By Paul Gable
The new 7th Congressional District in South
Carolina will get big play in the coming year as both the Democratic and
Republican parties are looking at hot contests for the seat.
The Republicans already have nine announced candidates, with
a possible tenth candidate in the wings.
The Democrats are currently looking at a possible five
candidates. S.C. state rep Ted Vick of Florence and Myrtle Beach attorney
Parnell Diggs are already announced. Myrtle Beach attorney Preston Brittain
will announce in early January.
Word around Democratic circles is that long time S.C. state
rep Vida Miller of Georgetown has already decided to throw her hat in the ring,
although no formal announcement has been made yet. Former Spratt intern and
Reid staffer Moses Dixon of Hartsville is also pondering a candidacy.
The Democrats believe the new 7th District winnable. Horry County state executive committee member Cedric Spain said the new district is nearly evenly split between registered Republican and Democratic voters.
“When you look at the eight counties, this is a very
contestable district for Democrats,” said Spain. “It’s almost like they made a
mistake in Columbia when they were drawing the lines for it.”
Spain said Democrats will be working to energize their base
and turn out large numbers of voters in the general election.
“We have a president to re-elect and a new representative to
send to Congress,” said Spain. “We will be working hard on both.”
Ken Senter, a retired United Auto Workers member said union
retirees were also looking to get involved in the 2012 elections.
“We have a good group of union retirees in Horry County,”
said Senter. “We meet once a month in Little River. Workers need a voice in
Washington and we will be vetting all the candidates for the 7th
District very closely to see where they are on union issues.”
Looks like it could be a wild ride in Horry County and
throughout the state when the 2012 election cycle gets moving in earnest after