Election 2024

GOP candidate Tim Scott fights gay rumors by talking about girlfriend who he refuses to name

Tim Scott
Tim Scott Photo: Shutterstock

As the Republican primary heated up this summer with the first GOP presidential debate, competing state fair appearances and Donald Trump’s multiple criminal indictments, lagging White House hopeful Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) added one more qualification to his list of “presidential” attributes as he battles gay rumors: girlfriend.

“You can’t say I’m Black, because that would be terrible, so find something else that you can attack,” he insisted as he told everyone about his girlfriend who he will not name.

The 57-year-old never-married onetime insurance agent and Chick-fil-A intern, appointed to his Senate seat by Republican rival and former Gov. Nicki Haley in 2013, claims he “prayed on” asking the woman out not long before declaring his candidacy, after seeing a picture texted by a church friend.

But the very existence of the senator’s “girlfriend” is being called into question because Scott won’t reveal who she is, on or off the record.

“I have been very protective of my family and my loved ones,” Scott told the Washington Post in a recent interview devoted to the subject. “I signed up for this. If we make it, she will be signing up for it as well, but at least then she’ll know what she’s getting into. But until then, the only conversation I’m going to have about her in any form or fashion is right now.”

Scott went on to describe, in the presence of three campaign aides and security at the door to a hotel conference room, how he courted the woman: a dinner in Charleston sharing swordfish and steak, online Bible study, a game of pickleball.

Jennifer DeCasper, Scott’s close friend and also his campaign manager, offered she had met the woman at the zoo.

“I can’t imagine dragging her onto the campaign trail unless I have the intention of marrying her,” Scott said of the mystery girlfriend. “I hope that happens, to be honest with you.”

“I guess I should be careful about how I say that.”

Then he laughed. “Strike that comment.”

According the Post, Scott’s relationship status is up for debate among Republicans.

None other than Matt Schlapp, head of the Conservative Political Action Conference, who was accused last fall of unwanted groping by a male staffer on Herschel Walker’s Senate campaign, has joked that if Scott was chosen for the number two spot on a Republican ticket he’d be the first “gay vice-president.”

As well, Axios reported that top Republican donors and allies are privately pushing Scott’s campaign for more detail about his bachelor status before committing to support him.

Regardless of Scott’s relationship status or the rumors it’s fueling, like his fellow Senator from South Carolina Lindsay Graham, the junior senator holds an adamantly anti-LGBTQ+ voting record, with opposition to the Respect for Marriage Act, same-sex couples’ right to adopt, trans participation in school sports and LGBTQ+ employment protections.

Scott says the whispering campaign is just another form of discrimination, the kind he’s experienced his entire life.

“You can’t say I’m Black, because that would be terrible, so find something else that you can attack,” he reasoned.

Scott’s own friends, as well, seem to be in the dark about the senator’s intentions.

Brian Moniz, a close friend since childhood, was asked by the Post last month about who Scott was dating and said: “I am not aware of anyone at this time.”

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