Republican Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina officially announced his 2024 presidential campaign. As he prepares to take on former President Donald Trump and potentially Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, he contends President Joe Biden’s damage to America and weakness prompted him to enter the race.
“I am living proof that America is the land of opportunity, not a land of oppression,” said Scott on Monday at his campaign declaration at Charleston Southern University in South Carolina, his alma mater. “This isn’t just my story. It’s all of our stories.”
Senator Scott lauded the American dream “where obstacles became opportunities.”
“Joe Biden and the radical left are attacking every rung of the ladder that helped me climb,” Scott continued. “And that is why I am announcing today that I am running for president of the United States of America.”
“They’re attacking our American values; our schools; our economy; our security. But not on my watch. That will not work. …I cannot stand by while this is done to America. She’s done too much for me.”
Scott is the only Black GOP senator. Last week, he made his candidacy official with the Federal Election Commission. He also requested a 90-day extension to get his personal financial disclosures in front of the Senate.
The senator’s speech contrasted with Trump, who denounced a “nation in decline” in his rally speeches and framed it as a “nation in retreat” under President Biden.
Instead, Scott claimed, “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. The good news is all we need to do is turn around,” Scott continued.
Scott outlined the main focuses of his campaign
During his announcement, Senator Scott outlined the critical issues of his campaign. They included: Being beholden to China; global instability; turning away from the culture war and critical race theory; securing borders; “Back the Blue,” supporting police and law and order; rebuilding the “lethal” military to project strength and excessive spending and debt.
“We will not try to be the world’s police force, but we will always defend our vital national interests and our people,” continued Scott. “And we will win the next century by the strength of our economy. China started this new economic Cold War, but America will finish it.”
Scott will continue to have a significant voice, as he has for several years, on race, culture wars waged by the left, policing, and CRT.
“America cannot be safe or secure if we sink into cultural quicksand here at home,” said Scott. “As president, I will rebuild and restore every rung of the ladder that helped me climb because I want my American story to be pale in comparison to your stories.”
“As president, I will motivate, inspire, and require every able-bodied citizen to take responsibility and go to work. We will back the blue, secure our streets, and finally make it a federal crime to kill, ambush, or assault a cop in this country,” continued Scott.
The senator must find a way to stand out in a field led by former President Trump and DeSantis, who is expected to announce his presidential bid later this week.
However, Scott’s senior advisers note that Scott hopes to make his mark by leaning more into optimistic rhetoric than his rivals. With his Christian faith an essential part of his personal and political story, Scott quotes scripture at his campaign events and weaves his reliance on spiritual guidance into his speeches.
Senator Scott’s political team points to his most recent reelection to the Senate as a political strength, when he defeated his Democrat opponents by over 20 percentage points. The overwhelming support in an early-voting state in the GOP presidential nominating calendar could bode well for Scott’s electability on a larger scale.