Tim Scott Tapped for South Carolina Senate Seat

Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina on Monday appointed GOP Congressman Tim Scott to fill the seat vacated by outgoing Senator Jim DeMint. Scott, who takes office Jan. 3, will become the first black Senator from the South since 1881, as well as the only African-American in the chamber.

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Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina on Monday appointed GOP Congressman Tim Scott to fill the seat vacated by outgoing Senator Jim DeMint. Scott, who takes office Jan. 3, will become the first black Senator from the South since 1881, as well as the only African-American in the chamber.

“It is with great pleasure that I am announcing our next U.S. senator to be Congressman Tim Scott,” Haley said. “I am strongly convinced that the entire state understands that this is the right U.S. senator for our state and our country.”

Scott, 47, became a frontrunner for the post when DeMint announced his impending departure earlier in December. A favorite among both the GOP establishment and the Tea Party movement, Scott, 47, is a pro-life, pro-gun rights social conservative. His star has been on the rise since he arrived on Capitol Hill after winning election to the House in the Tea Party wave of 2010. In 2010, the 80-plus newly elected Republican members of Congress selected Scott as one of their two representatives to the Elected Leadership Committee. Last year House Majority Leader Eric Cantor told National Journal that Scott was “leadership personified,” and he was awarded a coveted speaking slot at the Republican convention in Tampa earlier this year.

Though his selection marks an important step for a party that has struggled to broaden its appeal beyond its white, rural base, Scott has steered clear of identity politics. He refused to join the Congressional Black Caucus, which will lose its only Republican member, Allen West, next year. “It is important to me, as a minority female, that Congressman Scott earned this seat,” Haley said. “He earned this seat for the person that he is. He earned this seat with the results he has shown.” Scott will be the seventh African-American senator, and the first black Republican senator since Edward Brooke, who served Massachusetts from 1967 to 1979.

Scott hails from the Palmetto State’s staunchly conservative 1st District, which stretches along along the southeastern coastline and includes both Charleston and Myrtle Beach. In 2010, he defeated councilman Paul Thurmond, son of segregationist Senator Strom Thurmond, to win the GOP’s congressional nomination. In November he won re-election with 65% of the vote. His ascension to the Senate may help the Republican Party rebrand itself after an election in which just 7% of African Americans backed Mitt Romney. The son of a single mother who worked as a nurse’s assistant, Scott clawed his way through high school and earned a partial football scholarship before becoming the wealthy part-owner of a real estate agency — the kind of bootstrapping personal narrative that conservatives believe can resonate with more middle and lower-class voters. In his remarks today, Scott praised his mom for his success. “I am thankful for a strong mom that understood that love sometimes comes at the end of a switch,” he said, according to the Washington Post.

Scott was reportedly the replacement preferred by DeMint, who announced this month he would leave office on Jan. 1 to become the president of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think-tank. The newly minted senator will run in a 2014 special election to determine who finishes the remainder of DeMint’s term, which expires in 2016. South Carolina’s senior Senator Lindsey Graham will also stand for re-election in 2014.

24 comments
samziam
samziam

What the GOP still hasn't come to grips with is that its race issue is far less about skin color or ethnicity and far more about its policies, actions and attitudes toward nonwhite racial and ethnic groups.  As long as its members continue catering to the lowest common denominator on the right, little will change.  Certainly, Tim Scott--a Tea Party favorite--will not resolve their dilemma.  This "historic" appointment is much ado about very little.

fhmadvocat
fhmadvocat

I have nothing against Tim Scott, but why is he more deserving after one term in Congress and I think one term as a city council person?  You mean that all those other Republicans who have been serving for more years than Congressman Scott are less deserving in consideration?  I find it ironic that Conservative Republicans who automatically claim any African-American appointed by Liberals as a benefactor of Affirmative Action can to the same thing and claim it wasn't Affirmative Action with a straight face.  If they want to claim it was because he was ideologically pure for the TPers and preferred by DeMint, well, at least I can buy that.

roknsteve
roknsteve

I think it's a win/win situation because we got rid of the Paulie/Kevin race war comments.

notsacredh
notsacredh

"I pulled the AP report off the site once we had one of our own to replace it with. It had nothing to do with censoring comments, which as you know we do not do."

