did her best to address several issues and after the town hall answered questions concerning her past at Physician's Memorial Auditorium on the College of Charleston campus.

"I never gave that number," Haley said. "I never signed for that number. What I did do were my tax returns and those are the ones that are right."

Haley took the defense saying allegations of inflating her salary on a job application simply aren't true.

"No, I'm not concerned about it," Haley said. "It was a piece of paper that I didn't fill out, that I didn't sign, that had no information on me on it at all."

The application in question was for a fundraising position at Lexington Medical Center. The most recent in a string of controversy surrounding the governor's past, but Wednesday night wasn't all about the governor.

North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey asked for Haley's support in the great rail debate.

"You have my complete cooperation as we go through this process," Haley said.

Questions on Medicaid cuts, tuition on higher education and job growth were all posed to Haley. According to Political Science expert Jeri Cabot, Haley did well, but her responses didn't satisfy.

"Very few hard solutions," Cabot said. " 'We're working at it. We're looking at it. We want to address that issue.' Very few hard answers."

But Haley says she has learned a lot on the road and is seeing a change.

"The movement tours have been great," Haley said. "We've been all over the state. South Carolina is becoming a state where people are no longer complaining about it, they do something about it."

Haley's staff members said that Wednesday night's stop in Charleston was the largest crowd they have had on the seven-city tour. The last stop is in Bluffton on Monday.

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