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Kevin Bryant’s Homecoming




S.C. lieutenant governor Kevin Bryant will return to the place that launched his political career on Monday – addressing the Anderson Republican Party, an organization he led from 1997-2001.

“Anderson always will be my foundation,” Bryant wrote in an email to supporters announcing his homecoming speech.

The 50-year-old statewide official was first elected to represent S.C. Senate District 3 (map) in 2004 – and reelected in 2008, 2012 and 2016.  He became lieutenant governor last month as part of a controversial executive succession arrangement, although we gave him the benefit of the doubt during that drama because he’s always been a reliable vote in the Senate on behalf of South Carolina taxpayers.

Which brings us to our next point …

Bryant’s ascension to the lieutenant governor’s office means his seat is now vacant, which means a special election must be held to fill the remainder of his term (which expires in 2020).

So far five candidates have filed for the seat: Former GOP State Rep. Don Bowen, liberal local official Carol Burdette, attorney James Galyean, businessman Thomas McFadden and former Democratic State Rep. Johnny Tucker.

All are running as Republicans. And others may soon join them, including social conservative activist (and former U.S. Senate candidate) Richard Cash.

Filing for this race closes at noon on February 21, with partisan primary elections scheduled to be held on April 11.  In the event runoffs are necessary, those would be held on April 25 – with the special election itself scheduled for May 30.

Which of these contenders is worth a look?  Well, we know Burdette is a totally unacceptable choice.  And we know Bowen is not only a fiscal liberal, but his name is reportedly among those included in the still-secret pages of a December 2013 S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED) report.

That document serves as the basis for the ongoing investigation into public corruption at the S.C. State House.

That leaves three credible choices, in our view … although at this point we don’t know enough about Gaylean, McFadden or Tucker to say which one of them would advance the best interests of the citizens and taxpayers of this particular district.

We look forward to learning more about them as this race takes shape, though.

For those of you interested in attending, Bryant’s address will take place at Concord Community Church (620 Concord Road) in Anderson, S.C. this coming Monday at 7:00 p.m. EST.

Banner via Bob Jones University