Conservative Tim Scott won the Republican nomination for the 1st Congressional District in South Carolina Tuesday night. A poetic irony of his victory was that he resoundingly defeated Paul Thurmond, son of the late Strom Thurmond who began his political career running on a segregationist platform. Facing a weak Democrat opponent in Ben Frasier this November, Scott is a virtual certainty to become the first black Republican in Congress since J.C. Watts was elected in 2003.
Perhaps even more important in this particular primary was the fact that yet again the more conservative candidate defeated the GOP-supported moderate. Scott, who campaigned on issues of government spending transparency, lower taxation and a strong pro-life position swamped Thurmond by an almost 2-to-1 margin. Scott also voiced strong support for Israel during the flotilla incident earlier this month.
Electoral victories such as this one continue to smash the malicious liberal template that opposition to Obama is rooted in race. Candidates like Tim Scott are winning against establishment candidates because of principled conservatism and South Carolinian voters demonstrated that race is not a factor. Whether or not the GOP takes back a majority in Congress this November, the Republicans that go to Washington next year will likely be a much different group that we see there today.