Republican Sen. Tim Scott’s presidential campaign got a huge boost within hours of its launch — as the world’s highest-profile billionaire praised the South Carolina senator’s message of personal responsibility.
“Great statement by @votetimscott!” Twitter CEO Elon Musk cheered Friday, as he tweeted out a Scott campaign ad decrying America’s victimhood obsession.
“Today’s kids are growing up immersed in a culture where everyone’s a victim,” Scott, the US Senate’s sole black Republican, says in the 30-second spot, part of a $5.5 million ad buy set to roll out this week in the early-voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire.
“We need to start teaching the necessity of individual responsibility,” the 57-year-old legislator tells a crowd of voters in a town-hall setting.
“If you are able-bodied, you work,” Scott continues. “If you take out a loan, you pay it back. If you commit a violent crime, you go to jail. Can I get an amen?”
By Saturday afternoon, the late-Friday tweet had been viewed more than 14 million times — delighting the senator, whose modest Twitter following stands at just 70,000.
“This is our mission!” Scott tweeted in response to Musk, promising to “save you a seat on Monday” at his official campaign kick-off event in Charleston, SC.
Scott began fundraising off the tweet almost immediately.
“Did you just see what Elon Musk said?!?” his campaign exulted in a Saturday email to supporters.
“Tim Scott has a voice and message that is resonating with Americans, and we are thrilled to see it has resonated with Elon,” the message continued.
Scott, who filed paperwork Friday to enter the 2024 race, is joining an increasingly crowded Republican field.
While former President Donald Trump holds a lead in most polls of GOP primary voters, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is expected to launch his own campaign on Thursday. Former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, businessman Vivek Ramaswamy, former Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson, and others are already in the running.
Scott holds a record-setting $22 million cash on hand, the most of any presidential candidate in history, according to the Federal Election Commission.