State House

South Carolina Freedom Caucus Leader Speaks Out

Group’s vice chairman, RJ May III, shares his thoughts on escalating GOP civil war …

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Last week saw another major escalation of the civil war within the “Republican” party in South Carolina – which has been fought on multiple fronts in recent years as rival factions seek to gain the upper hand within the Palmetto State’s supermajority party.

The latest offensive tied to this intra-party war? A six-figure, dark money assault waged by the “Republican” establishment against the conservative S.C. Freedom Caucus – a group which holds approximately twenty of the 88 “Republican” seats in the S.C. House of Representatives.

These lawmakers were expelled from their party earlier this year after refusing to sign a ‘loyalty oath.’ Now they are being targeted in their districts by a shadowy special interest group – one sending out mail pieces, text message blasts and social media missives accusing these lawmakers of “holding our state back.”

I invited state representative RJ May III – the vice chairman of the Freedom Caucus – to sit down and talk about these attacks, which highlight the growing influence of this “conservative core” of lawmakers.

“Columbia is broken – and I’m glad that we’re starting to see a culture change in Columbia,” May told me. “The people’s house no longer belongs to the people. It belongs to special interests and powerful politicians and it’s time we change that and return it back to the people that we serve.”

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May said “the way the system is set up in Columbia is to keep conservatives down.”

In an effort to change that system, the Freedom Caucus recently filed a lawsuit which seeks to allow the organization to legally raise money, hire staff, promote their message and play a role in upcoming election campaigns.

Oh, and to push back against all the negative attacks raining down on them …

May discussed the establishment smear campaign, saying “my constituents and the constituents of other Freedom Caucus members see right through it.”

“I have had more calls and text messages from people that I don’t know telling me ‘Hey, I know this is B.S. – keep up the good fight,’ than anything I’ve done before,” May said. “They might have overestimated their abilities to connect with the electorate on that one.”

As I noted last week, expect the intra-party fighting to escalate even further during the 2024 primary season as the Freedom Caucus seeks to defend its recent gains in the House – and potentially add to its numbers. Also don’t be surprised if these battles spill over into the 2024 ‘First in the South’ GOP presidential primary election.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR …

Will Folks on phone
Will Folks (Brett Flashnick)

Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children.

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8 comments

Ralph Hightower Top fan April 18, 2023 at 9:40 am

May told me. “The people’s house no longer belongs to the people. It belongs to special interests and powerful politicians and it’s time we change that and return it back to the people that we serve.”

That’s a load of crap. It has always belonged to the special interests and politicians.

Reply
Reality April 18, 2023 at 11:12 am

You mean the Christo-Fascist Caucus?

Good luck with all the childish infighting!

Reply
Nanker Phelge April 18, 2023 at 12:01 pm

Freedumb Caucus

Reply
SoEyeSee April 18, 2023 at 12:18 pm

I see the liberals on here figured out that the majority RINOs in the Legislature are on their side.

Reply
Reality April 18, 2023 at 1:18 pm

You people are crazy and make no sense.

But keep up all the infighting and who’s a RINO stuff!

Reply
Thanks! April 18, 2023 at 1:30 pm

I love all this Freedumb Caucuses!

They just steer normal voters to elect non-crazy candidates. They feed the next Blue Tsunami with their extremists views and constant fighting with other less extreme Republicans.

Do not stop anytime soon, suckers!

Reply
#WalkAway April 25, 2023 at 12:11 am

SC actually had a Red Wave last year. Look it up. Or maybe you’re not from here and just trolling? The Freedom Caucus is the best thing that’s happened to SC since hush puppies.

Reply
Keep the crazy on the DL April 18, 2023 at 8:52 pm

Notice how Fits”News” or this radical conservative never mention what their police goals are or what sets them apart from the other Republican they are fighting with?

That’s because they are very extreme right-wing policies that most people want nothing to do with.

Reply

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