SC PoliticsHeadlines

South Carolina Politics Watch: John Warren Is Gearing Up

As Henry McMaster struggles, his top 2018 rival is preparing to reengage …

Upstate businessman and former GOP gubernatorial candidate John Warren is reportedly preparing to make a “major announcement” regarding the formation of a new “conservative organization” in South Carolina, sources familiar with the upcoming reveal tell this news outlet.

Warren – who nearly knocked off incumbent governor Henry McMaster in the 2018 GOP gubernatorial primary – will reportedly launch his new group sometime this week. Details about the endeavor were not immediately available, and Warren did not immediately respond to messages seeking additional information about his forthcoming announcement (or the group it intends to unveil).

According to our sources, Warren “has been talking to activists and donors statewide for the past few weeks” – taking as many as a hundred meetings during that stretch of time, we are told. One of these sources confirmed the combat veteran was forming a new conservative political action committee, and had retained well-known Republican fundraiser Drea Byars to help him organize and manage the group.

Byars is well known for her work with clients including U.S. senator Tim Scott and former U.S. congressman Trey Gowdy.

“John and his wife are prepared to put significant dollars behind (the) new organization,” a source familiar with the announcement told this news outlet.

Warren certainly has the dollars to spend …

(Click to view)

(Via: John Warren for Governor)

As we reported last fall, the 41-year-old Marine sold his majority ownership stake in Lima One Capital – the Greenville, South Carolina-based specialty mortgage firm he founded in 2011. That sale reportedly netted him nine figures.

One of Warren’s advisors told us at the time of the sale that the former (and future?) candidate was “willing to put close to $15 million into his next race.”

What office will he seek, though?

As we reported last week, McMaster’s struggles with the electorate are becoming more pronounced with each passing day. Literally. Worth recalling? Our post noted Warren was at the top of “any list of prospective challengers to McMaster.”

A 2003 graduate of Washington and Lee University, Warren joined the Marines in 2004. An infantry officer, he deployed to Iraq in 2006 for seven months and led over 300 combat missions against insurgent fighters there – earning the rank of captain.

Warren and his wife have three children and reside in Greenville, S.C.

This news outlet endorsed Warren in his 2018 runoff battle against McMaster and we have been eager to see what sort of future he might chart for himself in Palmetto politics. We have long argued that a candidate with his own money and base of support – one who is not beholden to the special interests that rule Columbia – would be ideally positioned to advance the sort of bold reforms required to make South Carolina more competitive on multiple fronts.

We are not the only ones watching Warren, either. McMaster’s political advisors have been anxiously awaiting his reemergence on the statewide scene, one source familiar with the governor’s reelection bid told us.

In other words, we expect to see some gubernatorial pushback to Warren’s forthcoming reveal …

UPDATE || More on Warren’s announcement …




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