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Charleston Mayor Race: Ginny Deerin Boast Big Dollars

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BUT DOES LEON STAVRINAKIS STILL HAVE THE MONEY EDGE?

Charleston, S.C. mayoral candidate Ginny Deerin says her campaign has taken the lead in fundraising for this November’s election – raising an impressive $816,000 for this high-profile (and increasingly testy) municipal race.

According to Deerin’s campaign, that puts her just ahead of the frontrunner for the post – fifth-term S.C. Rep. Leon Stavrinakis, who has raised $807,000.  A third candidate, local businessman John Tecklenburg, has raised $668,000.

No other candidate has topped the $100,000 mark.

Stavrinakis’ campaign countered Deerin’s boast with its cash-on-hand advantage – $258,000 to Deerin’s $130,000.  A Stavrinakis aide also said Deerin’s fundraising “advantage” was due to in-kind donations, not actual money raised.

Stavrinakis is putting some of his money on a new television ad entitled “Build Up,” which his campaign says is intended counter to the “false, negative attack TV ad” launched by Deerin last week.

Deerin was the first South Carolina candidate to call for an increase in the state’s gas tax in the aftermath of this month’s “Floodmaggedon,” a record-setting deluge which prompted widespread flooding across the state.

Stavrinakis said he voted against the tax hike in the S.C. House because it wouldn’t have sent enough money to Charleston.

We agree with his position … if not his rationale.

As we’ve said throughout the race, Charleston has been the recipient of more than it’s fair share of road funding.  In fact one powerful state Senator recently said lawmakers in Columbia, S.C. had been “force feeding asphalt to the coast, while the Upstate and many rural areas starve.”

Indeed … and the Interstate 526 project all these politicians are tripping over themselves to support is a total boondoggle.

Joe Riley has served as Charleston’s mayor since December 1975.  The 72-year-old politician announced last year that he would step down at the end of this – his tenth term.

The election to replace him is scheduled for November 3.

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