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S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley is still vetting former U.S. Ambassador to Canada David Wilkins to fill the Senate seat being vacated by Jim DeMint, sources at Wilkins’ law firm tell FITS.

Wilkins – who was Speaker of the S.C. House of Representatives from 1994-2005 – has reportedly spoken on several occasions with Haley’s former chief of staff Tim Pearson about the post.  He’s also agreed to Pearson’s demand that he run for the seat in 2014 in the event he receives the coveted appointment.

Does this mean Wilkins is going to get the nod?  Or even wind up on Haley’s “short list?”

We shall see …

Wilkins’ name was initially floated as a possible “placeholder” for the Senate position – an option that Haley has since ruled out.  Also, the last time we checked he was vehemently displeased with Haley (and Pearson) for not returning his phone calls.

Funny how an opening in the U.S. Senate re-calibrates relationships, huh?

As far as we’re concerned the 66-year-old Greenville, S.C. native would be a terrible choice for this post.  Wilkins has worn the “Republican” label throughout his political career, but like most “Republicans” in the S.C. General Assembly he’s nothing but a status quo tax-and-spender.  In fact the only thing redeeming about Wilkins’ tenure as Speaker is that he wasn’t quite as fiscally liberal as the man who replaced him, Bobby Harrell.