Several more confirm they are running for SC House District 69
Lexington, SC (Paul Kirby) – Several people have confirmed over the last few weeks that they are running for the house seat recently vacated when Rep. Rick Quinn, Jr. (R) resigned and pleaded guilty to misconduct in office. The official opening for the special election filing was December 29th.
Quinn, Jr. represented District 69 at the statehouse which includes parts of the town of Lexington and West Columbia. Quinn, Jr. is said to have cut a deal with prosecutors in their investigation of a number of irregularities in our state’s government. His father, powerful political consultant Richard Quinn, Sr., had also been charged, but those charges were dropped as long as the younger Quinn pleaded guilty and his father agreed to cooperate with the government investigators in the probe.
Many in the know in South Carolina’s political circles believe that there’s a great deal more to come once Richard Quinn starts talking. His firm, commonly know as RQA, represented such state political giants as Senator John Courson, Gov. Henry McMaster, Attorney General Alan Wilson, U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, and U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson, as well as Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin, the lone Democrat of the bunch. Several of his former clients have already been indicted for campaign finance irregularities.
Lexington attorney Michael Weaver has sent out a press release that included a video regarding his platform. It was filmed in Lexington on the side of busy Sunset Blvd. to showcase one of the planks in that platform, the need to address the traffic problems from the state’s perspective. The town of Lexington has already begun a plan to address many of those issues because it looked as if the state had their traffic alleviation plan in park.
In addition to Weaver, Lexington School District One’s Board of Trustees Member Anne Marie Green has already filed. Green has not completed her first four-year term on the board, and prior to that was an activist in school and education related issues on some grassroots, in the schools, ways. She and her husband still have school aged children and education and the quality of our teachers and schools are big issues for her. She is a graduate of Lexington High School and is the non-profit director of the Autism Academy of South Carolina.
Alan Ray, a trained cosmetologist from Lexington, has also said he is running in the race. He is a longtime political activist who has helped with many notable campaigns throughout the years. He is well versed on the ins and outs of the goings on at the statehouse, and has been a staunch, conservative operative for decades.
Chris Wooten, a former US Marine, SC state trooper, and owner of the Bodyshop Athletics Fitness Center, has also announced he’ll run. He did so by literally running the eleven miles from Lexington to the statehouse to show that he’s not only fit, but eager to claim the job left open by Quinn. He can be both affable and intense, and is very passionate about serving the public in many ways as his record of service in other ways proves.
Several other names have been batted around, but at this point, it’s unclear if any of these others have filed. They include Lexington Town Councilman Steve Baker, a well-educated, well-liked businessman who is the comptroller of his family’s business, Baker Collision Express. Baker has promised he would make a decision whether or not to run, and let the residents of the area know sometime in the first few days of 2018.
Others who are said to have expressed an interest in running are former Lexington County Councilman Smokey Davis, GOP activist, attorney, state employee, and Congressman Joe Wilson’s former chief of staff Dino Teppara, and a few others.
Whoever plans to file, better get on the ball, so to speak! They have until noon on Saturday of this week to do so. The actually primary will be held on February 27, and the election is scheduled for May 1st. There’s also a good possibility that there may be a runoff. If that’s necessary. It would be held on March 13th. These are partisan races, but this is Lexington County. There are still a few Democrats in the county, but for the most part they keep their heads low and out of sight.
Keep in mind that this is a special election to fill Quinn’s unexpired term. The whole process will have to be redone again in the spring of this year for the regular, full term of the seat.