Tag: HCGOP

Renegade Members Worked to Undermine HCGOP Leadership

Almost immediately after HCGOP reorganization was completed in 2021, a small group of HCGOP members, unhappy at the results of the election for party leaders, began planning how to undermine the elected leaders of the local party, according to a story initially broken by Chad Caton on his podcast “I’m Fired Up.”
According to text messages released by Shannon Grady, one of the group members, definite plans to circumvent the HCGOP and its leadership began shortly after reorganization was completed. Grady has since apologized for her involvement and called the actions of the group wrong.
The leadership of several county parties were taken over by what can be called non-establishment leaders in the 2021 reorganizations. This led SCGOP Chairman Drew McKissick to advocate for “auxiliary groups” in those counties with which the SCGOP would communicate.
How can you profess to want to participate in the party system in a democracy and refuse to accept the results of an election? Maybe that is not a valid question because it seems this attitude of ‘my way or no way’ is becoming the norm in elections.
The initial group of five members in a private chat called “GOP Pirates” was Reese Boyd, Jim Furry, Don Bowne, Gerri McDaniel and Grady, Chairwoman of the Horry County Republican Women’s Club. Boyd was unsuccessful in his bid to become HCGOP chairman and Furry was unsuccessful in his bid to become a state Executive Committee member in the HCGOP reorganization elections.

click on headline above to read more

Lazarus Letter to S.C. Election Commission Executive Director has Odor of Sour Grapes

Mark Lazarus sent a letter to South Carolina Election Commission Executive Director Howard Knapp last week expressing dissatisfaction with the explanation the commission gave to Horry County Council for the mishandling of approximately 1,400 ballots in the June 2022 primary runoff elections.
The letter included the following statements, “I am disappointed in the state election commission’s refusal to ensure this election be conducted in a fair and competent manner, or to offer any remedy to legitimize this election that was tainted by a failed absentee ballot outcome…The Election Commission claims in their response such an error is “unacceptable,” and yet the commission deems as acceptable the skewed election results it produced?”
And
“Now that the state election commission has admitted the mishandling of 1,400 Republican ballots in the Horry County Council chairman’s race that was determined by about 250 votes, what will be done to remedy this election and determine who really won…I look forward to your response in how this situation can be remedied, and the 1,400 absentee voters’ rights and votes are restored to this race.”
The first thing that must be stated is Johnny Gardner won the election. There is no question of that fact. The wrong ballots were initially mailed to approximately 1,400 Republican voters. However, there is nothing on record to indicate even one vote cast, as stipulated in state law, was not counted. There are no remedies necessary nor 1,400 missing votes to be restored!

click on headline above to read more

New Political Group Using Veterans to Gain Credibility

An email to Horry County Council members from the Horry County Republican Party’s former 7th Congressional District elector, Jim Furry, introduced a new political group, Horry County Conservative Alliance (HCCA), while announcing a fundraiser to help homeless veterans.
As a veteran, I am always offended when political organizations, whatever their persuasion on the political spectrum, use veterans in order to gain credibility. It is readily apparent from the contents of the email that is exactly what is happening in this instance.
Titled “Rally for Veterans 2022”, the first four paragraphs are a discussion of the current turmoil within the Horry County Republican Party, including the resignations of party leaders, and how this new group hopes to build a “cadre who will operate the Republican Party…”
It is not until the fifth paragraph that veterans are mentioned in this “Rally for Veterans 2022” email. It announces the HCCA is teaming with the Veterans Welcome Home and Resource Center to conduct a fundraiser at the Conference Center at Barefoot Landing on Saturday October 22, 2022, to raise money for the Center’s “Tiny Home Project” for homeless veterans.
The Veterans Welcome Home and Resource Center is a wonderful organization that began as a vision in the mind of its founder, Kris Tourtellotte, an Army Vietnam Veteran. His initial goal was to organize ‘Welcome Home’ events for veterans returning to the area from Iraq, Afghanistan and other assignments around the world, to thank those veterans for their service to the country and to inform them of various resources, including navigating the Veterans Administration, for veterans in the county.

click on headline above to read more

Lazarus Appeals HCGOP Denial of Illegal Election Protest Amid Apparent Misrepresentation of Facts

