Tim Scott, Republican Jewish Coalition, Las Vegas, NV
Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) speaking at the Republican Jewish Coalition's 2023 Annual Leadership Summit in Las Vegas, NV. Photo credit: Gage Skidmore / Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED)

Tim Scott’s refusal to say whether he will accept the results of the 2024 election is a troubling sign of what the GOP has become: a party of bootlickers subservient to Donald Trump.

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There is a very good chance that Sen. Tim Scott (SC) only entered the race for the Republican presidential nomination so that he could later drop out, endorse Donald Trump, and then be chosen as the former president’s running mate. If Trump wins, Scott would then have an inside track to becoming the GOP nominee in 2028. 

It’s not a bad strategy and, so far, it has worked quite well for him. 

When he entered the field about a year ago, Scott received some fawning coverage, for example from The New York Times, which praised his “positive, aspirational message.” 

LOL, New York Times

He then proved that he is a prolific fundraiser, which will be a consideration when Trump chooses who will join him on the ticket.  

And then, long before a primary vote was cast, Scott dropped out in November, shocking even his staff.

Most importantly, the senator then refrained from criticizing Trump. Just take a look at this story from NBC entitled, “Tim Scott delivers his sharpest criticism yet of Trump over abortion comments,” which contains… barely any criticism at all.

Next, he endorsed the former president ahead of the New Hampshire primary in one of the more embarrassing moments in recent politics.

Scott is a great example of what has become of the GOP… and the sickness within the party. 

When asked a year ago on NBC whether he would “ever try to overturn an election [you] lost,” he emphatically responded “No.”

However, when you are trying to get on Trump’s good side, that’s just not enough. 

That is why Scott has changed his tune on the subject of accepting election results. 

On Sunday, once again appearing on NBC, he refused to say whether he would accept the outcome of the 2024 election when asked point blank multiple times. 

“The 47th president of the United States will be Donald Trump,” is all he said. 

You can read this one of two ways. 

The more sinister interpretation is that the GOP will try anything — perhaps even going beyond the 2020 coup attempt and the January 6 insurrection — to ensure their idol gets back to the White House. 

A more benign way to look at Scott’s refusal to answer the question is to assume that he is merely incredibly confident that, in a divided country in which every poll is within the margin of errors and in which Trump lost by more than 7 million votes last time around, he would prevail.

However, if that’s the case, what’s stopping Scott from simply saying that? What’s wrong with stating: “I believe that Donald Trump is the greatest human being in the history of the world and will win in a landslide. However, if he somehow does not, I will accept the outcome of the election.”

But, given a handful of chances, Scott couldn’t even do that.

The reason why is simple: If you want to be on the GOP ticket and stay on Trump’s good side, you have to give him a sense of confidence that, unlike Mike Pence, you will partake in the next coup if necessary. 

And Scott did just that.


  • Klaus Marre

    Klaus Marre is a writer, editor, former congressional reporter, and director of the WhoWhatWhy Mentor Apprentice Program. Follow him on Twitter @KlausMarre.

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