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Tim Scott's bio raises Senate appeal
Politico ^ | 12/07/2012 | Kate Nocera and Seung Min Kim

Posted on 12/07/2012 12:35:22 PM PST by SeekAndFind

Rep. Tim Scott already brought a remarkable personal story to his first term in the House: a conservative black Republican, raised poor in the corner of South Carolina where the Civil War started.

But if the buzz in Washington and South Carolina is right, Scott might soon be the first African-American senator from the South since Reconstruction if Gov. Nikki Haley decides to appoint him to the seat vacated by Sen. Jim DeMint, who abruptly resigned Thursday to take a job running The Heritage Foundation.

It seems to be a logical fit: DeMint and Scott are close, personally and ideologically, and Scott has the conservative bona fides that are undoubtedly DeMint-approved. He’s risen in the House quickly since his election in 2010, serving on the powerful Rules Committee and working closely with GOP leadership as a liaison for the freshman class, while maintaining good relationships with the tea party wing of House Republicans.

At least for the moment, DeMint is staying mum on his preferred pick, saying he’ll leave the decision to Haley. Likewise, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said he isn’t going to speculate on who might join him in the upper chamber.

“Tim is a great guy. I don’t know what the governor is doing; it’s her call. Jim and I are going to talk among ourselves about that issue,” Graham said. “The good news for South Carolina is we’ve got a deep bench.”

Scott, along with fellow South Carolina GOP freshmen Trey Gowdy, Mick Mulvaney and Jeff Duncan, quickly became known as the “fab four,” or more ominously, “the four horsemen,” who came to Washington ready to shake things up. They’ve remained united on most issues and are all steadfastly conservative.

But Scott also has the kind of personal story that’s undoubtedly appealing to a party that’s trying to diversify its base: He worked his way out of poverty to become a successful small-business man, local politician and eventual congressman. If appointed, Scott would be the only black senator to currently serve in the chamber, and the first since Illinois Democrat Roland Burris left the Senate in 2010.

At the crux of his conservative beliefs is the idea that capitalism and hard work can help the poor move up the economic ladder. And he tells that story at every opportunity.

“As a poor kid growing up in a single-parent household in North Charleston, S.C., I felt like I didn’t have much going for me,” Scott said in a speech at the Republican National Convention this summer. “I did have a mom who believed in tough love, and that love comes at the end of a switch … and [a] small-business owner, who was my mentor, who taught me I could think my way out of poverty.”

Scott’s mentor taught him that “having a job is a good thing, but creating jobs was even better.”

South Carolina political consultant Taft Matney said any of the four GOP freshmen from the Palmetto State would be a good fit for the seat, but Scott in particular “would easily be able to carry Jim DeMint’s banner.”

“He’s a great speaker and a great leader,” Matney said. “And he has one of the most compelling stories.”

It’s Scott’s ability to articulate the case for conservatism among the poor that may put him ahead of the pack.

“He can say all the things Jim DeMint says, which when Jim says it can sound sometimes to the outside world as pretty harsh,” said Brent Nelsen, a political science professor at Furman University. “Tim says exactly the same things as Jim does, but he talks about his upbringing and the mentor who taught him the principles of making it in the world. He’s really credible as a conservative who has a heart for disadvantaged people.”

At least one of Scott’s in-state colleagues said he believes Scott is a leading contender. Gowdy cited several factors, including Scott’s legislative acumen, his background in business and his ability to be an effective liaison between House Republican leadership and the freshman class.

“With the possible exception of his mother, he does not have a bigger fan in the world than me,” Gowdy told POLITICO, adding: “He was a small-business man, and so he speaks with very solid credentials when he talks about the impact of either regulatory structure or tax structure.”

As for Scott’s role on the House Republican leadership team, Gowdy said Scott “threaded the needle beautifully” in making sure the GOP freshman class had a voice at the table, while still maintaining a good relationship with his party’s leaders.

“He has a very, very good relationship with leadership and the ability to thread that needle is tough,” Gowdy said. “South Carolina is a conservative state. You’re not always rewarded for being close to leadership.”

“Selfishly, he’s one of the few things that makes me enjoy serving in the House,” Gowdy said.