Mark Lazarus has appealed the decision of the Horry County Republican Party Executive Committee to deny his request for a new runoff primary election for county council chairman.
A hearing of the appeal has been scheduled before the South Carolina Republican Party Executive Committee on Thursday July 14, 2022, in Columbia beginning at 6:30 p. m.
However, there is no legal basis for the SCGOP Executive Committee to hear that appeal.
The formal appeal document, prepared by Lazarus attorney Butch Bowers, contains apparent false statements about facts which render the entire protest and appeal process null and void.
The HCGOP Executive Party voted 40-5 with two abstentions to dismiss the protest on the grounds that it was not filed by the deadline mandated in state law.
State code Sec. 7-17-520 states, “The protests and contests in the case of county officers and less than county officers shall be filed in writing with the chairman of the county party executive committee, together with a copy for each candidate in the race not later than noon Monday following the day of the declaration by the county committee of the result of the election.”
Bowers did not file the election protest until 8:35 a. m. Tuesday July 5, 2022, in an electronic notification sent to and verified by the Horry County Sheriff’s Office.

click on headline above to read more

Lazarus Election Protest Dismissed by HCGOP Because Filing Deadline Missed

The Horry County Republican Party Executive Committee voted 40 to 5, with two abstentions Thursday night, to dismiss the election protest filed by defeated county chairman candidate Mark Lazarus.
The protest was dismissed not because of reasons cited in the protest filing, i.e. 1377 incorrectly mailed absentee ballots, 208 absentee ballots that arrived after the cutoff deadline for counting or an alleged 1027 disenfranchised voters.
No. The protest was dismissed for one very simple reason – It was filed too late. The protest missed the filing deadline mandated in state law by 20 hours and 35 minutes. And the protest filing itself contains all the evidence necessary to support its dismissal. (A picture of the email that included the electronic filing with the Horry County Sheriff’s Office is attached below.)
The pertinent section of state law relating to notice of protest of a partisan party primary or primary runoff states:
“SECTION 7 17 520 (Code of Laws of South Carolina) Protests and contests generally; filing and service.
“The protests and contests in the case of county officers and less than county officers shall be “filed in writing with the chairman of the county party executive committee, together with a copy for “each candidate in the race not later than noon Monday following the day of the declaration by the “county committee of the result of the election. Service may be perfected by depositing with the county “sheriff a copy of the protest for the chairman together with a sufficient number of copies to be served “upon all candidates in the protested or contested race.”

click on headline above to read more

Time for Horry County Republicans to Get Their Act Together Behind True Conservatives

Responses to several recent articles in Grand Strand Daily about candidates for the Republican nomination in next June’s SC 7th Congressional District primary highlight the cry among local Republicans for the type of candidate they are likely to support.
That type is a candidate who stands for low taxes, limited government, respect for personal liberties and no special favors for special interests.
Candidates are no longer going to be able to get away with claiming to be low tax, limited government conservatives, their actions and records are going to have to prove they are.
The cry does not apply just to 7th Congressional District candidates. It is going to be applied to General Assembly candidates and candidates for local council offices. Republicans today want real conservatives.
This does not bode well for Russell Fry’s candidacy for Congress nor for his political consulting business associate Heather Crawford being reelected.
Both voted for the massive gas tax increase in the General Assembly several years ago as well as the state’s establishment of data warehouses and both have strongly supported the Interstate 73 boondoggle.
The gas tax increase, which has built up considerable excess revenue for the state while state roads and bridges remain in disrepair and the I-73 project which would benefit special interest coffers do not fit into the categories of low tax or denying favors to special interests, the data warehouses may be the most egregious with their possible intrusions on public liberties.
Writing about the data warehouses on thenerve.org website several years ago, Ashley Landess, President of the S. C. Policy Council said in part:
“The Legislature has, in stages, created a sort of “information central,” passing laws that create two data warehouses to pull in information from agencies for health care and social services, education and workforce.
“The goals of this system are nebulous, the privacy protections flimsy, and the possibilities literally limitless as to what could be collected and how it could be used by government officials and politicians.
“It’s bad enough that so much sensitive data will be in one place. Our state has a poor track record of protecting personal information. But the greatest cause for alarm are the underlying motives for creating this system, and the broad range of government bureaucrats and politicians who would have access to your data.”

click on headline above to read more