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Saturday, July 13, 2024

MURDOCK: Trump and Tim Scott Can Make America One Big Opportunity Zone

Stylistically, Scott would be the cream in Trump’s coffee. While some people find the former president a tad hot and strong, Scott is relaxed and soothing...

(Deroy Murdock, Headline USA) President Donald J. Trump should select U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., as his running mate.

Trump–Scott 2024 would be a juggernaut. Scott would serve Trump ably as vice president. He is well positioned to step in for Trump, should he become sidelined.

Long before any of that, this duo must get elected. Here, Scott looks uniquely promising.

A May 15-16 Harvard–Harris survey of 1,660 registered voters discovered that, among seven potential veep choices, Scott is the only one who makes Americans more likely to back Trump, by an additional 6%.

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., with 0%, does not move the needle. Gov. Doug Burgum, R–N.D. curbs enthusiasm for Trump by 6%.

Scott’s broad appeal—across the Palmetto State’s cities, suburbs, and rural towns—helps explain why he regularly outperforms other top statewide Republican contenders.

Tim Scott statewide ballots chart
Source: South Carolina Election Commission

In November 2014, U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham was re-elected with 54.3% of the vote. Gov. Nikki Haley scored a second term with 55.9% of the ballots. Scott bested them both, with 61.1%.

In 2016, Trump won the White House, partially thanks to 54.9% of South Carolina’s vote. That same Election Night, Scott won 60.6%.

And in 2022, Gov. Henry McMaster earned four more years with 58.0%. Sen. Scott that evening won six more years, with a 62.9% victory.

While Scott was a low-key presidential candidate, he has been one of Trump’s best surrogates. He is upbeat, energetic, informative, and persuasive.

Those qualities will serve Trump well on the hustings, via Scott’s debate with Kamala Harris, and as his chief advocate as 50th vice president of the United States.

Tim Scott’s experience in the House and Senate, his work as ranking Republican on the Senate Banking Committee, and author of the Opportunity Zones and related tax cuts that he has sponsored or endorsed make him the right man to help President Trump push the “Make America Great Again” agenda through Congress.

While South Carolina’s nine electoral votes have not gone Democrat since 1976, Scott could attract far more electoral votes elsewhere.

The mere presence of Tim Scott on the GOP ticket would consolidate the recent rightward shift of black voters. They are marching toward Trump in stunning numbers.

CNN data analyst Harry Enten was visibly shocked on June 17, when he discussed an aggregate of network polls that captured Trump’s swelling share of the black vote.

At this point in 2020, Trump had 7% of the black vote, before scoring 12% that November, according to exit surveys by Edison Research. Trump now has 21% support among black voters—triple his position in June 2020.

Meanwhile, excitement for Biden among black voters has vanished. Overall, he has plunged from 86% at this point in 2020 to 70% in 2024. With those age 50+, he has slid from 83% to 74%. Biden has collapsed among blacks under 50, from 80% to 37%.

Scott would solidify and enhance the 20% or so of the black vote that consistently has backed Trump in polls since last fall.

Trump–Scott could secure 25% of the black vote; 35% no longer seems beyond imagination. If that many black Americans also vote GOP down ballot, Republicans should keep the House and capture the Senate from New York’s Chuck Schumer and the Biden Democrats.

Stylistically, Scott would be the cream in Trump’s coffee. While some people find the former president a tad hot and strong, Scott is relaxed and soothing. Stirred together, these two would make a fine blend, and complement each other—as running mates and governing partners should.

Given his personal integrity, legislative experience, increasingly polished rhetorical skills, and everything he will gain while riding shotgun to Trump, Tim Scott will make a suitable successor to the 45th/47th POTUS.

America’s future will be quite bright, indeed, if, on Jan. 20, 2029, President Donald J. Trump hands the keys to the White House to President-elect Tim Scott.

Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor.

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