Republican Senator Jim DeMint
of South Carolina is stepping down in January to take the helm as president of The Heritage Foundation,
a conservative think tank that spends its $80 million annual budget
fighting everything from raising taxes to marriage equality to giving
ex-convicts the right to vote.
The Wall Street Journal
reports that DeMint’s departure means that South Carolina Gov. Nikki
Haley will name a successor who will then run on their own during a
special 2014 election.
DeMint, a former US Rep. elected to the Senate in 2004 and reelected
during the Tea Party surge of 2010, has made homophobia a hallmark of
his Senate career: he has consistently said gay marriage will destroy society and even went so far as to say that gay people and single women shouldn’t be teachers, a remark he lated defended.