Guest Editorial County Republicans have plenty to feel good about
While many Republicans were disappointed about the national election outcome on Nov. 6, you can take some comfort in the fact that the Berkeley County Republican Party has never been stronger.
Two of the County Party’s main goals are to grow the party base and get individuals who stand for conservative principals elected to office. This focus has paid huge dividends recently including on Nov. 6. For example:
• Mitt Romney received both more votes and a higher percentage of the Berkeley County vote than John McCain did four years ago. Romney’s voter percentage of 56 percent outpaced both Dorchester and Charleston counties and the state as a whole.
• Congressman Tim Scott garnered over 65 percent of the vote in Berkeley County, which was the highest percentage of any county in his congressional district;
• While the media pundits are talking about how the Republican Party needs to broaden its base and increase minority outreach, I am honored to say that Berkeley County is leading the nation on that front. I could not be more proud of my friend and Berkeley GOP Vice Chairman Samuel Rivers for being elected as the second African American Republican to the statehouse since Reconstruction. As a matter of fact residents of District 15 in Berkeley County are the only folks in the nation to be represented by an African American Republican in both the statehouse and in the U.S. Congress.
• Representative Eddie Southard defeated his Democratic opponent by 35 percentage points in the Statehouse District 100 race.
• Republicans hold every countywide office, along with six out of eight council seats, five out of six statehouse seats, three out of four senate seats, and the solicitor’s office;
• Ken Gunn was elected to Berkeley County Council by embracing the Berkeley County GOP’s platform of Open, Accessible and Fiscally Conservative governance as the cornerstone of his campaign.
• Berkeley County residents cast over 70,000 ballots on Nov. 6, which comfortably broke the record set four years ago while at the same time increasing our Republican percentage of the vote. This means that as the county population grows it has become more Republican, not less.
Our continued success in Berkeley County is not by chance or accident, it is the result of the hard work by dedicated members of the Berkeley County Republican Party and the Executive Committee. I want to thank them for their effort and commitment.
I also want to recognize Allen Weiss and Marty Housand. Both of these individuals answered the call and ran aggressive campaigns in heavily gerrymandered Democrat districts. While they may not have won their individual races, they tirelessly spread the Republican message of limited government and personal responsibility while making it clear that the Republican Party will not let any seat go unchallenged.
Moving forward, the Berkeley County Republican Party will continue to lead by example and set the standard for South Carolina in outreach and activism as we have no intention of resting on our laurels. Following the general election is the time when the parties traditionally reorganize and it is a great time to get involved. To find out how, please do not hesitate to email me at email@example.com or call (843) 628-2828.
Mr. Callanan is the Chairman Berkeley County Republican Party.