Others in the state have speculated that Scott might have different aspirations, such as running for governor or continuing to move up in House leadership. He was recently picked to serve on the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee.

For now, Scott — taking a cue from DeMint — is staying quiet about his future.

“Looking forward, Gov. Haley will now appoint a new senator, and I know she will make the right choice both for South Carolina and the nation,” he said in a statement Thursday.

Still, conservatives quickly jumped on board with a potential Sen. Tim Scott.

“About the only thing that could make this more awesome is if Gov. Nikki Haley ensures the Senate’s only black senator is a conservative Republican who presently represents the congressional district in which Ft. Sumter sits,” wrote Erick Erickson, editor-in-chief of

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: blackrepublicans; jimdemint; southcarolina; timscott

1 posted on 12/07/2012 12:35:31 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: SeekAndFind
A black conservative Republican in the Senate? I would love to see it.

2 posted on 12/07/2012 12:42:46 PM PST by Charles Henrickson (Conservative Republican.)
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To: SeekAndFind

OK how about THIS Gov Hailey appoints Mr Scott now and Let Rep Gowdy PRIMARY the HELL out of Ms Lindsey later. The Pop Popcorn and watch the FUN!

3 posted on 12/07/2012 12:43:49 PM PST by US Navy Vet (Go Packers! Go Rockies! Go Boston Bruins! See, I'm "Diverse"!)
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To: SeekAndFind

Would love to see Rep. Scott become US Senator however I would hate to see a good man like him become the target of the obvious liberal hatemongering. MSM will be calling him an “Uncle Tom” before Gov. Haley is finished announcing her pick. I predict MSNBC will go full bore racist with attacks that would make a KKK meeting look PC.

4 posted on 12/07/2012 12:48:35 PM PST by jakerobins
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To: SeekAndFind

What is his abortion position?

5 posted on 12/07/2012 12:52:57 PM PST by impimp
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To: SeekAndFind
We MUST support him because he is Black!

BTW, what are his positions??? Is he a Democrat or Republican? (Doesn't matter, I guess. The most important this is to prove I'm not racist!)

6 posted on 12/07/2012 12:59:11 PM PST by Cowboy Bob (Greed + Envy = Liberalism)
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To: impimp

Tim Scott’s positions on the issues as per Wikipedia:

Taxes and spending – Scott believes that federal spending and taxes should be reduced.

Health care – Scott believes the 2010 health care reform law should be repealed. Scott states that the health care in the U.S. is one of the greatest in the world, asserting that people all over the world come to study in American medical schools, waiting lists are rare, and Americans are able to choose their insurance, providers, and course of treatment.

Scott supports an alternative to the health care bill that he says keeps these benefits while controlling costs by reforming the medical tort system by having a limit on non-economic damages and by reforming Medicare.

Earmarks- Scott opposes earmarks.

Economic development - He supports infrastructure development and public works for his district believing it will improve the economy. He opposes restrictions on deepwater oil drilling.

Social issues – Scott describes himself as pro-life. Scott supports adult and cord blood stem cell research. He opposes embryonic stem cell research funded by taxpayers. He opposes the creation of human embryos for experimentation and opposes assisted suicide.

Immigration – Scott supports federal legislation that is similar to the Arizona law, Arizona SB 1070. He supports strengthening penalties for employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants. He also promotes cultural assimilation by making English the official language in the government, and by requiring new immigrants to learn English.
Labor –Scott has a pro-business orientation.

Foreign Policy -Scott advocates a continued military presence in Afghanistan and believes an early withdrawal will benefit Al-Qaeda. He also views Iran as the world’s most dangerous country and believes that the US should aid pro-democracy groups there.

Born Timothy Eugene Scott

September 19, 1965 (age 47)
Charleston, South Carolina, U.S.

Political party Republican

Residence Charleston

Alma mater Charleston Southern University

Profession Insurance agency owner, financial advisor, Real Estate

Religion Evangelical Christian


CAVEAT: I’d like to see him handle the question on : What to do when a woman who was raped gets pregnant? (THAT QUESTION *WILL* BE ASKED ).

7 posted on 12/07/2012 12:59:26 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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To: Cowboy Bob

RE: BTW, what are his positions???

See Post #7 above.

8 posted on 12/07/2012 1:01:51 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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