Top Haley staffer joins Pence’s political group

A top staffer to Nikki Haley’s political nonprofit is leaving to join former Vice President Mike Pence’s advocacy group as both former Trump administration officials ready potential 2024 campaigns.

Tim Chapman, who has served as executive director of Haley’s Stand for America since 2020, is departing to become a senior adviser to Pence’s group, Advancing American Freedom.

“Tim Chapman is one of the brightest stars in the conservative movement, and we are so thrilled he’s joining the team to advance the cause of American culture, American opportunity, and American leadership,” Pence said in a statement.

Betsy Ankney, executive director for Stand for America PAC, said in a statement that Chapman is “terrific and we’re happy he found a great spot to continue to advocate for conservative policy ideas.”

Chapman’s defection from Haley’s camp to Pence’s team comes as both have openly talked about the prospect of running for president in 2024, and it further bolsters Pence’s staff as he weighs his future.

Both Haley and Pence have said in recent months they believe Republicans should look to new leaders in 2024, even as they have been careful not to directly attack former President Trump, who declared his candidacy in November.

Haley, the former South Carolina governor who served as ambassador to the United Nations during the Trump administration, gave yet another clear indication on Thursday night that she is likely to jump into the 2024 GOP primary field.

“When you’re looking at a run for president, you look at two things. You first look at, does the current situation push for new leadership? The second question is, am I that person that could be that new leader?” she said on Fox News. “Yes, we need to go in a new direction. And can I be that leader? Yes, I think I can be that leader.”

Pence, meanwhile, has made numerous trips to early voting states like New Hampshire, Iowa and South Carolina. In his recent memoir and in speaking appearances, Pence boasts about the accomplishments of the Trump administration, including on the economy and the appointment of three Supreme Court justices. He has also detailed his break with Trump over the events of Jan. 6, 2021.

The former vice president told The Hill in an exclusive interview last week that he’ll continue to travel in the coming weeks and listen to the American public before making a decision about his future.

The Chapman flip also adds another chapter to one of the subplots of the Trump administration.

Trump in 2019 was forced to bat down rumors that he was considering replacing Pence as his vice president on the 2020 ticket with Haley in a bid to appeal to more female voters in particular. The idea had been publicly floated in a Wall Street Journal column.

Trump is the only candidate to announce their candidacy for the 2024 presidential contest. In addition to Pence and Haley, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) are believed to be weighing getting into the race.

Polls in recent months have shown Trump and DeSantis leading a hypothetical field of candidates.

Updated at 5:56 p.m.

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