COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – 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.