Politics & Government

Bikers for Trump founder says he’ll challenge SC’s Joe Cunningham for Congress seat

Chris Cox of Mount Pleasant rakes leaves near the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., during the 2013 government shutdown. Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Chris Cox of Mount Pleasant rakes leaves near the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., during the 2013 government shutdown. Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta) AP

A Lowcountry man who brought together fellow motorcyclists in the group Bikers for Trump says he’s found a new way to support the president. Chris Cox of Mount Pleasant announced on Facebook that he will be running for Congress in 2020 against Charleston Democrat Joe Cunningham.

I couldn’t be more proud of the friends and patriots I served beside in our successful 2016 effort to elect and, now, our 2020 effort to re-elect President Donald Trump,” Cox said in a post announcing he was turning the biker group over to a top lieutenant. “Now, in my effort to continue to support President Trump and our great country, I am stepping things up.”

Cox started Bikers for Trump in 2015 as an unofficial security detail for the then-presidential candidate’s often combustible rallies, forming a “wall of meat” between Trump and the protesters who often showed up at his 2016 campaign events, according to an interview Cox gave The Washington Times.

Before that, Cox was most famous for mowing the lawn around the Lincoln Memorial during the 2013 government shutdown, carrying a South Carolina flag as he performed chores for furloughed government workers during the shutdown.

In his Facebook post, Cox said he was “disappointed in the election of a liberal Democrat to represent me and my neighbors in Congress.” Cunningham defeated former GOP state Rep. Katie Arrington in 2018 to win the seat formerly held by Mark Sanford.

He told The Washington Times his biker brand and alliance with Trump will give him an advantage in a crowded Republican primary, although he might alter his denim-jacket and t-shirt look for the race.

“I may have a collar on, but I’m not going to reinvent myself,” he said.

Cox is only the latest entrant into the race. Two weeks ago, state Rep. Nancy Mace of Daniel Island announced she would seek to unseat Cunningham after a single term.

Others who have announced plans to challenge Cunningham are financial planner and Mount Pleasant Town Councilwoman Kathy Landing, Beaufort County Councilman Mike Covert of Bluffton and Logan Cunningham, a Hilton Head Island school teacher who lives in Bluffton.

Bristow Marchant is currently split between covering Richland County and the 2020 presidential race. He has more than 10 years’ experience covering South Carolina. He won the S.C. Press Association’s 2015 award for Best Series on a toxic Chester County landfill fire, and was part of The State’s award-winning 2016 election coverage.
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