Three weeks ago our news outlet ran a report on the South Carolina first congressional district race – highlighting the endorsement of Republican nominee Nancy Mace by former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley.
“Polling we have seen in certain GOP-heavy parts of this district is not encouraging,” we wrote at the time.
Earlier this month, a new district-wide poll from Greenberg Quinlan Rosner (GQR) – which is working for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) – showed Cunningham leading Mace by a shocking thirteen percentage points.
And yes, this is a district U.S. president Donald Trump won by thirteen points just four years ago …
Talk about a seismic shift …
According to the survey, which was leaked to Politico, Cunningham was drawing the support of 55 percent of likely voters in this coastal, Lowcountry district compared to just 42 percent for Mace.
And while Cunningham conceded that Trump is still leading Democratic nominee Joe Biden in the district, he said the gap was shrinking.
“It’s definitely not the margin that he had last time against Hillary,” he told Politico’s Ally Mutnick.
That Cunningham has opened up a sizable lead over Mace is not surprising. Not only is it consistent with other polling we have seen, experts have been saying this seat is slipping away from the GOP for some time.
In early September, Larry Sabato of the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics shifted this race from “toss-up” to “leans Democratic.” Toward the end of September, the Cook Political Report followed suit and moved the race from “toss-up” to “lean Democratic” as well.
Despite his lead, Cunningham has remained on the offensive – attacking Mace over her support for the so-called “Fair Tax,” which would replace all federal income taxes, payroll taxes, gift taxes and estate taxes and replace them with a 23 percent levy on retail sales.
The proposal is revenue neutral, meaning it is a tax shift – not a tax cut.
Cunningham (below) has also attacked Mace for running a “bikini website.” That’s a reference to this news outlet – which it is fair to say was a bit more risqué in its fare once upon a time.
(Click to view)
(Via: Joe Cunningham/ Facebook)
Mace was a part-owner of FITSNews for several years, however she sold her ownership stake in the company in 2013 prior to launching an unsuccessful campaign for the U.S. Senate against Lindsey Graham.
Mace has had no connection to the website since – although she and our founding editor Will Folks have remained friends.
Mace has blasted Cunningham for voting with U.S. House speaker Nancy Pelosi nearly 90 percent of the time – part of a broader effort to nationalize the race that has clearly fallen flat. She has also sought to pin the possible closure of the Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) at Parris Island, S.C. on her Democratic rival.
“He didn’t do anything to protect it,” Mace said during a recent press conference. “So it’s on his watch, and nobody else’s.”
Cunningham won the first district in 2018 in large part because the outgoing lawmaker – former governor Mark Sanford – refused to support Republican nominee Katie Arrington (who vanquished Sanford in the June 2018 GOP primary election).
Demographic trends are also at work, as the district is simply nowhere near as “Republican” as it once was …
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