It’s a new day in South Carolina and Rep. Tim Scott, a Republican, is probably having the best one ever right now.
Gov. Nikki Haley appointed Scott on Monday to fill the seat that will be vacated next month by outgoing GOP Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC). The appointment is historic because Scott will be the sole African-American serving in the Senate. He will break an over 30-year run of no black conservatives in the lawmaking body. No blacks senators from the South have served in the U.S. Senate since Reconstruction.
So, the African-American community should celebrate this achievement because it’s not everyday that it happens. Right? Trust, however, that this news will not make as many headlines or get much applause for a few reasons.
First, Scott is a Tea Party conservative — a title that very few in the African-American community hold. He currently represents the area in and around Charleston, SC in one of the most conservative states in the country.
Scott is also against many mainstream ideas. He wanted to do (or did) the following, according to Democratic Underground:
- Give more money to big oil companies
- Cut funding to HIV/AIDS support in South Carolina as a state lawmaker
- Impeach Pres. Obama because of the lack of resolution during the 2011 debt ceiling fight
- Propose a bill to cut off food stamps if any family member went on strike against their employer
- Believes we should not have gun regulation … AT ALL. (Let that one sink in).
Scott’s diversity is welcome in the U.S. Senate, but his ideals leave a lot to be desired (for me). He received a hell of a promotion today. Let’s at least celebrate the fact that someone of color was considered for the position. I already know, however, that Senate watchers will be all over Scott’s record in the coming months — as they should be.
After the Connecticut tragedy, I hope Scott will reconsider his position on gun control. But, if his votes are owned by the NRA, I doubt we will see that.