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South Carolina Club for Growth

SC Club for Growth - Endorsements

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 30, 2012

South Carolina Club for Growth PAC Endorsed Candidates

COLUMBIA, SC -Today, South Carolina Club for Growth PAC announced their endorsements for the 2012 General Election.

“In one week South Carolinians will go to the polls to choose who will represent them. Every election cycle both candidates and incumbents claim to be fiscally responsible and for less government. Sadly, soon as they arrive at the Statehouse many forget their campaign promises and side with the status quo. For this reason it is important voters realize that promises made on the campaign trail are not always kept at the Statehouse. The candidates endorsed below are for reducing spending, more accountable government and less regulations. We are confident that once elected they will keep their campaign promises,” said PAC Chairman Dave Ellison.

SC Club for Growth PAC Endorsed Candidates – 2012 General Election
Rex Rice – Senate District 2
Kerry Wood – Senate District 11
Joe Thompson – Senate District 15
Katrina Shealy – Senate District 23
Dee Dee Vaughters – Senate District 26
Greg Hembree – Senate District 28
Tony Barwick – Senate District 35

Ed Harris – House District 3
Samuel Rivers – House District 15
Gaye Holt – House District 34
Richie Yow – House District 53
John Steinberger – House District 114

SC Club for Growth’s mission includes:
* Promoting economic freedom
* Lowering the tax burden on South Carolina families
* Creating an efficient and accountable state government
* Reducing wasteful state spending
* Protecting South Carolina small businesses from onerous regulations
* Reforming our pension system and entitlement programs to avoid unfunded liabilities

About SC Club for Growth PAC:
South Carolina Club for Growth PAC is a network of fiscal conservatives dedicated to expanding the prosperity of working families through the Reagan doctrine of lower taxes, smaller government and strong free enterprise.

SC Club for Growth PAC’s efforts are funded through the contributions of hundreds of South Carolinians from around the state who are fed up with politicians saying one thing at home and doing another once in Columbia.

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2012 General Election Endorsements

October 8th, 2012 by SC CFG

Dear Friends,

This spring hundreds of candidates were kicked off the ballot for a legal technicality which did not apply to incumbents.

Despite that setback, there is opportunity. The reform movement is poised to gain enough votes in the South Carolina Senate to allow passage of taxpayer friendly legislation that has languished for many years.  This is due to a mixture of primary wins, Senators retiring and opportunities to pick up a few seats in November.

Every single Senate race counts.  For example, the legislative session ended a few months ago with reform minded Senators falling a single vote shy of finally passing legislation (first proposed a full decade ago) that would replace the archaic Budget and Control Board.

One single vote short.  The good news is that two of the Senators who voted the wrong way on this and many other close votes are in the fights of their political lives this fall.  So we present to you information on them, their races and the two women who should replace them.

Katrina Shealy (Senate District 23 – Lexington County) 

With almost 30 years of experience in the insurance industry and a husband who owns a small business, Lexington County resident Katrina Shealy understands that more regulations and higher taxes hurt job creation.

She will fight for tax reform and against job killing regulations.

In her run for state Senate four years ago Katrina won the 3-way primary, but narrowly lost to the incumbent in the runoff. This was largely because of a significant effort to get Democrats to vote in the Republican race.

Why would Democrats turn out in droves to vote for a self-proclaimed Republican? Simple – supposed-Republican Senator Jake Knotts regularly votes with the Democrats.

There is no bigger barrier to reform in the SC legislature than Jake Knotts.  On our most recent scorecard Knotts scored an F with a grade of 24 which is consistent with his career average of 21 out of 100.

Remember the aforementioned effort to kick hundreds of challengers off ballots?  That was instigated by Senator Knotts. He was so desperate to hold onto his seat he initiated the legal fiasco which ultimately denied over one million voters the right to choose their elected officials. 

Fortunately Katrina worked quickly to gather the thousands of signatures necessary to get on the ballot as a petition candidate.  Given his recent reprimand by the Ethics Committee because he, “broke many campaign finance laws” and he even called our governor a “raghead,” Knotts has become an embarrassment to the Republican Party. In fact, both the local and state parties have taken the extraordinary steps of endorsing his opponent, Katrina Shealy.

