Sen. Tim Scott delivered a humorous and often biting speech at a press charity dinner on Wednesday night that centered on his experience as the only black Republican in the Senate.
The South Carolinian was the featured Republican speaker at a gathering of journalists and lawmakers at the 73rd annual Washington Press Club Foundation dinner at the Ritz Carlton Hotel. He had big shoes to fill – last year fellow South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham joked about how no one would tell if a fellow lawmaker murdered Texas Sen. Ted Cruz on the Senate floor.
Here are Scott’s top 10 one-liners:
1. On being the only black Republican in the Senate:
“A black Republican is like a unicorn…people don’t believe we actually exist.”
2. To Ex-Fox News host Greta Van Susteren, now at MSNBC, who served as master of ceremonies:
“Greta, now that you’re with MSNBC, maybe you can clear something up to me. Every time someone in the media reports fake news, does Brian Williams get a royalty?” (Williams, a former NBC anchor, exaggerated a story about his experience in the Iraq war.)
3. On not joining the Congressional Black Caucus:
“Why would I want to join a black group run by a white dude? In the South, we call that a plantation! I’m just saying.”
4. On the media storm about this photo of White House senior adviser Kellyanne Conway:
“Thinking about fake news, has anyone seen the controversy about Kellyanne Conway and a couch in the Oval Office? Come on people! You remember the ‘90s. That couch has had a whole lot worse things, come on now!”
5. On entering Congress with fellow South Carolinians Reps. Trey Gowdy and Jeff Duncan and Mick Mulvaney, now Trump’s head of the Office of Management and Budget:
"We became like brothers...Obviously brothers from other mothers. Have you seen those fellas?"
6. On comparing Washington and Hollywood:
“People say Washington is the Hollywood for nerds…. Actually they’re very different. One is the place that produces fantasy and fiction with jealousy over who gets the best roles, enormous egos, and a lot of backstabbing. And the other is where they make movies.”
7. On his friend, Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C.:
“What have we learned about Trey Gowdy? He has taught us that you can wear a black suit and white socks and call it fashionable. And no matter your hair, you can have a part-time job on Fox News even as a member of Congress.”
8. On his experience with law enforcement, which he has spoken seriously about:
“Now I know that this is not an occasion to discuss issues. I know that. But with all that’s been going on between the minority communities and law enforcement, I just got to say – I love the police. And I tell that to the officer each and every time he pulls me over and asks me is this my car!”
9. On former South Carolina Gov. and current United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley:
“Now you all know that we as Republicans do not believe in affirmative action. We just don’t believe it. However, if you ever get a call from your female Indian governor saying, 'Does the brother have a minute? I want to talk with you about becoming a U.S. Senator?' you say, ‘Yes!'’ ”
10. And his sign-off:
“I hate to speak and run, but I finally got an invite to the White House, and as you can imagine in the last administration I never got invited to the White House, and tonight is movie night, and I heard we’re watching the president’s favorite – from Russia with love.”