Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) has been tapped to deliver the Republican Party’s response following Joe Biden’s first speech to a joint session of Congress on April 28th, according to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA).
“Senator Tim Scott is not just one of the strongest leaders in our Senate Republican Conference. He is one of the most inspiring and unifying leaders in our nation,” Senator McConnell said in a statement. “As Sen. Scott likes to say, he is living his mother’s American dream, and he has dedicated his career to creating more opportunity for our fellow citizens who need it most.”
“Nobody is better at communicating why far-left policies fail working Americans. Senate Republicans are looking forward to this address from our distinguished colleague,” McConnell added.
Biden is scheduled to address both chambers of Congress on his 98th day in office, much later than his recent presidential predecessors delivered their first speech. The speech will take place in the House chamber with social distancing and safety protocols in place due to the coronavirus pandemic, Fox News reported.
“I’m excited and honored for this opportunity to address the nation,” Senator Scott said. “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.”
Senator Mitch McConnell also tweeted on Thursday, “Senator Tim Scott 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.” Continued Below
Responding to McConnell’s tweet, Scott replied, “Honored to have this opportunity. I’m as confident as I’ve ever been in the promise and potential of America and look forward to sharing my vision for our nation with all of you.”
A limited number of lawmakers are expected to be allowed to attend the speech in person due to the COVID-19 protocols. Earlier this week, several House GOP lawmakers called on Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., to postpone the speech and allow more people to attend, Fox News reported.
The minority party traditionally delivers a rebuttal whenever the president makes a speech to Congress. When former President Donald Trump delivered his final “State of the Union” address in February 2020, Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer (D) delivered her party’s response. Continued Below
Senator Tim Scott’s tweet:
Honored to have this opportunity. I’m as confident as I’ve ever been in the promise and potential of America and look forward to sharing my vision for our nation with all of you. https://t.co/M6Pt8kQEuB
— Tim Scott (@SenatorTimScott) April 22, 2021
Rep. Kevin McCarthy also said in a statement on Thursday, “I couldn’t be more proud as a friend, as a Republican, and as an American to have [Senator Tim Scott] 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.”
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.
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) April 22, 2021
Other lawmakers also praised the decision over Senator Scott delivering the GOP’s rebuttal:
.@SenatorTimScott is a champion of conservative values & building economic opportunities for every American. He’s a rock-solid choice to deliver the Republican response to President Biden, who I expect will call for even more irresponsible spending & nanny-state policies. https://t.co/HauyzRqdYz
— Senator John Thune (@SenJohnThune) April 22, 2021
I'm glad to see that my friend @SenatorTimScott will provide the Republican response following @POTUS's Address to Congress. I look forward to him showing the American people how Republicans are working every day to move our nation forward and preserve the American Dream. https://t.co/SOttwW6RxW
— Rick Scott (@SenRickScott) April 22, 2021
.@SenatorTimScott is helping lead the fight against the Biden administration’s radical, dangerous & liberal policies. Republicans have a better vision for America—one of freedom, health, & prosperity for all. I look forward to hearing Sen. Scott articulate that vision next week. https://t.co/sOODTymjnK
— Sen. John Barrasso (@SenJohnBarrasso) April 22, 2021