As the former Chairwoman of the Lexington County Republican Party, Katrina has significant grassroots and party support but needs our help to educate the public that a straight ticket Republican vote actually puts a liberal back in office.  Polling shows this to be a very winnable race if we can help her get the funds for that education effort.

Please join us by investing generously in Katrina’s campaign in order to remove the roadblock to reform that is Jake Knotts.

Deedee Vaughters (Senate District 26 – Lexington and Aiken Counties)

Deedee is a lifelong South Carolina resident, wife of a physician on our board, mother of three children and a former member of the SC Policy Council Board.  As if that wasn’t enough, she also owns a small business and helps manage her husband’s medical practice!  Through real world experience and her up close look at state government, she “gets it” in ways that most candidates and even legislators never will.

Since she began her campaign over a year ago, Deedee has knocked on over 6,000 doors and raised over $70,000. These are impressive numbers for a senate race but her Democrat opponent is a 35-year incumbent and personal injury attorney with over $180,000 in his campaign account.

Senator Setzler has campaigned as a “compassionate conservative” because he knows his district is trending Republican. His voting record and recent SC Club for Growth scorecard score of 23 tell a different story.

He voted to spend almost $1 million on a “Green Bean Museum” and even voted to raise the Senate’s own budget by $3 million in a tough budget year which saw teachers laid off due to budget cuts.

Setzler is also one of the Senators taking advantage of a special legislative perk that allows him to take his legislative pension while still in office. This sweetheart deal pays him more for his part time job as a legislator than average South Carolinians make working full time!

He also takes a $131 per day hotel and meal reimbursement every legislative day even though he lives in West Columbia, just a few minutes from the Statehouse.  In fact, last year he took home over $55,000 as a part time Senator plus another $70,000 in taxpayer funds from some local governments for alleged legal work.

The difference between Deedee and Setzler could not be any clearer. Deedee runs a small business and medical office while Setzler is a personal injury lawyer who sues job creators.  Deedee will fight for the best education for our children whereas Setzler supported a budget that provided millions more for legislative staffers while laying off teachers.  Deedee turned down taxpayer-funded benefits when serving on a state board while Setzler is taking advantage of his 35 years in office and the system to pull in over $120,000 from taxpayers for part-time work.

Polling shows Deedee has closed the gap and can win this race if she can get the word out about her opponent and his record. She is an incredibly bright, hard-working woman who needs our help getting her across the finish line.  We need her energy, knowledge and courage in the Senate so please join us in generously supporting Deedee’s campaign.

South Carolina Club for Growth PAC

During the primaries and the runoffs we had over an 80% success rate in the races where we were involved. Your donations and the PAC’s contributions made a huge difference in these races and even helped some of our endorsed candidates come from behind in the polls to win their races!

We are always very careful to only ask for your investment in races where our direct and PAC funds can make the difference. The two races mentioned above are very tight races that can go either way depending on our help.

We need more reform-minded voters in the Senate and have two incredible opportunities to pick them up by supporting our PAC and Katrina’s and Deedee’s campaigns.  We expect both of these races to come down to the wire and the results may well determine whether we narrowly win or lose crucial votes in the Senate over the next four years.

All investments in candidates and our PAC – no matter the size – help both the candidates and the entire reform movement by showing the broadening base of support for taking back our state government.

Thanks in advance for any amount you can contribute.

Cordially,

David Ellison, Chairman
P.S.  – Due to the large number of candidates kicked off the ballot, this may well be our only bundling asks of the 2012 general election cycle so we would ask that you please give generously to the two campaigns as well as our PAC.  
Please write your checks to the individual campaign or SC Club for Growth PAC and mail them to:
SC Club for Growth State Action PAC
PO Box 11451
Columbia, SC 29211

Dear Friends,

The 2012 primaries are in the books. Six of the eight candidates we endorsed won their races last night, and a ninth candidate we opposed – Senator David Thomas in Greenville – came in third. That means he didn’t even make the runoff for the seat he has held since 1985.

Senate Races

Senator Kevin Bryant easily won last night, getting 76% in the Senate District 3 primary. Senator Bryant has been a Taxpayer Hero since he was elected. We are excited to have four more years of his conservative voice in the legislature since is unopposed this fall.

