#SC4: Will Shannon Pierce Ante Up?

Upstate congressional candidates keeping an eye on businesswoman’s filings …

By far the most intriguing candidate in the race for South Carolina’s fourth congressional district (map) is Shannon Pierce

The Upstate businesswoman is unconventional on every level: Her striking beauty, her inspiring background and her brazen disregard for political conformity.

We profiled Pierce’s nascent political ambition in this piece last month … prior to her becoming one of thirteen announced candidates for the seat being vacated by fourth-term U.S. congressman Trey Gowdy.

That’s right … thirteen candidates.

Think she’ll distinguish herself?  We do …

“Standing 5-foot-10, with the sleek facial features of a young Brooke Shields and the statuesque body of a runway model, Pierce immediately stands out from the field,” we wrote.

Of course when she officially entered the #SC4 race, we noted that Pierce wasn’t just a pretty face – that she had “a compelling personal narrative to keep people’s attention” once she attracted it.  She’s also a departure from the political norm in terms of her corporate success – having founded a profitable health care company in 2004 after spending ten years as a nurse at St. Francis Bon Secours.

Pierce’s booming business means she has the ability to finance her own candidacy … if she wants to.

Does she want to? 

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So far, no …

On Pierce’s inaugural federal campaign finance disclosure, she reported raising just over $33,000 in individual contributions.  After spending just under $14,500, Pierce had roughly $19,000 on hand – as of March 31.

Pierce’s rivals are closely watching her filings – eager to see if and when she makes the decision to invest in her own candidacy.

If she does that, Pierce immediately becomes one of the top tier candidates in this race – vying with state senator William Timmons, Upstate radio host Josh Kimbrell, state representative Dan Hamilton, pastor Mark Burns, former state senator Lee Bright, small businessman James Epley and former Greenville County GOP chairman Stephen H. Brown for one of two spots in a “Republican” runoff election.

With thirteen candidates seeking this seat, a runoff election is inevitable.

GOP voters head to the polls across South Carolina on June 12.  In races in which no candidate receives a majority of the ballots cast, runoff elections between the top two vote-getters will be held on June 26.



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