.

That's why we love you folks.

jmac
jmac

Scott co-sponsored legislation to specifically prevent gun dealers from informing law enforcement at the Dept of Justice when an individual purchases multiple rifles or shotguns; wants those who declare bankruptcy not to have to declare their guns;  and thinks gun control should be done with a gun in each hand.  Good job, South Carolina.  

fitty_three
fitty_three

Even though wiped out everything with the other post, the question remains:

Why am I not surprised?

Pollopa
Pollopa

Time you are really makig it hard to keep this site as a preference for discussion.  Eradicating all comments is disrespectful and rude to your customers. I post, like and comment because of the quality of the commenters here at the Swamp. Time has provided a platform I would rank as the worst I participate in at this point  Get a clue and stop messing with your base.

bobell
bobell

Did TIME yank the comments, or was there a malfunction, or am I alone in being unable to access anything other than the 0 comments blank, into which I am typing this?

notsacredh
notsacredh

AfGuy, Friedlive is a mystery to me. Some of my posts show up, disappear and I can't figure out why. Other posts that I expect to be sent to moderation hell show up and stay. Go figure.

AfGuy
AfGuy

"It thad nothing to do with censoring comments, which as you know we do not do."

No, they leave that up to FriedLive... which it seems to do randomly but without apparent human intervention.

bobell
bobell

@jmac A uniquely timely appointment, I'd say.

Can the US secede from South Carolina?

DonQuixotic
DonQuixotic

@Pollopa 

Still no response from them each time we bring up these complaints.  The silence is deafening.

DonQuixotic
DonQuixotic

@bobell 

As long as Kevin and Paul's comments are gone, nothing will be missed.

samziam
samziam

@bobell @jmac It has been said of South Carolina--my native state--that it's too small to be a republic and too large to be an insane asylum.  Nothing has changed.

bobell
bobell

@DonQuixotic @Pollopa I know you guys posted before Alex responded, but let's be fair -- he did.  I miss some of our departed former regulars more than I mind the technicalities, but it's hard to blame Alex or Time for the departure of such as Stuart or PourMeCoffee (who has gone on to bigger things on Twitter).  And boy do I miss Ana Marie and KT.  But that's how it goes.

Still we soldier on.  I know things could be better -- but they can be and have been worse.  Let's be grateful for what we have. (Hey, 'tis the Season.)  It's not as if Time is required to indulge us.

bobell
bobell

I think I've figured it out.  They yanked the earlier posting, which wasn't by Alex Rogers, and replaced it with this one.  The entire posting is gone -- article, comments, and all.  I wonder whether it was because of the comments or just a case of subbing in their own staffer for what, as I recall, was an AP report.

Still, if the erasure gets rid of all those Groenhagen comments on you-know-what, it wasn't a total loss.

outsider
outsider

Thanks Alex!

@AlexAltman @bobell

bobell
bobell

@AlexAltman Thanks for responding and for the explanation, Alex.  We (at least the regulars) seem to be a resilient bunch.  We'll adapt. The freedom of commentary is what lured me as a participant to begin with, and it's good to have you confirm that that hasn't changed.  I can understand the swap of articles -- just got caught unaware, that's all.  And if we can't complain about the High Sheriffs, what is life for?  It's just that the vanished thread seemed to attract a particularly truculent set of comments even for Swampland. So it goes.

As for livefyre, now that the period of adjustment is over it's really neither better nor worse than Disqus and whatever preceded Disqus. Each has its own strengths and weaknesses, and we learn to live with them as they come and go. Things could be a lot worse.

If you'll hang in there with us, you know we'll hang in with you.

AlexAltman
AlexAltman

@bobell I pulled the AP report off the site once we had one of our own to replace it with. It had nothing to do with censoring comments, which as you know we do not do. Apologies for the lost comments, as well as for the snafus with the livefyre platform, which we are using across the website. I will convey your complaints to the powers that be, but unfortunately the issue is above my pay grade.