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Thread: Nikki Haley to Appoint Rep. Tim Scott to Senate

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    Nikki Haley to Appoint Rep. Tim Scott to Senate

    His selection is little surprise, as his name quickly rose to the top of most people’s lists mere hours after DeMint announced he was going to resign. There are plenty of ambitious Republican politicians in South Carolina, but Scott made sense for the appointment for a whole host of reasons, including his close relationships with Haley and DeMint and his ties to both the conservative base and the party establishment.

    Scott’s new Senate seat will be up for a special election in 2014, when the final two years of DeMint’s term will be at stake, and in 2016, when a full six-year Senate term will be up. It remains quite possible that he could face primary opposition.
    Haley and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) will also be up for reelection in 2014, making it a huge year in the state’s politics. Scott’s House seat, meanwhile, will be up for grabs in a special election to be held in mid-2013.

    Scott was first elected to the House in 2010, winning an open seat after defeating the son of longtime Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.), the former segregationist who held the state’s other Senate seat for nearly 50 years until 2003.

    He will become just the seventh African-American to serve in the Senate and the first black senator from the South since the 1880s.
    Only three black senators have been voted into office by their constituents: Sen. Edward Brooke (R-Mass.), Sen. Carol Moseley Braun (D-Ill.) and now-President Barack Obama (D-Ill.). The others were elected by their state legislatures (before direct election of U.S. senators began) or appointed.

    Four other Republican were on Haley’s short list as of last week: Rep. Trey Gowdy, former state attorney general Henry McMaster, former state first lady Jenny Sanford and Haley appointee Catherine Templeton. Sanford notably is the ex-wife of former governor Mark Sanford (R), whose fast-rising political career was thwarted when he admitted to an affair with a woman in Argentina.
    For more on Scott, check out the National Journal’s profile of him from earlier this year. LINK
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