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SC Politics

Revenge Of The Swamp: Nancy Mace Targeted In South Carolina

Push poll hints at coming campaign against incumbent congresswoman …

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South Carolina first district congresswoman Nancy Mace is being targeted by powerful establishment “Republican” interests in her bid for a third term in office, this media outlet has learned.

Is that a surprise to anyone? Of course not …

Mace drew the ire of the Washington, D.C. swamp two months ago when she joined seven other GOP lawmakers in voting to oust Kevin McCarthy from his role as speaker. Her response to the status quo’s criticism of her vote? She wore a scarlet letter to the U.S. Capitol.

Mace’s declaration of political independence drew rave reviews from our arch-conservative commentator, Prioleau Alexander.

“The Swamp has decided it’s time to try and cancel her,” Alexander wrote last week in a column defending Mace, whom he hailed as a rare “reach across the aisle Republican” who has repeatedly “said the quiet part out loud.”

But the Swamp’s cancel campaign is very real … and is already taking shape.

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This week, multiple voters in the first district received a “push poll” – or a survey intended to spread messages (both positive and negative) about officeholders or political candidates.

According to three different sources who received this call, it leveled multiple lines of attack against Mace – while touting two potential first district Republicans as alternatives to her in this coming spring’s GOP primary elections. The two would-be candidates referenced on the call? Former S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) director Catherine Templeton and New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) executive Joseph Semsar.

Both Templeton and Semsar reside in Mount Pleasant, S.C. The fourth-largest city in the Palmetto State, Mount Pleasant is located in heart of the first district – which includes the coastal Lowcountry region of the state. It contains Beaufort and Berkeley counties as well as parts of Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester and Jasper counties.

Templeton is a former gubernatorial candidate who most recently served as co-founder and ex-president of U.S. Brick. She has previous bureaucratic and political experience. In addition to her tenure at SCDHEC, she also briefly ran the S.C. Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (SCLLR) and was a candidate for the GOP gubernatorial nomination in 2018, losing to incumbent Henry McMaster.

Templeton recently sold her partnership interest in US Brick, fueling speculation that she might work full-time with either Nikki Haley or Tim Scott (on one of their respective presidential campaigns) – or finally run for the U.S. congress herself.

(Click to View)

Catherine Templeton listens to U.S. senator Tim Scott during a visit to U.S. Brick in Columbia, S.C. (Travis Bell Photography)

Templeton did not immediately respond to this media outlet’s requests for comment on the push poll. Sources familiar with her thinking said she is “listening” to overtures from interested parties as it relates to a possible first district campaign, but added “so are at least a dozen other people.”

According to sources who received the poll, it touted Templeton as “slashing government jobs” and “cutting the budgets” of her departments. It also credited her for helping land crony capitalist aircraft manufacturer Boeing and shared a story about her decision to choose life when a doctor suggested she abort one of her children during pregnancy.

As for Semsar, he served in three positions in the administration of former U.S president Donald Trump – including as undersecretary of the Department of Commerce. The push poll touted him being “on board with Trump’s trade policy” and also highlighted his service with Teach for America.

Semsar received his undergraduate degree from Clemson and his masters degree in public policy from Pennsylvania.

Will the bid to take Mace out be successful?

The 46-year-old Fort Bragg, N.C. native – the first woman to graduate from the formerly all-male Citadel military academy – is no stranger to staring down adversity. Or beating back well-funded political attacks. She was targeted for defeat in 2022 by Trump – and won the GOP primary anyway. She also cruised to a landslide reelection in the erstwhile competitive first district against a well-funded, credible Democratic rival.

As I noted earlier this year, Mace was already charting a principled, independent path prior to the McCarthy vote – going against GOP leadership on a big debt ceiling vote earlier this year.

“This bill had no limit on the debt ceiling at all,” Mace said in a video recorded after her vote. “It also put into law record high levels of spending created during the Covid pandemic era. To put that into law as your baseline spending going forward – I just can’t even imagine how we sold out our kids and grandkids.”

If Mace can frame the Swamp’s opposition to her along such principled fiscal conservative lines, expect her to continue to be successful in pushing back against efforts to oust her from her seat.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR …

(Travis Bell Photography)

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 and before that he was a bass guitarist and dive bar bouncer. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and eight children.

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11 comments

E Prioleau Alexander Top fan December 21, 2023 at 4:41 pm

Nancy offers conservative bona fides, but doesn’t vote the Party line… because there IS no party line in the GOP– They act like a bunch of drunk teenagers with access to Bill Gates’ jet and checkbook.

Republican voters are fortunately smart enough to read between the lines, and see that she’s a thinking conservative. She has access to information we don’t, bases her decisions on that info, then actually takes the time to explain her position.

Due to some hilarious gerrymandering, my street on the peninsula of Charleston is in Clyburn’s district. I had an impossible task I needed handled with the hellish VA, and I went to HER office. Her staff made the solution look easy.

