Entries in Charleston (3)


South Carolina TV Wars: Mark Sanford vs. the World

(former) South Carolina governor website (CHARLESTON, S.C.) -- Mark Sanford wants you to know that he has learned from his mistakes and will try to change Washington if he gets there.

That’s the message of his first TV ad, now visible on cable airwaves in Charleston, S.C., where the former governor is attempting the political comeback of the decade. With more ads to come, Sanford has reserved $160,000 worth of TV time before the March 19  primary, according to his campaign.

Sanford, who famously resigned the governorship following the revelation of an extra-marital affair with an Argentinian woman, faces 15 other candidates in his race to reclaim the state’s First Congressional District, which he represented from 1995 to 2001, before assuming the governorship. Just about every kind of local pol has come out to oppose him: current and former state legislators; a sheriff; a personal-injury lawyer; a former JAG officer; a former Secret Service agent; a school-board trustee; and a local high school teacher, to name a few.

“Our message is simple: I’ve learned a lot over the past few years about grace and forgiveness, but one thing hasn’t changed. And that’s my absolute commitment to watching out for taxpayers and getting spending under control,” Sanford wrote in an email to supporters announcing the new ad.

Sanford, 52, is the odds-on favorite, according to a Republican source in the state, but he’ll need to reach more than 50 percent in the primary to avoid a runoff. With so many other candidates, that could be tough. The runoff would be held April 2.

The former governor wasn’t first to launch an air attack, by any means.

One of his more promising opponents seems to be Teddy Turner, son of the media magnate Ted Turner. A high school economics teacher in Charleston, Turner had been running ads before he filed for the race in mid-January, and he ran them during both the AFC and NFC championship NFL games, according to a source in the state.

Turner is relatively unknown as a political presence in the state, and his ads have introduced him to voters. In one that debuted Feb. 12, Turner takes a subtle jab at Sanford: “What I’m not is a career politician,” Turner says to the camera.

Another explains that his experience as a CNN news cameraman in the Soviet Union made him into a conservative.

Two other candidates are airing TV ads in Charleston.

Chip Limehouse, running as an economic conservative, bluntly announces he’s running for Congress and promotes his conservative views and state-budgeting experience in a 30-second introductory spot.

Another focuses on World War II vets who oppose Obama.

More directly related to Sanford’s prospects, former state Sen. John Kuhn is running a 30-second ad that could stand in as a PSA for marital fidelity.  In it, Kuhn proclaims his “personal responsibility, faith in God, devotion to my family” and informs viewers that “I married my college sweetheart” while the words “committed to family” flash on screen.

Sanford didn’t need to begin airing TV ads before anyone else – voters already know who he is – but he’s not the only one who can make a splash on TV or sustain a media campaign in this crowded race.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


In Charleston, Romney Vows to Keep America Safe

TIM SLOAN/AFP/Getty Images(CHARLESTON, S.C.) -- Aboard the USS Yorktown aircraft carrier in Charleston Harbor Thursday, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney stood flanked by retired World War II aircrafts as he promised a group of veterans that he will strengthen the country’s military and work to ensure the safety of the nation if elected president.

“I want to make sure we do not shrink the military budget,” said Romney. “We all recognize America needs to economize but I don’t believe we can economize on securing our nation and protecting our citizens and assuring our work remains safe and free for us, for our children and theirs."

“And I’ll protect the United States of America by protecting a strong military,” he said.

Romney spoke Thursday on the 888-foot hangar adorned with World War II memorabilia that he toured prior to his address. The doors of the hangar remained open during his speech, revealing views of Charleston and dolphins playing in the water below.

Ahead of Friday’s foreign policy speech Romney is scheduled to deliver at The Citadel in South Carolina, Romney previewed some of the specific steps he would take if elected to improve the strength of the U.S. military.

“We’re going to have to increase our investment in our Navy,” Romney said, as the crowd of 50 veterans cheered. “Secondly, our Air Force. The Air Force is smaller and older in terms of the average age of the equipment than it’s been since 1947 when the Air Force was put into place. That simply can’t be allowed.”

Romney said he’d also like to add 100,000 active duty personnel to eliminate the high-rotation schedule many of the active troops are on, and said he wants to make sure veterans are treated “the way veterans deserve to be treated.”

He also spoke briefly about how the threats around the world make it that much more important for our military to remain strong.

Referring to Pakistan as a “very fragile nation,” Romney said the country’s nuclear weapons, if obtained by the wrong hands, “could change the world.”

Shaking hands with veterans after his speech, Romney was approached by one man who said he hopes the former governor will bring the respect back to the country’s military.