Challenger Riley Harvell fought a tough battle against longtime incumbent Senator Billy O’Dell and ended up short with only 42% of the vote. We are hopeful that O’Dell will remember how well we publicized some of his bad votes and consider retiring after this new term.

Representative Tom Corbin won his race for the open senate seat vacated by retiring Senator Phil Shoopman.  Rep. Corbin has scored well on our scorecard and we look forward to him being a strong asset to the fiscal conservative caucus in the Senate.

In the biggest shocker of the night, Senator Lee Bright handily beat trial lawyer and former Senator John Hawkins in the Spartanburg/Greenville primary. As of two weeks ago, polls showed Senator Bright losing by 10 points. We sent out mail about Hawkins abysmal record and put together a phone bank to help close the gap. Over the weekend, Governor Haley also came to Senator Bright’s aid with her endorsement and a Monday campaign appearance.  Our combined efforts put Senator Bright well over the top with a result no one was expecting – a 20 point victory.

Deedee Vaughters – the wife of Dr. Bauer Vaughters – our former Board Chairman – won the Senate District 26 Republican primary. She will now go on to face the 35 year liberal incumbent Senator Nilkki Setzler. This is one of the few real swing districts and we be watching this race closely.

As I already noted Senator David Thomas did not make the runoff. While we did not endorse a candidate in this race, we did produce a short video (click here to watch) showing that Senator Thomas was taking advantage of a perk not offered to any other state employees. Shortly after this video was released three more candidates jumped into the race. Two business men are now in the runoff for this seat, and we will be talking to them again as we decide who to endorse.

House Races

In addition to our win in the Lee Bright race, we won both Spartanburg House races where the PAC was engaged. Challenger Donna Wood defeated Representative Steve Parker, who tried to stop good government legislation at every opportunity. Representative Bill Chumley, whom we supported over a trial lawyer incumbent two years ago, was able to beat his status quo opponent.

Our one House loss was in Dorchester County, where Jordan Bryngleson lost his bid for an open House seat to Ed Carter.

 

Your donations to our PAC play a crucial role recruiting and electing true fiscal conservatives. Yesterday was a big step forward, but we are not done yet. With the primaries behind us, we are now looking at the runoffs and general election races.  If you have any ideas for potential endorsements please let me know.

Thank you for all your help. I look forward to working with you as the 2012 election cycle progresses.

 

Best,

Phillip Cease
Executive Director

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 7, 2010

South Carolina Club for Growth PAC Endorses Six More Candidates

COLUMBIA, SC -Today, South Carolina Club for Growth PAC announced their next endorsements for the 2012 primary season.

Next week South Carolinians will go to the polls to choose the candidates for November. For too long candidates and incumbents have claimed to be fiscal conservatives while on the campaign trail but then take on a tax and spend mentality when in Columbia. It is important that voters realize that what is promised on the campaign trail does not always happen in Columbia The incumbents endorsed below run on a platform of fiscal conservatism and good government then keep those promises in office,” said PAC Chairman Dave Ellison.
SC Club for Growth PAC Endorsed Incumbents  – 2012 Primary Election
Senator Kevin Bryant – Senate District 3
Representative Bill Chumley – House District 35
Representative Tom Corbin – Senate District 5
One of the goals of the SC Club for Growth PAC is to target lawmakers that claim to be conservative and replace them with true fiscal conservatives. The candidates below have campaigned against higher spending and more regulation and we believe will remember these promises after they take the oath of office.
SC Club for Growth PAC Endorsed Candidates  – 2012 Primary Election
Dee Dee Vaughters – Senate District 26
Donna Wood – House District 37
Jordan Bryngelson – House District 97
SC Club for Growth’s mission includes:
* Promoting economic freedom
* Lowering the tax burden on South Carolina families
* Creating an efficient and accountable state government
* Reducing wasteful state spending
* Protecting South Carolina small businesses from onerous regulations
* Reforming our pension system and entitlement programs to avoid unfunded liabilities
About SC Club for Growth PAC:
South Carolina Club for Growth PAC is a network of fiscal conservatives dedicated to expanding the prosperity of working families through the Reagan doctrine of lower taxes, smaller government and strong free enterprise.
SC Club for Growth PAC’s efforts are funded through the contributions of hundreds of South Carolinians from around the state who are fed up with politicians saying one thing at home and doing another once in Columbia.
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