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Historic day in South Carolina Senate: Lt. Gov steps down, Peeler takes over as President

File / WACH

South Carolina senators have approved new rules since the lieutenant governor is no longer presiding.

The Senate unanimously approved a new position called "President of the Senate" on Tuesday to preside over the body like the lieutenant governor had done.

Senators picked 38-year Senate veteran Harvey Peeler to be President. The Republican from Gaffney says it was the culmination of a lifelong dream to lead his fellow senators.

Senators agreed the Senate President cannot be the leader of a Senate committee to prevent consolidation of power.

Current Senate President Pro Tempore Hugh Leatherman of Florence is also chairman of the powerful Senate Finance Committee.

Lt. Kevin Bryant of Anderson quietly left the chamber after Peeler's selection. Voters changed the constitution to remove the lieutenant governor's powers in 2012.

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