The Buzz

SC GOP chairman won’t seek re-election

jblake@thestate.com

The state Republican Party soon will have a new leader.

S.C. GOP Chairman Matt Moore will not seek reelection, he told The Buzz before announcing his news Saturday.

"It has been the honor of my life to serve as state chairman,” said Moore, whose term expires at the party’s May convention.

“I still wake up every day feeling humbled and blessed to serve in such an important leadership role. ... (W)ith so many changes in state and national politics, I feel like now is the right time to hand over the office of state chairman to someone new."

Elected chairman in 2013 at the age of 31, Moore was the youngest state chairman of the two major political parties in the nation. He has presided over the state Republican Party in favorable years.

The GOP has a perfect record of winning statewide offices under Moore’s watch and, according to the state party, has elected the most S.C. State House Republicans since 1874. The party also touts record turnout during the 2016 GOP presidential primary.

Moore helped the party raise more than $4 million in two election cycles and pay off the party’s $340,000 debt, amassed during the 2012 ballot fiasco that kicked many candidates off the ballot.

Moore also touted getting more than 750 mentions and quotes in major news outlets and appearing on major news networks more than 30 times.

A former S.C. GOP executive director, Moore earned a salary during his tenure as chairman, a position that historically has been unpaid.

Republican leaders heaped praise on Moore, who was among a chorus of GOP critics of then-presidential candidate Donald Trump.

U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-Seneca, said Moore is “one of the state's best party chairs in history. ... Matt represents the future of the Republican Party, and I hope he'll continue to lead when called upon.”

So what’s next for Moore, now 34?

He’s exploring options in the private sector — er, looking to get a real job.

Or maybe South Carolinians will see Moore on the stump.

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