South Carolina Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer has denied rumors he is gay.

Bauer recently made headlines as a possible replacement for Govern Mark Sanford should the Republican step down amid a sex scandal that has dominated the media for the last week.

“Let's go ahead and dispel that now,” Bauer said in an interview with The State, published Wednesday.

Bauer, a Republican, was referring to widely circulated rumors that he is gay. Last month, openly lesbian politician Linda Ketner outed Bauer and two other South Carolina lawmakers in an interview published on the progressive political blog Fire Dog Lake.

“We have more gay people serving in South Carolina than probably in any place in the United States. They're just not out of the closet,” she said, then gave the examples of U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham, South Carolina State Senator Glenn McConnell and Lieutenant Governor Andre Bauer. Ketner, who came close to unseating incumbent S.C. Representative Henry Brown last November, later apologized for her remarks.

“One word, two letters. 'No.' Let's go ahead and dispel that now,” Bauer said, then added, “Is Andre Bauer gay? That is now the story. We're a long way from where we were a week ago.”

Governor Sanford, however, has so far resisted calls for him to resign.