Greenville, South Carolina attorney Lucas Marchant submitted more than 12,000 signatures to the S.C. Election Commission (SCVotes.org) on Monday in his bid to appear on the November 2018 ballot against incumbent S.C. thirteenth circuit solicitor Walt Wilkins.
Assuming at least 10,000 of these signatures are certified as valid residents of this Upstate judicial circuit – which includes Greenville and Pickens counties – then Marchant will be qualified to appear on the ballot against Wilkins in the November 6 general election.
That’s a big deal …
Wilkins opened the door for a potential challenger this spring when he agreed to serve as lieutenant governor in the event voters chose Lowcountry labor lawyer Catherine Templeton as their next chief executive. Templeton was defeated in the June 12 GOP primary election, but Marchant continued his signature-gathering campaign against the three-term incumbent.
His efforts have prompted a rebuke from Greenville County “Republican” chairman Nate Leupp, who believes Democrats are trying to “get their guy on the ballot as an ‘independent’ petition candidate.”
Specifically, Leupp accused Marchant of using “democratic operatives” to assist him in his petition campaign – operatives who allegedly lied to GOP voters in an effort to get them to sign the document that will put his name on the ballot in November.
“It is my understanding that some attempts to get signatures have been made under false pretenses, going so far as to suggest Walt Wilkins is not even running for solicitor,” Leupp warned GOP voters last month. “That is clearly not the case.”[timed-content-server show=’2018-Jan-17 00:00:00′ hide=’2018-Jul-31 00:00:00′]
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Marchant wasn’t the only solicitor candidate who turned in signatures this week …
According to reporter John Monk of The (Columbia, S.C.) State newspaper, local attorney John Meadors submitted signatures in his bid to run in November against Byron Gipson, the Democratic nominee for the state’s fifth judicial circuit. Gipson handily defeated scandal-scarred incumbent solicitor Dan Johnson in a Democratic primary election on June 12.
No “Republicans” filed for the seat.
We’re told Meadors submitted 13,000 signatures. Again, if 10,000 of these are verified as valid residents of Richland and Kershaw counties – a.k.a. the fifth judicial circuit – then Meadors’ name will appear on the November 6 ballot alongside Gipson’s.
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