Primary battle leaves Henry McMaster with less cash than Bakari Sellers

ashain@thestate.comJuly 11, 2014 

  • Haley money coming from outside SC

    Gov. Nikki Haley, a possible national Republican player, continues to receive about half of her contributions from outside South Carolina, according to analysis of contribution data submitted late Thursday.

    Haley raised 54 percent of the $1.05 million that she collected in the April-to-June quarter from outside the state — higher than the 49 percent of contributions that she has collected overall from outside South Carolina since she took office in 2011.

    Democratic gubernatorial challenger Vincent Sheheen, who raised half of what Haley collected in the quarter, gets 91 percent of his contributions from South Carolinians.

    Donors from the four states where Haley held fundraisers during the second quarter — Arkansas, Florida, New Jersey and Texas — accounted for 42 percent of the Republican incumbent’s record quarterly haul. Nearly a quarter of Haley’s money during the period came from the Sunshine State, where former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush held a fundraiser for Haley.

    Bush, who is considering a 2016 White House bid, gave $1,000 to Haley, the governor of an early presidential primary state.

    Other notable donors to Haley during the second quarter included: Amway co-founder and Orlando Magic owner Richard DeVos and his wife, Helen; Wayne Weaver, former owner of the Jacksonville Jaguars; and Elizabeth Koch, wife of businessman and GOP power broker Charles Koch, and Koch’s daughter-in-law, Anna. Haley also has received contributors from Charles Koch and his son, Chase, as well as a Koch-owned company.

    Andrew Shain

After winning a Republican primary runoff, Henry McMaster is starting his November race for S.C. lieutenant governor with less money in the bank than his Democratic opponent, state Rep. Bakari Sellers.

Sellers, a Denmark lawyer who did not face primary opposition, has $194,212 in cash after raising $117,055 from April to June, according to records submitted to the S.C. Ethics Commission late Thursday.

McMaster — an attorney, former S.C. attorney general and state Republican Party chairman — raised $331,144 during 2014’s second quarter, when he defeated three GOP challengers.

That is more than Sellers has raised since joining the race a year ago.

However, the GOP primary battle, including a runoff win over Columbia businessman Mike Campbell, left McMaster with only $69,574 in cash as of June 30.

Both McMaster and Campbell, the son of the late Republican Gov. Carroll Campbell, joined the race in late March.

But the most recent financial filings make it clear Campbell could not match McMaster’s fund-raising power. McMaster has raised $558,426 since launching his campaign — seven times more than the $75,155 that Campbell raised.

Sellers, who hopes to give Democrats their first statewide elected officeholder since 2011, has raised $329,589 in the past year.

If elected, Sellers would join Republican Tim Scott or Democrat Joyce Dickerson, who are facing each other in a U.S. Senate race, as the first African-Americans elected to statewide office in South Carolina since Reconstruction.

Democrat Yancey McGill now holds the lieutenant governor’s office, but he was elected by the state Senate to hold S.C.’s No. 2 job only temporarily after Republican Glenn McConnell resigned to become president of the College of Charleston. McGill will remain lieutenant governor until the winner of the November election is sworn in on Jan. 13.

The part-time job’s main responsibilities are overseeing the state Office on Aging and presiding over the state Senate. But both McMaster and Sellers also have pledged to help with economic-development efforts if elected.

This year is the last time the lieutenant governor will be elected as a standalone office in South Carolina. In 2012, voters approved having the governor and lieutenant governor elected on the same ticket starting in 2018.

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