Haley wins S.C. runoff against Rep. Barrett

Nikki Haley won the runoff in the South Carolina Republican gubernatorial primary Tuesday.

She took 63 percent of the vote, defeating Rep. Gresham Barrett (R-S.C.) who got 37 percent, according to unofficial results. The Associated Press called the race for Haley with less than half the precincts reporting.

If she wins the general election, she would be the first female governor of South Carolina.

The Republican Governors Association called her win "historic."

“We look forward to working with Nikki Haley and her campaign to ensure that she earns a tremendous and well-deserved victory in November," RGA executive director Nick Ayers said in a statement.

Haley was forced into a runoff after she failed to break 50 percent in the June 8 South Carolina gubernatorial primary. She took 49 percent, while Barrett was second with 22 percent.
 
Haley remained the frontrunner in the race even despite being dogged by claims she was unfaithful to her husband of 13 years. Conservative blogger Will Folks claimed he had an affair with the state representative, as did a Republican consultant working for primary rival Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer's campaign.
 
Haley vehemently denied both allegations.
 
Shortly before the June 8 vote, Bauer announced he had passed a lie-detector test that he said confirmed he didn’t have any involvement in the efforts to slime Haley.
 
Haley also faced an old-fashioned South Carolina whisper campaign about her conversion from Sikhism to Christianity. She was born in Bamberg, S.C., the daughter of Indian immigrants.
 
Haley was boosted by the endorsement of Sarah Palin, who flew to South Carolina to campaign with her. Jenny Sanford, the former wife of retiring Gov. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), also endorsed Haley. Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney endorsed Haley and appeared with her during the runoff campaign.
 
She faces state Sen. Vincent Sheheen (D) in November.

— Updated at 8:34 p.m.