Tim Scott picked to replace Jim DeMint
Republican Gov. Nikki Haley Monday gave conservatives Rep. Tim Scott to fill the seat of soon-to-be former Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.). Scott, a hero to the “tea party” movement in the Palmetto State, is one of only two black Republicans in the House.
Just re-elected to his second term in the House, Scott (lifetime American Conservative Union rating: 96 percent) will now become the first black Republican senator since Edward Brooke of Massachusetts (1966-78) and the first black GOPer from the Deep South to serve in the Senate since Reconstruction.
Of course, we now have to deal with this:
But, as dramatic as Scott’s appointment is, it nonetheless creates other problems for the Republican Party. Coupled with the defeat of fellow GOP Rep. Allen West in Florida this year, Scott’s exodus from the House leaves it with no black Republicans. In addition, his pending resignation from the House will trigger a special election in the Charleston-based 1st District that Democrats will seriously contest.
At the end of the day, however, Senate seats are higher profile and the terms last longer, so Scott has a real opportunity to make a mark.