South Carolina’s Mace gets a boost from McCarthy, Gabbard

Republican U.S. Representative Nancy Mace of South Carolina gets a boost from House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and other political figures in the final week before the midterm elections as she seeks a second term to represent his growing district.

On Wednesday, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez, the Cuban-American politician who is currently president of the United States Conference of Mayors, will appear with Mace at an event in Mount Pleasant, near Charleston, the campaign said. of Mace to the Associated Press.

A day later, former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, who represented Hawaii as a Democrat but recently announced she was quitting the party, hosts a campaign rally with Mace at a restaurant in Mount Pleasant.

On Saturday, McCarthy, R-Calif., will take on Mace at a fundraiser in downtown Charleston that is expected to raise $100,000, according to his campaign.

“These leaders represent a broad spectrum of voters – Republicans, Democrats and independents – and they are here to help remind Lowcountry voters that Nancy Mace is an independent voice for them in Washington,” the AP told the AP on Monday. Mace’s campaign manager, Austin McCubbin. .

The appearances come as Mace prepares to take on Democrat Annie Andrews, a Charleston-area pediatrician who has described Mace as too soft on gun safety, portraying herself as an advocate for children.

Mace campaigned on bipartisan legislation during his first term, but also aimed to counter Andrews’ children’s defense by accusing the doctor of ‘child abuse’ for allegedly supporting gender-affirming surgeries on minors. In their only debate, Andrews responded by saying that she did not support such surgeries for children, but that she supported “evidence-based medical care, with parental consent, for adolescents struggling with gender identity issues.

The 1st District, which stretches along much of South Carolina’s southern coast, is the only one of South Carolina’s seven districts to have recently changed hands. In 2018, Democrat Joe Cunningham became the first Democrat in decades to flip one of the state’s seats from red to blue, although he lost the seat to Mace two years later.

But for this year’s election, the lines have been redrawn, a reconfiguration that may have made the region more likely to remain under GOP control than in past elections. It is also among the 10 fastest growing districts in the country, with population shifts playing a role in the political makeup of the region.

Mace rebuffed an intense primary challenge from Katie Arrington, a former member of the State House with the backing of former President Donald Trump, who had solicited ‘any interest from the good and SMART America First Republican Patriots’ to run against a slate of incumbent House Republicans, including Mace.

Although Trump campaigned against Mace in his primary, due to his criticism of him after the Jan. 6 uprising, he ultimately congratulated Mace after his primary victory.

McCarthy has campaigned for GOP House candidates across the country as control of the chamber hangs in the balance of the midterm elections. He was in South Carolina earlier this year to headline a fundraiser for the state’s Republican Party and endorsed Mace in his 2020 run, praising “Mace’s tireless work ethic, his conservative background and ability to get things done.”

Suarez, who won a nonpartisan re-election last year, is a registered Republican and recently raised the possibility of running for president in 2024, portraying himself as unafraid to thwart his party’s establishment. Noting that he did not vote for Trump in 2020, Suarez also criticized Florida GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis — whom he also did not support during his 2018 campaign — pushing back against DeSantis’ decision to vote. preventing local communities from instituting mask mandates during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Gabbard, who sought the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination before quitting the party earlier this year, took to the trail with a number of Republican candidates in the midterm ballot, including Utah Sen. Mike Lee , Michigan Governor hopeful Tudor Dixon, Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake and Nevada Senate candidate Adam Laxalt.

Early voting is underway in South Carolina and will continue through Saturday.

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Meg Kinnard can be reached at http://twitter.com/MegKinnardAP.

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Follow AP coverage of the 2022 midterm elections at https://apnews.com/hub/2022-midterm-elections.

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