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Gov. Nikki Haley Promises Quick, Thoughtful Decision on Senate Seat

1:13 PM, Dec 7, 2012   |    comments
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Nikki Haley (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Columbia, SC (WLTX) - South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley is promising to make a thoughtful selection to replace Sen. Jim DeMint--but also to make her pick quickly.

Haley released a statement on Friday morning on her thinking as she ponders who will take over for DeMint.

DeMint surprised the political world Thursday when he said he would resign from the Senate so he could be the new leader of the Heritage Founation, a conservative thinktank. Related coverage: Politicans React to DeMint Decision |

"Appointing a new member of the U.S. Senate is a solemn duty, and I take this responsibility with utmost seriousness," Haley said in her statement. "I will make this decision in a manner that is thoughtful and dignified, but also quickly."

Since DeMint's announcement, there's been rampant speculation in the media and among pundits about who Haley would select to succeed the retiring senator. Names like Rep. Tim Scott, Rep. Mick Mulvaney, Henry McMaster, and David Wilkins have been talked about as possibilities.

Haley, though, isn't tipping her hand--although she is ruling herself out as an option.

"I want to make two things clear from the outset. Number one, I will not take the appointment myself. Number two, I will appoint a person who has the same philosophy of government that Jim DeMint and I share.

Here is Haley's full statement:

"Appointing a new member of the U.S. Senate is a solemn duty, and I take this responsibility with utmost seriousness. I will make this decision in a manner that is thoughtful and dignified, but also quickly.

"I want to make two things clear from the outset. Number one, I will not take the appointment myself. Number two, I will appoint a person who has the same philosophy of government that Jim DeMint and I share.

"With all the challenges we face as a state and nation, it is essential that the next senator from South Carolina be dedicated to the principles that our state most values."

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