Sen. Tim Scott formally announces 2024 presidential bid

Published: May. 22, 2023 at 5:42 AM EDT|Updated: May. 22, 2023 at 6:31 PM EDT
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NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WMBF/AP) – Another big name in South Carolina politics is throwing his name in the race for the White House.

The Associated Press reported Friday that Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) filed paperwork to enter the 2024 Republican presidential race. He made the announcement official Monday in North Charleston at Charleston Southern University, his alma mater and hometown.

Scott’s announcement speech reads as follows:

“We live in the land where it is possible for a kid raised in poverty by a single mother in a small apartment to one day serve in the People’s House and maybe even the White House.

This is the greatest country on God’s green Earth.

My momma worked 16-hour days as a nurse’s aide — changing bedpans and rolling patients.

It was hard work. It was not glamorous.

But those 16-hour days put food on our table. And kept our lights on. They empowered her to move her boys out of a place filled with anger into a home full of love.

My mom’s work ethic taught me there is dignity in all work.

Our nation, our values, and our people are strong. But our President is weak.

America is not a nation in decline.

But under Joe Biden, we have become a nation in retreat. Retreating from our heritage and our history. Retreating from personal responsibility and hard work. Retreating from strength and security. Even retreating from religious liberty and the worship of God himself.

They say opportunity in America is a myth and faith in America is a fraud. But the truth of my life disproves their lies!

We are not in decline. We’re in a Biden retreat.

This is the freest and fairest land. Where you and I can go as high as our character, our grit, and our talent will take us. I bear witness to that. I testify to that. That’s why I’m the candidate the far left fears the most.

When I cut your taxes, they called me a prop. When I re-funded the police, they called me a token. When I pushed back on President Biden, they even called me the N-word.

I disrupt their narrative. I threaten their control. The truth of my life disproves their lies!

Our party and our nation are standing at a time for choosing.

Victimhood or victory?

Grievance or greatness?

I choose freedom and hope and opportunity.”

Scott started his political career with the Charleston City Council before moving to the South Carolina House of Representatives, the U.S. House of Representatives and was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2013.

On many issues, Scott aligns with mainstream GOP positions. He wants to reduce government spending and restrict abortion, saying he would sign a federal law to prohibit abortions after 15 weeks of pregnancy if elected president.

One of his signature legislations while in Washington was creating Opportunity Zones, which was passed as part of the 2017 tax reform package, in order to help bring private investments to distressed communities across the country.

But Scott has pushed the party on some policing overhaul measures since the killing of George Floyd, and he has occasionally criticized Trump’s response to racial tensions. Throughout their disagreements, though, Scott has maintained a generally cordial relationship with Trump, saying in his book that the former president “listened intently” to his viewpoints on race-related issues.

Democratic National Committee Chair Jaime Harrison released the following statement in response to Senator Tim Scott’s 2024 announcement:

“Tim Scott wants to govern from the ‘far, conservative right’ as a proud member of the Tea Party, and his extreme record proves it. Even before he refused to name a policy difference with Trump, Scott was a fierce advocate of the MAGA agenda – supporting national abortion bans and championing plans to end Medicare and Social Security as we know them. As an ‘architect’ of Trump’s tax law, Scott gifted corporations billions and has been a longtime champion of rolling back regulations on big banks.

There’s no question that special interests are celebrating as Tim Scott throws his hat into the 2024 race for the MAGA base.”

Scott formed an exploratory committee last month which allowed him to raise and spend money while he weighed a White House campaign.

Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley is also running in hopes of getting the Republican nomination.

RELATED COVERAGE | ‘May the best woman win’: Nikki Haley announces 2024 GOP presidential run

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