Republican Senator of South Carolina Tim Scott is set to deliver the Republicans’ rebuttal to President Joe Biden’s address to Congress next week.
In a statement announcing the decision, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said, “Senator Tim Scott is not just one of the strongest leaders in our Senate Republican Conference. He is one of the most inspiring and unifying leaders in our nation … As Sen. Scott likes to say, he is living his mother’s American dream, and he has dedicated his career to creating more opportunity for our fellow citizens who need it most.”
On Twitter, McConnell wrote that Sen. Scott “is not just one of the strongest leaders in the Senate. He is one of the most inspiring and unifying leaders in our nation. I’m glad he’ll be delivering the Republican Address following the President’s remarks on Wednesday.”
“We face serious challenges on multiple fronts, but I am as confident as I have ever been in the promise and potential of America,” Scott said in a statement. “I look forward to having an honest conversation with the American people and sharing Republicans’ optimistic vision for expanding opportunity and empowering working families.”
At the virtual Republican National Convention last year, Scott inspired viewers with his family’s success story. “Our family went from cotton to Congress in one lifetime,” said Scott, who’s routinely maligned for being a black Republican. “And that’s why I believe the next American century can be better than the last.”
“Do we want a society that breeds success, or a culture that cancels everything it even slightly disagrees with?” Scott continued in his remarks. “I know where I stand, because you see, I am living my mother’s American Dream.”
“My parents divorced when I was 7 years old,” Scott went on. “We lived in a two-bedroom house with my grandparents; me, my mom, and my brother sharing a room and a bed. My mom worked 16 hours a day to keep food on the table and a roof over our heads. She knew that if we could find the opportunity, bigger things would come.”
Last summer, Scott led the push for a comprehensive police reform bill that would create a national “enhanced use-of-force database, pursue restrictions on chokeholds and create new commissions to study law enforcement and race,” Fox News reported. However, Democrats blocked the legislation.
On Tuesday, Scott released a statement on the verdict in the George Floyd case in which a jury found former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin guilty of three charges relating to the death of Floyd.
Scott’s statement reads:
“George Floyd died because Derek Chauvin kneeled on his neck and stopped him from breathing for more than nine minutes. There is no question in my mind that the jury reached the right verdict,” said Senator Scott. “While this outcome should give us renewed confidence in the integrity of our justice system, we know there is more work to be done to ensure the bad apples do not define all officers—the vast majority of whom put on the uniform each day with integrity and servant hearts. We must all come together to help repair the tenuous relationship between law enforcement and Black and minority Americans.”
“To deny the progress we’ve made is just as damaging as not making progress at all. I urge people across this nation to peacefully make their voices heard and engage in conversations that will continue to move us toward a more just America. I believe in the goodness of our country; we can and will do better.”
Scott plans to reintroduce his previous bill or a similar measure in the next few weeks. As reported by Vox, he said that he has talked about a possible compromise with Representative Karen Bass (D-CA) and Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ).