Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The New Guy

South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) has appointed Rep. Tim Scott to fill out the remainder of Sen. Jim DeMint’s term in the U.S. Senate.  Mr. DeMint, you’ll recall, announced his resignation recently so he could go run the Heritage Foundation and turn it into a Tea Party enclave.  I’m sure the fact that the previous president of the foundation raked in over $1 million in salary versus the paltry six figures earned by a senator had absolutely nothing to do with it.

As ThinkProgress notes, Mr. Scott’s views on issues are virtually the same as Mr. DeMint’s, and in his brief career in the House — he was first elected in 2010 — he has made some interesting news:

Proposed a bill to cut off food stamps for entire families if one member went on strike. One of the most anti-union members of Congress, Scott proposed a bill two months after entering Congress in 2011 to kick families off food stamps if one adult were participating in a strike. Scott’s legislation made no exception for children or other dependents.

Wanted to spend an unlimited amount of money to display Ten Commandments outside county building. When Scott was on the Charleston County Council, one of his primary issues was displaying the Ten Commandments outside the Council building. According to the Augusta Chronicle, Scott said the display “would remind council members and speakers the moral absolutes they should follow.” When he was sued for violating the Constitution and a Circuit Judge’s orders, Scott was nonplussed: “Whatever it costs in the pursuit of this goal (of displaying the Commandments) is worth it.”

He also doesn’t care much for President Obama.

Scott has the fervent anti-Obama record demanded by the far right. On Sean Hannity’s Fox News show, Scott said, “This president has consistently found himself on the wrong side of the concept of the rule of law.” He claimed, “It’s a liberal media bias that insulates this president from having to explain the truth to any American citizen about the things that go wrong in this government.”

Mr. Scott is the first African-American senator from the South since Reconstruction.  Republicans are saying that this is a major step forward for them in terms of “minority outreach,” which means that they think that just because Mr. Scott is black, he will attract voters of color because, y’know, that’s all that matters to them.

If this is their idea of “minority outreach,” they’ve got a long, long way to go.

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