COLUMBIA, SC — Former state attorney general Henry McMaster has outraised his Republican opponents for lieutenant governor since April, but Charleston developer Pat McKinney continues to have the most cash on hand.
McKinney, a political newcomer who announced his bid six months before his competitors, released a second television ad this week, featuring his pro-business agenda. McMaster is the only other of the four GOP rivals to air a TV ad thus far.
McKinney has raised $109,068 since April 1 and has $201,638 on hand for the June 10 primary, according to a campaign report filed with the S.C. Ethics Commission. He has raised $832,218, including a $245,000 loan, since entering the race last summer.
McMaster, a former GOP state party chairman who ran unsuccessfully for governor in 2010, has raised $225,420 since April and has $102,848 on hand, according to his campaign filing.
Columbia pastor Ray Moore gathered $22,450 in the past two months and has $6,653 on hand.
Columbia businessman Mike Campbell, who like McMaster also entered the race in March, has not filed a pre-election report. The reports were due Monday. But Campbell will use the five-day grace period allowed by state rules, his campaign said. Campbell, son of the late Gov. Carroll Campbell, spent last week touring all of South Carolina’s 46 counties.
In his new commercial, McKinney said he wants to review state regulations, cut taxes for small businesses and individuals, and “crack down on out-of-control lawsuits.”
The ad highlights how candidates for the state’s No. 2 job want a larger role in shaping the state’s agenda.
The lieutenant governor presides over the state Senate and oversees the state Office on Aging, but the five major-party candidates also have talked about other major issues — especially in economic development — usually handled by the governor.
McKinney’s ad promotes ideas pushed by Gov. Nikki Haley, who appointed him to the State Ports Authority board. Haley also created a regulatory review task force last year, and she touts her successes in cutting taxes and tort reform.
The winner of the GOP primary will face Democratic state Rep. Bakari Sellers in November’s general election.
Republican Lt. Gov. Glenn McConnell, a former state Senate leader, chose not run for the office, which he took over after Ken Ard’s resignation in 2012. McConnell is scheduled to become president of the College of Charleston on July 1, though he might start at his alma mater sooner.