(The Hill) — GOP presidential hopeful Tim Scott debuted his girlfriend on the debate stage Wednesday night in a moment that will likely become his most memorable of the evening.
As the five candidates on the stage greeted their spouses and families, the South Carolina senator appeared arm-in-arm with a blonde woman as they posed for photos.
A source familiar with Scott’s campaign confirmed that the woman is Mindy Noce and that she is, indeed, his girlfriend.
Scott’s status as a 58-year-old bachelor has come into focus at several points throughout his campaign. The lawmaker in September confirmed at an Iowa rally that he was dating someone he described as a “lovely, Christian girl.”
“I’m very excited. Very excited,” he said to the crowd at the time.
A Washington Post article a few days earlier had resurfaced discussion about Scott’s marital status. He declined to reveal her name at the time, and the story’s author noted he could not verify that “she exists.”
Scott said, however, that she participates in Bible study and that they play pickleball together.
In May, Scott fielded a question in an Axios interview about his thoughts on becoming the first unmarried president since the 19th century.
“I probably have more time, more energy and more latitude to do the job,” he replied, adding that his “girlfriend wants to see me when I come home.”
Scott’s campaign for the White House has yet to see the bump in poll numbers that he would need to become a viable alternative to former President Donald Trump, who remains the clear frontrunner in the race. The senator has been polling in the low single-digits.