Sen. Tim Scott was tapped to offer the Republican response to President Biden’s first address to a joint session of Congress, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy announced on Thursday.

Scott, of South Carolina, the only black Republican in the upper chamber, has been seen as a rising star in the party and potential contender to run for the GOP presidential nomination for 2024.

The South Carolina Republican is looking forward to discussing the party’s “optimistic vision” for the future Wednesday night.

“We face serious challenges on multiple fronts, but I am as confident as I have ever been in the promise and potential of America. I look forward to having an honest conversation with the American people and sharing Republicans’ optimistic vision for expanding opportunity and empowering working families,” Scott said.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he’s in full support of Tim Scott speaking after President Biden’s address. Andrew Harnik/AP

His rebuttal to Biden’s upcoming speech comes as Republicans look to navigate where the party should head in a post-Trump period.

“We face serious challenges on multiple fronts, but I am as confident as I have ever been in the promise and potential of America. I look forward to having an honest conversation with the American people and sharing Republicans’ optimistic vision for expanding opportunity and empowering working families,” Scott said.

Top Republicans touted Scott as a leader who is well suited to deliver the GOP’s vision.

“@SenatorTimScott is not just one of the strongest leaders in the Senate. He is one of the most inspiring and unifying leaders in our nation. I’m glad he’ll be delivering the Republican Address following the President’s remarks on Wednesday,” McConnell tweeted.

McCarthy echoed McConnell’s sentiment, praising him as a unifier within the party.

I couldn’t be more proud as a friend, as a Republican, and as an American to have @SenatorTimScott deliver the Republican response to President Biden’s address next week. He is a conservative optimist with the right vision for a stronger, more united country,” he tweeted.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy speaks during his weekly press briefing on Capitol Hill.Andrew Harnik/AP

And Senate Republican Conference Chairman John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) said Scott is a “strong voice in our party” who can articulate the contrast between the party’s policy differences.

“He is helping lead the fight against the radical, dangerous, and scary liberal policies we are seeing from this White House. He is standing against the tidal wave of spending that is financing it.” he said in a statement.

“President Biden’s first one hundred days have shown a lack of leadership and a lack of faith in our country. Republicans have a better vision for America—one of freedom, health, and prosperity for all. I look forward to hearing Senator Scott articulate that vision next week.”

Sen. John Barrasso was among the Republican members of Congress to speak highly of Tim Scott.Greg Nash/Pool via AP

The joint address, which is not considered an official State of the Union until a president’s second year in office, is slated to take place on April 28.



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