Washington (CNN) – After spending the weekend considering replacements for retiring Sen. Jim DeMint, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley announced Monday that she will not appoint a "placeholder" senator who will hold the office until a special election is held in 2014.
"As I continue to consider the impending U.S. Senate vacancy, many have discussed the possibility of a 'placeholder' appointee who would pledge to serve for only two years and not seek election to the seat in 2014," Haley said in a statement released by her office. "While there are some good arguments in favor of that approach, I believe the better case is against it."
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DeMint announced last week that he is resigning his seat to take over the conservative Heritage Foundation in Washington.
Under state law, it's now Haley's duty to name a replacement for the tea party icon. She has promised to act quickly.
National conservatives have urged her to appoint Rep. Tim Scott, an African-American congressman from the Charleston area who was elected to Congress in 2010 on a tea party wave. He and other members of the state's congressional delegation are close to DeMint.
But Haley had also mulled the idea of naming an elder GOP statesman from South Carolina - someone like former state Attorney General Henry McMaster or former Ambassador David Wilkins - to fill out the remainder of DeMint's term.
She ruled out that option Monday.
"I do not want to tie the next U.S. Senator from South Carolina's hands regarding future office," Haley said. "I do not want to deprive our state's citizens of the chance to render their judgment on the appointee's performance by way of their vote. Most importantly, while I am an avid supporter of term limits, I do not want the effectiveness of our state's new U.S. Senator to be undermined by the fact that he or she will automatically be leaving the office such a very short time after assuming it.
"I believe South Carolina will be best served by a U.S. Senator who will work hard day in and day out, and put him or herself before the voters at the soonest possible time. Accordingly, I reject the option of a 'placeholder.'"
One clue she might pick Scott: Haley has scheduled a press conference tomorrow at noon in the congressman's hometown of North Charleston. She will talk to reporters after touring a Boeing plant there.