COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – The Latest on South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley being confirmed as ambassador to the United Nations:
Republican Henry McMaster has been sworn in as the 91st governor of South Carolina, after Nikki Haley resigned as the state’s CEO to become United Nations ambassador.
McMaster was sworn in Tuesday, less than an hour after Haley was confirmed by the U.S. Senate and submitted her resignation as governor.
McMaster’s move leaves a vacancy in the lieutenant governor’s office. While the state constitution calls for the Senate’s leader to fill the role, Senate President Pro Tem Hugh Leatherman has refused to leave the Senate to take the largely ceremonial position.
Leatherman resigned his leadership post Tuesday afternoon.
The Senate must elect a new president pro tem, who would then immediately be sworn in as lieutenant governor. That’s expected to be Republican Sen. Kevin Bryant of Anderson.
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley has resigned as the state’s CEO to become U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.
Haley turned in her resignation letter Tuesday minutes after the U.S. Senate confirmed her as President Donald Trump’s Cabinet pick. That makes Republican Lt. Gov. Henry McMaster the 91st governor of South Carolina.
The state’s first female and first minority governor resigns with two years remaining in her second term.
Under the state constitution, McMaster immediately ascends to the job. His official swearing-in ceremony will be held later.
The 69-year-old McMaster has been a close ally of Haley’s since losing to her in the 2010 GOP gubernatorial primary.
Legislators of both parties say they are eager for McMaster to take over. They believe his governing style will be congenial rather than combative.