Politics & Government

June 10, 2014

Incumbents win comfortably in 3 constitutional officer races in SC

SC voters showed confidence in the incumbent candidates for three constitutional officer races Tuesday. One faces opposition in the fall.

Voters showed confidence in the incumbent candidates for three constitutional officer races Tuesday, electing Robert Livingston, Curtis Loftis and Hugh Weathers by convincing margins in the Republican primaries for adjutant general, state treasurer and commissioner of agriculture, respectively.

Weathers faces two challengers in the general election in the fall.

Livingston handily defeated challenger James Breazeale to effectively win a second term as the state’s top military officer, as there are no challengers in the November general election.

“We’ve got work to continue to do,” Livingston said after the results were announced Tuesday. “We’re going to continue to work on programs that make our National Guard better. We’re going to really concentrate on our service member care.”

It could be the last time voters elect the leader of South Carolina’s 11,000-member Army and Air National Guard, State Guard and state Emergency Management Division. Livingston will campaign in favor of a November ballot initiative that would make the adjutant general a governor-appointed position.

Loftis was effectively chosen to retain his seat as state treasurer for a second term, defeating Brian Adams by a comfortable margin. There are no Democratic or third-party challengers for the position, whose duties include paying the state government’s bills and overseeing the board that regulates state banks and lenders.

Weathers won the Republican primary to continue his bid for a third term as commissioner of agriculture, easily defeating Joe Farmer. He’ll face American Party candidate Emile DeFelice and United Citizens Party candidate David Edmond in November.

Weathers said he wants to maximize opportunities for small farmers and to challenge federal regulations he said are affecting farmers’ ability to do their jobs.

“It’s like a football team – we’re still moving the ball down the field for South Carolina agriculture,” Weathers said. “The vote today just reflects that people believe we’re able to bring results for the state of South Carolina.”

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