Well, that escalated quickly, as they say.
In a move that seems to have caught supporters and even the Senator’s own campaign staff by surprise, Tim Scott announced during a TV interview on Sunday night that his campaign for president was coming to an abrupt end:
Sen. Tim Scott announces that he is suspending his presidential campaign pic.twitter.com/oQ63MYvQTG
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) November 13, 2023
A wise move and some wise words. Tim Scott has a bright political future but going down to a bitter defeat in January against Donald Trump is a waste of his resources.
So, what happened? For a time, a very short time, the Tim Scott momentum seemed to be building, but it also faded quite quickly.
As with just about every decision to end a campaign, follow the money, according to NBC NEWS:
Scott started the 2024 campaign relatively little-known compared to some of his competitors. His campaign and an allied super PAC spent nearly $25 million on ads in Iowa and other early states promoting him as an optimistic conservative, according to AdImpact, an ad-tracking service. Scott saw an uptick in early-state polls soon through the summer.
But money started to grow tight leading up to Sunday’s dropout, according to a source familiar with the campaign. Scott never caught fire in the GOP debates. And his poll numbers stagnated as an in-state rival caught attention. He is dropping out of the race just as former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has pulled into second place in early-state primary polls.
The writing is on the wall. Unless something drastically changes, Donald Trump will be the nominee in 2024. Raising a few more million dollars or going into further campaign debt isn’t going to change that situation.
Scott is a very likable guy, maybe too likable in some respects for the presidential arena. He’d be a tremendous asset as a surrogate for any candidate moving forward given his soft-spoken relatableness on issues such as life and the economy. He never really broke through to the second tier, however, and continually sat behind Haley and DeSantis in consideration.
In Iowa, Scott was vying heavily for the evangelical voter lane often citing his faith and quoting scripture as his guiding principle on any given topic. That lane is rather full at the moment with Trump taking up most of the oxygen followed by DeSantis’ endless push to ingratiate himself with evangelical Iowa primary voters.
Nikki Haley, who appointed Scott to the U.S. Senate, had some kind parting words:
Tim Scott is a good man of faith and an inspiration to so many.
The Republican primary was made better by his participation in it.
South Carolina is blessed to continue to have him as our senator.
— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) November 13, 2023
Scott is one of those rare politicians that few people dislike even if they disagree with him.
The December debate stage is getting smaller. Who will be the next to drop? We’re looking at you, Chris Christie.