South Carolina's Republican mud-wrestling: 'ragheads' and affairs South Carolina's Republican party in-fighting gets nasty, with outlandish racist and sexist slurs against a woman candidate South Carolina's Republican mud-wrestling: 'ragheads' and affairs | Richard Adams | World news | guardian.co.uk Nikki Haley's latest ad: 'I've seen the dark side of our state's politics.' You bet. In the bizarre competition taking place between Arizona, Alabama and South Carolina over which US state has the craziest politicians, it's the Palmetto State that is still the clear leader after another week of internecine soap opera. Nikki Haley is an Indian-American from a family of Sikh immigrants, and the only woman running for the Republican nomination to be South Carolina's next governor. Since this is South Carolina, she has now been accused by two men of having affairs and was last night denounced by another Republican as being a "raghead" and foreign agent. Republican state senator Jake Knotts went on a local politics chatshow on Thursday night and called Haley a "raghead", and at least once "a f#!king raghead," according to one local newspaper report. Haley's full name is Nimrata Nikki Randhawa Haley, and she is the child of Indian immigrants who happen to be Sikh. She converted to become a Methodist. Here's Knotts's comments, courtesy of South Carolina's Free Times:Knotts says he believed Haley has been set up by a network of Sikhs and was programmed to run for governor of South Carolina by outside influences in foreign countries. He claims she is hiding her religion and he wants the voters to know about it. "We got a raghead in Washington; we don't need one in South Carolina," Knotts said more than once. "She's a raghead that's ashamed of her religion trying to hid it behind being Methodist for political reasons." ... "We need a good Christian to be our governor," he said. "She's hiding her religion. She ought to be proud of it. I'm proud of my god." Knotts says he believes Haley's father has been sending letters to India saying that Haley is the first Sikh running for high office in America. He says her father walks around Lexington wearing a turban. "We're at war over there," Knotts said. Asked to clarify, he said he did not mean the United States was at war with India, but was at war with "foreign countries." Knotts later apologised: "My raghead comments about Obama and Haley were intended in jest," he said in a statement. "Bear in mind that this is a freewheeling, anything-goes internet radio show that is broadcast from a pub. It's like a local political version of Saturday Night Live. Since my intended humorous context was lost in translation, I apologise. I still believe Ms Haley is pretending to be someone she is not, much as Obama did, but I apologise to both for an unintended slur." And that's not even the worst thing said about Haley. Last week, a South Carolina politics blogger claimed he had an affair with her. Then this week another leading candidate, Andre Bauer, fired a staff member for "inappropriate behaviour" that also turned out to be ... having an affair with Nikki Haley. Haley denies both claims pointblank. So far, neither man has produced any evidence. Bauer wants her to take a lie detector test ... really, could this get any sillier? Frankly, I hope Haley wins, to prove a point to the Neanderthals of South Carolina.