Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush to stump for Haley
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush – a 2016 Republican White House prospect – will stump in Greenville and Lexington for Nikki Haley on Thursday, ahead of headlining a fundraiser for the South Carolina governor.
Bush will appear at 3 p.m. at Hudson’s Smokehouse at 4948 Sunset Blvd. in Lexington.
He will headline a fundraiser for Lexington’s Haley at the Capitol City Club. Haley has nearly $1 million more in the bank than her Democratic rival, state Sen. Vincent Sheheen of Camden, heading into the race’s final two weeks.
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This is Bush’s first trip to South Carolina as the 2016 presidential cycle informally kicks off.
Haley campaigned with another 2016 GOP presidential hopeful, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, last month in Charleston.
Other GOP prospects — including former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and U.S. Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky — have visited the early presidential primary state. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida came to Columbia on Wednesday for a S.C. GOP party fundraiser.
Hutto ad targets Graham as disinterested in S.C.
Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate Brad Hutto launched a statewide TV ad Wednesday.
“ Lindsey Graham is always busy promoting himself, but really, Lindsey Graham for president?” an announcer says as headlines about a possible 2016 bid for Graham appear.
The announcer goes on to say “Brad Hutto believes it’s time for a senator who will work for South Carolina.”
The ad touts Hutto’s platform on raising the minimum wage, passing equal pay for women and protecting the financial security of seniors. “It’s time for a change,” the announcer says.
Hutto says at the end of the ad that he approves of the message because “we need a senator who cares more about making a difference than making headlines.”
Hutto’s campaign spokesman Lachlan McIntosh said the ad buy just two weeks before the election is “statewide at a strong level.”
Sellers airs his first ad
Bakari Sellers, the Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor, started airing his first TV commercial Wednesday.
The ads are airing on network and cable television, said Sellers, whose campaign is spending about $200,000 on the ad blitz.
In the ad, Sellers, a 30-year-old state representative from Denmark, draws comparisons with his opponent Henry McMaster, a 67-year-old Republican stalwart and former S.C. attorney general who has run unsuccessfully for three statewide offices.
McMaster, an ally of Republican Gov. Nikki Haley, outraised Sellers between July 1 and mid-October though he holds just a slim margin in cash on hand, according to campaign reports filed with the state late Monday.
McMaster has raised $348,361 over the past 31/2 months and has $229,564 to spend in the final two weeks of the election. His campaign took out $150,000 in loans during the GOP primary and still owes about $84,000 for those loans.
Sellers has raised $125,479 since mid-summer. He has $223,677 on hand, much of it headed to the airwaves. He has no loans.
The pair are scheduled to debate next Tuesday on ETV.
Haley appears in ad for McMaster
Gov. Nikki Haley is appearing in a new television ad with the GOP candidate for lieutenant governor, Henry McMaster, cementing their plans to work together if they win their Nov. 4 elections.
McMaster endorsed Haley in the 2010 governor’s election after losing to her in the Republican primary. She appointed him to the S.C. Ports Authority and as co-chairman of an ethics reform task force.
The ad debuting this weekend includes a shot of Haley and McMaster chatting with the words “Haley/McMaster” on the screen. Haley does not speak in the ad.
This is the last time the lieutenant governor will run as a standalone candidate. The governor and lieutenant governor will run on the same ticket starting in 2018.
The new ad features McMaster narrating about his experience for the second-highest office in the state, including his appointment as U.S. attorney and election as state attorney general.
GOP, Dems join to push for appointed military leader
S.C. Democrats and Republicans do agree on something.
Both parties want S.C. voters to give the governor the power to appoint the state’s adjutant general – the leader of the state’s military department, including the National Guard – ending the election of for that position.
The parties have launched a website to raise awareness about the Nov. 4 vote, when voters will decide whether to amend the state Constitution to change the way the state’s military leader is selected.
S.C. Democratic Party chairman Jaime Harrison and S.C. GOP chairman Matt Moore joined Maj. Gen. Bob Livingston, the state’s current adjutant general, on the State House grounds Tuesday to show their support for the amendment.
South Carolina is the only state in the nation that elects its adjutant general, who oversees the Army and Air National Guard, and the state’s emergency management division.
Anyone can run for the position regardless of qualifications, Livingston said. It is “conceivable that we could have someone well funded and not qualified” win, he added.
Livingston, first elected in 2010, faces no opposition in the Nov. 4 general election.
If voters approve the amendment, the governor would appoint the adjutant general, with the consent of the state Senate, to fill the position starting in 2019.
GOP chairman rebukes candidate for comments
The S.C. GOP’s chairman said Wednesday that a GOP congressional candidate’s comments comparing same-sex marriage supporters with the destructive creatures from the movie “Gremlins” does not represent S.C. values.
Republican Party chief Matt Moore said the party is not actively supporting Anthony Culler’s bid to unseat 21-year Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn of Columbia.
Culler called gay marriage supporters “bullies” and “Gremlins that will only destroy our way of life” in a Facebook post last week. The Kingstree resident repeated the “Gremlins” comparison in a video posted Monday.
That earned a rebuke from Moore, the state’s Republican leader.
“Most people learned in kindergarten not to call other people names,” Moore said. “Our party believes in the conservative definition of marriage, but we also believe in loving our neighbors and treating them with respect. Mr. Culler’s desperate attention seeking in no way represents the good, decent South Carolinians across our state.”
For his comments, Culler no longer has a chance of receiving support from the state GOP, even though he won a contested primary in June, Moore said. The party has not been providing support for Culler, who is trying to win in a heavily Democratic district, Moore added.
Andrew Shain, Jamie Self, Cassie Cope