Yesterday, this news site exclusively reported that Greenville, South Carolina businessman John Warren was mulling a bid for governor of the Palmetto State in 2018.
Looks like he’s made up his mind …
Warren submitted paperwork with the S.C. State Ethics Commission (SCSEC) on Friday to run for governor, dropping $50,000 of his own money into the newly opened campaign account.
In and of itself, that’s not necessarily a guarantee that he will enter the race, but multiple sources familiar with Warren’s thinking told us he has decided to take the plunge.
Warren also decided to launch a spiffy new gubernatorial website – which strikes us as pretty compelling evidence that he’s “in.”
(Click to view)
Courtesy of that website, here’s Warren’s statement regarding his moves …
“We need to clean up Columbia and end the sickening culture of corruption that infects our state government. Political insiders and career politicians have handed the keys to our state over to the lobbyists and special interest groups and forgotten about the people I swore an oath to protect. I am a former Marine Captain, successful businessman, and conservative outsider who is not beholden to anyone. As a veteran who led over 300 combat missions, I can tell you that when I take on a mission, I always see it through. And if I run for governor, my mission will be to clean up Columbia and end the big-government gravy train that has done nothing but line the pockets of political insiders at the expense of the people. That is why today I have filed to explore a run for the Republican nomination for Governor.”
“When he runs, he will win,” one Upstate GOP advisor told us recently.
Looks like he’s running …
A Marine veteran who served two tours of duty in Iraq, Warren is the founder and CEO of Lima One Capital – which bills itself as a “specialty mortgage finance company.” As we noted yesterday, he reportedly had his sights set on the state’s fourth congressional seat when it appeared that U.S. congressman Trey Gowdy would be receiving a federal judicial appointment.
Gowdy has instead been elevated to a key chairmanship in the U.S. House, and it doesn’t appear as though he will be going anywhere anytime soon.
“John Warren is one of those people who is good at everything he does,” one of his business associates told us. “He’s extremely smart, has excellent social skills, and great instincts. If he decides to run he will be a player. Guaranteed.”
Warren would become the fifth announced candidate for the “Republican” gubernatorial nomination, joining beleaguered incumbent Henry McMaster, up-and-coming challenger Catherine Templeton, socially conservative lieutenant governor Kevin Bryant and former lieutenant governor Yancey McGill.
Two Democrats – Afghan War veteran and former S.C. House minority leader James Smith and Charleston, S.C. businessman Phil Noble – are seeking their party’s nomination.
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