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JustCallMeAva Top fan December 22, 2023 at 11:29 am

Yeah, we read that embarrassment of a fanboy column you “wrote” the other day. Personally, I think some of Nancy’s silicone has gone to her brain but maybe that’s why you like her so much—there’s zero intellectual challenge for you. It’s more like a guessing game which angle she’ll take today–but in the end, the answer is, whichever gets her on TV fastest. who knows who she is, what she is, or what she believes in, but one thing is for certain–she’s got a clean mind b/c she changes it so often. Whatever, she’s a joke in a state that has a high rate of jokes as elected reps.

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Frank December 21, 2023 at 5:37 pm

The swamp can’t attack her because she is part of the swamp. It’s just one swamp monster going after another. Republicans no longer have a moral or ethical center. They have fully embraced as their leader a man who has no morals, no ethics, and does not care what is good for this country. It’s all about what gets him more money, more power, and revenge on his enemies; even if he has to destroy the country to do it. It’s a sad state of affairs, but Nancy, like many Republicans, originally spoke the truth about Trump, but in the end, like McCarthy, she went crawling back and did the obligatory boot-licking and ass-kissing and was admitted to the swamp.

Vote the bastards out!

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JustCallMeAva Top fan December 22, 2023 at 11:25 am

Everything Trump touches, dies (metaphorically speaking). Eventually, the GOP will wake up from their 8 year Trump induced cult coma and dump him. But how many sane, intelligent GOPers will be left by then? My guess? ZERO, because right now they’re all in a contest to out-crazy and out-dumb one another.

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The Colonel Top fan December 21, 2023 at 6:11 pm

While her time at LLR went “okay”, Templeton’s tenure at DHEC leaves a lot to be desired. She was seldom in the office and made poor decisions when she made any. Her “founder status” of US Brick is debatable at best. US Brick started as Carolina Ceramics in 1939, Templeton was born in 1970. Maybe one needs to look in to who her people are in regards to US Brick…

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Jack Hinson December 22, 2023 at 10:55 am

Republicans, including Nancy Mace, remain silent, while Trump continues his assault on the US Constitution. He has said he wants to be a dictator, he has praised dictators, and he has said he will use the government to go after his political enemies. Now he doubles down with his continuing stolen election lie, saying, “A Massive Fraud of this type and magnitude allows for the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution”.

Donald Trump and the Republican party plan to eliminate the Constitution, if Trump is re-elected. That is the only explanation for their silence after statements like this. The only Republican speaking up is Liz Cheney, who responded, “Donald Trump advocates for the annulment of ‘all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution’ to overturn the 2020 election. This was his stance on 1/6 and continues to be his stance today. It is undeniable that Trump is an adversary of the Constitution.”

I do not agree with many of Liz Cheney’s policies, but at lest she is a loyal American, who will defend the Constitution and our freedom from would be dictators. Too bad people like Nancy and her Republican cohorts have no backbone at all.

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JustCallMeAva Top fan December 22, 2023 at 11:26 am

It’s a cult and Trump is their Jim Jones.

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Mark Houde Top fan December 22, 2023 at 9:52 pm

Mace continues to impress on many levels. My guess is attempts to take her down will end in failure.

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Michael Covert Top fan December 26, 2023 at 8:42 am

The genesis of this article is “Mace trying to be taken out by establishment”. Period. Put all of the other drivel aside and think about this for a second. It IS a plausible statement and the actions of the establishment in DC and around SC are hell bent on doing so. What is the “establishment”? , I have heard many say on my radio network. Establishment, elitists, globalists….the go-along-to-get-along crowd, are all being compared to having the same ethics as liberal progressive democrats.
There you go….someone actually has the cojones to put it in print.
If things are going to change, we MUST get back to real, constitutionally sound and ethical conservative principles. Is that Mace? Is that Templeton? Or is it this new fellow? I had the opportunity to get to know Nancy very well during my run against her and I also am fortunate to have talked with Templeton on many occasions during her run for Governor and then again afterwards about some Congressional tactics. I will concede this; Nancy is getting some respect on the Hill. I hope she stays true to her statement of Term Limits and then bows out.

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Broken Clocks December 26, 2023 at 8:58 am

“The establishment” took out the first man on Mars, George Santos too. Can you believe it?

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Kebert Xela December 26, 2023 at 8:56 am

I’m convinced there’s a completely alternate version of Nancy Mace that Will keeps referring to, one that hides behind the lady calling herself Nancy Mace in Congress who does nothing but pander and embarrass herself. Surely they aren’t one in the same? This could make for an interesting conspiracy novel, where some maverick legislator tries to bring down the Deep State who mobilized a doppelganger to tarnish her image.

Also hilarious is the manufactured consensus between Will and the cowboy wannabe, as if two nobodies from this blog agreeing about someone who used to be part of this blog means something.

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