U.S. Senator Tim Scott has announced his bid for the 2024 presidential race.
A figure revered for his uplifting message of unity, the senator from South Carolina, who had humble beginnings as the son of a single mother in an impoverished neighborhood, hopes to offer an alternative to the party’s more confrontational contenders, including former President Donald Trump and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.
Scott’s candidacy is a notable deviation from the norm, with the Senator being a Black conservative in a country where racial divisions often dictate political alliances, a Reuters report highlights.
In the 2020 presidential election, 92% of Black voters supported Democrat Joe Biden, while Trump secured 55% of the white votes.
Despite sharing his experiences of racial prejudice, Scott firmly holds that America is not a fundamentally racist country.
He hasn’t backed down from criticizing Democrats for exploiting racial tensions to further their political agenda.
Entering the presidential race, Scott is seen as an underdog, with polling averages showing only about 2% of Republicans planning to vote for him in the primary, according to Reuters.
Scott enjoys widespread popularity and support in his home state, South Carolina, which is significant in the Republican nomination race as it’s the third state to vote.
He’s donors like Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison, who is expected to continue supporting Scott.
Scott’s persona of a “compassionate conservative” differentiates him from his peers, Reuters notes.
His journey from a struggling student working at a fast-food franchise at the age of 13 to a successful insurance and real estate professional before venturing into politics serves as an inspiration.
His initiatives, like the creation of “opportunity zones” for disadvantaged communities and a tax credit program for low-income families with children, speak to his compassionate side.
Interestingly, Scott’s presidential bid puts him against Nikki Haley, former South Carolina governor, who announced her campaign in February.
As natives of South Carolina appealing to a similar support base, both Scott and Haley’s chances hinge on winning their home state.