"We need a Ronald Reagan," said the veteran. “I’m not comparing you to him…but we need to bring the respect back to the country.”

“He was a great man, what a great leader Ronald Reagan was; I sure love that guy,” Romney responded.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Texas Gov. Rick Perry Entering 2012 Race

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(CHARLESTON, S.C.) -- Texas Gov. Rick Perry is about to shake up the 2012 race as he makes his candidacy official Saturday in Charleston, S.C., almost nine months after the Texan vowed he was not interested in pursuing a presidential run.

Perry, the longest-serving governor in the country who has accounted for 37 percent of all jobs created since the recession, will use his announcement to set the agenda for his presidential bid, focusing heavily on the need to fix the economy.

"Our nation cannot and must not endure four more years of aimless foreign policy," Perry will say, according to prepared remarks. "We cannot and must not endure four more years of rising unemployment, rising taxes, rising debt and rising energy dependence on nations that intend us harm. It is time to get America working again."

Perry's announcement will come at the RedState Gathering, a convention of more than 300 conservative bloggers, before a backdrop of American flags. Portraits of President Ronald Reagan and President Theodore Roosevelt adorn the room, along with paintings of the Lincoln Memorial, Statue of Liberty and George Washington crossing the Delaware River with troops.

The speech has long been on the governor's calendar, but it wasn't until this week that it turned into a platform to launch a presidential bid.

By announcing in South Carolina Saturday, the Texas governor is throwing out the conventional political playbook as most of the Republican presidential field focuses on the Ames straw poll in Iowa.

But he won't leave the Hawkeye State completely ignored, as he plans to travel New Hampshire and Iowa by the end of the weekend, rounding out a tour of three key early states in the caucus and primary process.

Following his announcement, he will meet with state GOP leaders before flying to New Hampshire for a house party hosted by Republican state Rep. Pam Tucker.

The Texas governor will travel to Waterloo, Iowa, Sunday to speak at the Lincoln Day Dinner fundraiser held by the Black Hawk County Republican Party, and he'll run into his first fellow candidate on the trail, Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., who announced Thursday that she, too, will speak at the dinner in her hometown.

Perry's entrance into the 2012 race has been met with fascination by both the media and Republicans dissatisfied with the current Republican field.

Perry boasts a strong economic and job creating record, a message that's resonating with voters this election cycle. The Texas governor has recently polled near the top of presidential picks.

Just one week ago, Perry, a self-described "man of faith," led 30,000 people in a day of prayer and fasting for the country.

Perry has been a long-time opponent of the establishment in Washington and advocate of states' rights, a position that will resonate with Tea Party voters. In his book, Fed Up!, Perry criticized big government, called for greater freedom for state governments, and blamed Washington politicians for hurting America.

Perry is often compared to President George W. Bush, a fellow Texan governor who ascended to the White House, but Perry has attempted to distance himself from this Bush.

"He's not George W. Bush. Rick Perry is nothing like George W. Bush," Paul Burka of Texas Monthly said. "Perry's probably the best electoral production that Texas has produced since LBJ."

Perry, the son of cotton farmers, hails from a small town in west Texas called Paint Creek. Growing up, Perry earned the honor of Eagle Scout and met his future wife, Anita Thigpen, at a piano recital in elementary school. He married her more than 20 years later. Perry and his wife have one son, Griffin, and one daughter, Sydney.

Perry attended Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas, where he majored in animal science, was a yell-leader and a member of the Corps of Cadets.

Upon graduation in 1972, Perry was commissioned in the U.S. Air Force and flew C-130 tactical aircraft in the U.S., Middle East and Europe. He was discharged with the rank of captain and returned to West Texas to help on his family ranch in 1977.

After years as a cotton farmer, Perry jumped into politics in 1985 when he entered the state House of Representatives as a conservative Democrat. Perry supported Al Gore's presidential bid in 1988 and even spearheaded his election efforts in the state of Texas.

In 1989, Perry switched parties and became a Republican. The following year he ran and won in the election for agriculture commissioner, a role in which he promoted the sale of Texas farm produce to other states and foreign nations.

After serving two terms as agriculture commissioner, Perry ran for lieutenant governor and became the state's first Republican lieutenant governor since Reconstruction.

Upon George W. Bush's election to the presidency, Perry assumed the Texas governorship in 2000. He has since won three re-elections as governor, even defeating popular Republican Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison in the primary election in 2010. Perry also serves as the president of the Republican Governor's Association.

Perry will enter the presidential race undefeated, having never lost an election in his three decades of working in government.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio