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LEGISLATIVE LEADER WON’T GIVE UP SEAT DURING CONGRESSIONAL CAMPAIGN …

S.C. Speaker pro tempore Tommy Pope isn’t taking the bait …

Hours after one of his opponents in the race to fill U.S. Rep. Mick Mulvaney‘s congressional seat challenged Pope to follow his lead and resign from the state legislature, the veteran lawmaker made clear he’s staying put.

“I was elected to represent the people of House District 47 and will continue to uphold my commitment to work faithfully on their behalf,” Pope said in a statement. “Further I was selected by my peers in Columbia to provide leadership as Speaker pro tempore of the House.”

Well, that settles that …

One of Pope’s competitors for the S.C. fifth congressional district – S.C. Rep. Ralph Norman – resigned from the S.C. House of Representatives this week, saying he wanted to focus all of his energies on the upcoming campaign.

Pope is taking a different tack …

“While I will campaign tirelessly throughout South Carolina’s fifth congressional district, there are many important issues coming before us in Columbia,” the ex-prosecutor added.  “My peers expect my leadership and the families in my district deserve to be represented. I won’t let them down.”

Pope, 54, had planned to run for governor of South Carolina in 2018 – however he reconsidered after Henry McMaster ascended to that post.

In addition to Norman and Pope, former state Republican party chairman Chad Connelly of Prosperity, social conservative activist Sheri Few of Lugoff, businessman and State Guard leader Tom Mullikin of Camden and attorney Kris Wampler of Indian Land are also seeking the GOP nomination for the fifth district.

Banner via Travis Bell Photography

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