(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)
With Jim DeMint leaving the Senate to become president of The Heritage Foundation, all eyes will now turn to South Carolina governor Nikki Haley. Haley will appoint an interim senator who will serve in DeMint’s stead until 2014, when a statewide election will be held for the seat.
As Reid Wilson reports in National Journal, a long list of Palmetto State political insiders will vie for the appointment. Names like Mick Mulvaney, Henry McMaster, David Wilkins, and Nathan Ballentine may not be well known nationally, but they are important figures in South Carolina politics who could very well end up replacing DeMint.
There are some nationally known figures who are certain to draw Haley’s consideration as well. Here are 5 high-profile Republicans who could be picked by Haley — or mount a 2014 challenge if they are passed over: