Sen. John Courson (R-Columbia) was elected by the Senate Tuesday to succeed Glenn McConnell as President pro tempore.
McConnell had been sworn in as the new Lieutenant Governor only an hour earlier, four days after former Lt. Gov. Ken Ard resigned to face corruption charges.
Courson defeated Senate Majority Leader Harvey Peeler (R-Gaffney) by a 27-17 vote. Courson won with the support of 18 Democrats and 9 Republicans, to Peeler’s 16 Republicans and 1 Democrat.
“The position is institutional,” Courson said, “It’s not a partisan position. That’s the way Sen. McConnell handled it and that’s the way I’m going to handle it.”
Courson has represented the downtown Columbia area in the Senate since 1984. He works in the insurance industry when he’s in the private sector, but also worked for the presidential campaigns of Presidents Reagan and Bush.