BLUFFTON, S.C. (WSAV) — Joe Cunningham helped welcome several dozen people to the grand opening of the Bluffton Democratic Club Tuesday afternoon.
He gave the crowd a list of reasons why he should be the Democratic challenger for Governor in the Palmetto state.
“It’s time to legalize marijuana, tax it, and use that tax revenue to give our teachers a raise. Fix our roads, fix our infrastructure, and it’s time for common sense gun safety,” Cunningham said. “Have background checks…the vast majority of South Carolinians, look, I’m a gun owner, I have my conceal weapon permit, but we can protect the second amendment and have common sense gun safety measures.”
Cunningham will be running against four other Democrats for the seat, including Mia McLeod, Carlton Boyd, Calvin Mcmillan and William Williams.
But Cunningham says, he’s confident about his position because of his track record representing the state in congress just four years ago.
“The people down here, they know me. They know that I went to congress and I did exactly what I said I was going to do. We passed a bill, a bipartisan bill that banned offshore drilling, and I was ranked one of the most independent and most effective members of congress, and that’s the kind of leadership I want to take to the governor’s mansion,” Cunningham explained.
Justin Jarrett, President of the Bluffton Democratic Club admits it’ll be an uphill battle getting a Democratic candidate elected in a historically red state like South Carolina.
But points to southern states like Georgia and North Carolina that have voted blue in past elections as reasons for optimism.
“If you look at the numbers over the decades, you know, it hasn’t been really good for Democratic candidates here in South Carolina but, we certainly have seen those numbers trending in a certain direction,” Jarrett said. “Obviously, Joe Cunningham won the 1st congressional district just four years ago so we’re not that far removed from that, and if you look at the numbers in the statewide races they’ve been a lot closer than you might think.”
Election Day in South Carolina is set for Tuesday, June 14.