Nikki Haley Resigns From Boeing Board Over Airlines Bailout

March 20, 2020 Updated: March 21, 2020
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COLUMBIA, S.C.—Former U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley has resigned from the board of Boeing Co., cutting ties with a company she long supported as South Carolina governor because of her opposition to a bailout of the airplane manufacturer that is in the works amid the outbreak of the CCP virus.

The Epoch Times refers to the novel coronavirus, which causes the disease COVID-19, as the CCP virus because the Chinese Communist Party’s coverup and mismanagement allowed the virus to spread throughout China and create a global pandemic.

“I strongly believe that when one is part of a team, and one cannot in good faith support the direction of the team, then the proper thing to do is to resign,” Haley wrote to Boeing CEO Dave Calhoun and board chairman Larry Kellner in a letter dated March 16 announcing her departure from the board.

The letter was provided Thursday to The Associated Press.

Earlier this week, Boeing said it was seeking $60 billion in “public and private liquidity” for the aerospace industry, which is struggling amid a COVID-19 outbreak that has halted major travel and shuttered many businesses.

The Trump administration has said it would back Boeing, which is also a top U.S. defense contractor.

Haley, 48, joined the Boeing board last year after her departure from the Trump administration. Haley, popular in her home state, moved back to South Carolina—where Boeing has a major production facility—founded a nonprofit organization, and wrote and promoted a memoir.

As governor of South Carolina prior to joining the Trump administration, Haley fought attempts by unions to represent workers at the North Charleston plant where the company assembles its Boeing 787 jetliners. At the time, she said unions weren’t needed because companies in her state take care of their workers.

In 2017, workers at the plant voted about 3-to-1 against representation by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, a resounding setback for unions that have long hoped to make inroads in the South.

Boeing is among the companies whose stocks are tumbling amid the COVID-19 outbreak. Earlier this month, the Chicago-based company said it had imposed a hiring freeze in response to the virus outbreak, which is undercutting air travel and threatening to kill airlines’ appetite for new planes.

By Meg Kinnard