Tim Scott’s Not Taking the Bait

Insulted by the NAACP, overshadowed by Republican headliners, the senator from South Carolina still has little to say.

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 16: Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) answers questions as he arrives for a meeting of Senate Republicans on a solution for the pending budget and debt limit impasse at the U.S. Capitol October 16, 2013 in Washington, DC. The U.S. government shutdown is in its sixteenth day as the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives remain gridlocked on funding the federal government and the extending the nation's debt limit. 
National Journal
Beth Reinhard
Add to Briefcase
Beth Reinhard
Jan. 24, 2014, 12:34 p.m.

Tim Scott, the black Re­pub­lic­an ap­poin­ted to the Sen­ate by South Car­o­lina Gov. Nikki Haley, was singled out by the NAACP’s North Car­o­lina chapter pres­id­ent for, well, be­ing black and a Re­pub­lic­an. “A vent­ri­lo­quist can al­ways find a good dummy,” the Rev. Wil­li­am C. Barber II, told church­go­ers last week.

Asked about the in­sult on Fri­day, Scott took the high road. “The best way to re­spond to at­tacks from someone you’ve nev­er met, who’s nev­er been there dur­ing the most dif­fi­cult times of your life, is not to re­spond at all.”

His de­cision not to fight fire with fire is typ­ic­al of a low-key style that sets him apart from fiery tea-party brethren like Rand Paul, Marco Ru­bio, and Ted Cruz. While his fel­low Re­pub­lic­ans garnered na­tion­al me­dia at­ten­tion for sting­ing ap­prais­als of the gov­ern­ment’s “War on Poverty” earli­er this month, Scott’s speech on the Sen­ate floor went largely un­noticed.

“I don’t know that I’ve been quiet. I’ve spoken when I wanted to say something,” he said after ad­dress­ing a Re­pub­lic­an Na­tion­al Com­mit­tee meet­ing in Wash­ing­ton. “My thought is that just be­cause you have a lot of mi­cro­phones doesn’t mean you need to fill them all with words.”

That’s not a sen­ti­ment heard of­ten in a town of loud­mouths and grand­stand­ers. And Scott, who grew up poor with a single moth­er, has a unique per­spect­ive on what he calls “the op­por­tun­ity agenda.” He’s filed le­gis­la­tion to ex­pand school choice and job train­ing.

“I wouldn’t call him quiet. I would call him con­struct­ive,” said Matt Moore, chair­man of the South Car­o­lina Re­pub­lic­an Party.

Scott vis­its or Skypes with school­chil­dren about twice a month, and Moore ac­com­pan­ied him last year to his old high school in Char­le­ston. “When he was fin­ished the kids stood up and cheered for him even though they all come from Demo­crat­ic house­holds,” Moore said.

In his speech to the RNC, Scott urged Re­pub­lic­ans to of­fer solu­tions to help the needy. “We are go­ing to have to em­brace people in a way they de­serve to be em­braced,” he said. “If we win people, elec­tions will take care of them­selves.”

What We're Following See More »
HE LASTED SIX MONTHS
Sean Spicer Resigns
3 minutes ago
THE LATEST

He resigned this morning, "telling President Trump he vehemently disagreed with the appointment of New York financier Anthony Scaramucci as communications director." Per Politico, "chief of staff Reince Priebus and chief strategist Steve Bannon" were opposed to the appointment, while "Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn, and Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell" were supportive...Another White House official said Spicer was gracious while breaking the news of his departure, offered some praise for Scaramucci, while saying he would help with a transition."

Source:
STAFF IS PUSHING BACK
Trump Wants Scaramucci to Helm WH Communications
2 hours ago
THE LATEST

"President Trump is expected to announce that Wall Street financier Anthony Scaramucci will be White House communications director, according to two sources familiar with the planning. Trump has left the role open since Mike Dubke resigned in May, and the President has vented frequently to his friends about the performance of his press operation." According to NBC News, Steve Bannon and Reince Priebus are resisting the move.

Source:
NEW GALLUP POLL
Trump’s Approval Rating a Record Low at 6-Month Point
2 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"President Donald Trump's second-quarter job approval rating has fallen below what any other past president has gotten during the same time frame. A new Gallup poll found that Trump averaged a 38.8% rating between April 20 and July 19. The average approval rating for that time is 62%. President Obama was at the average during this time period, as was President Nixon. President Clinton is the only president who was below 50% by the second quarter, coming in with a 44% approval rating." There is also a large partisan gap. "Just 8% of Democrats approved of Trump's job performance during the second quarter, but 85% of Republicans did. Approval ratings have become increasingly polarized in recent administrations, but the 77-point gap for Trump is a new record."

Source:
ANNOUNCEMENT IMMINENT
Government to Bar Americans from Visiting N. Korea
2 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"The US government will soon prohibit American citizens from traveling to North Korea, according to two tour groups that cater to Western tourists who want to visit the secretive country. The US will announce the ban within a couple of days, said Simon Cockerell, general manager of Beijing-based Koryo Tours. The agency was informed of the development by officials of the Swedish government, which represents America's interests in North Korea, he told CNN."

Source:
NEA AND NEH GET $145 MIL EACH
House Appropriations Ignore Trump’s Proposed Arts Cuts
4 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"Federal arts and humanities programs targeted for elimination by the Trump administration would get a lifeline from House appropriators willing to ignore the president’s proposal and keep them running. The $31.5 billion fiscal 2018 Interior-Environment spending bill approved by the House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday includes $145 million for the National Endowment for the Arts. While that’s still a 3.2 percent cut from the fiscal year 2017 enacted level, it is more than $116 million above Trump’s budget request. The National Endowment for the Humanities would receive $145 million in fiscal 2018, which is $103.7 million above the White House budget request."

Source:
×
×

Welcome to National Journal!

You are currently accessing National Journal from IP access. Please login to access this feature. If you have any questions, please contact your Dedicated Advisor.

Login