Seeking his first full term, incumbent U.S. Sen. Tim Scott faces four challengers — North Charleston Democrat Thomas Dixon, American party candidates Jim Hinkle and Rebel Michael Scarborough, and Bill Bledsoe, who is running as a candidate for both the Libertarian and Constitution parties.
In the U.S. House of Representatives, District 1 incumbent Rep. Mark Sanford will go head to head with state Rep. Jenny Horne in a June primary election for the Republican nomination. The winner of that election will face Charleston Democrat Dimitri Cherny and third-party candidates Michael Grier Jr. and Albert Travison.
Nine Charleston-area officials are running unopposed for seats in the state House and Senate. They are Sens. Chip Campsen and Margie Bright Matthews and Reps. Jim Merrill, Lee Hewitt, David J. Mack III, Wendell Gilliard, J. Seth Whipper, Peter McCoy, and William Crosby. The remaining Lowcountry contests look to be a bit more competitive.
In the state Senate, District 34 incumbent Raymond Cleary III will not seek re-election. Republicans Reese Boyd, Joe Ford, Stephen Goldfinch, and Dick Withington will all vie for the open seat.
The battle over District 37 will be between incumbent Sen. Larry Grooms and Mark Heath of Hanahan. District 38 Sen. Sean Bennett will seek re-election, challenged by fellow Republican Evan Guthrie. A five-way battle will take place for the open District 41 seat between candidates Culver Kidd, Tim Mallard, Roy Maybank, Joe Qualey, and Sandy Senn.
District 42 will be a showdown between Democratic candidates Robert Ford and state Sen. Marlon Kimpson, while Republicans Paul Campbell Jr. and Tony Coleman will contend for District 44.
Over in the state House of Representatives, North Charleston Democrat and City Paper columnist KJ Kearney will go up against fellow Democrat Ray Lloyd, Republican incumbent Samuel Rivers Jr., and Republican challenger Steven Smith for the seat in District 15. Democratic candidate Damian Daly and Republican candidates Katie Arrington and Carroll Duncun will all make run at the seat left vacant by Rep. Jenny Horne as she challenges Sanford.
Charleston Rep. Chip Limehouse will not be seeking re-election for his District 110 seat. Six candidates have signed up to take his place, including lone Democrat Alice Wakefield and Republicans Eddie Phipps, Trey Harrell, Russell Guerard, Will Freeman, and William Coqswell Jr.
District 112 will see a showdown between incumbent Rep. Mike Sottile and Patrick Cloud. Democratic candidate Bob Aubin and Republican Lin Bennett will both seek the District 114 seat. Incumbent Rep. Mary Tinkler will not seek re-election. Rep. Robert Brown hopes to defend his District 116 seat against fellow Democrat Eric Mack, and Republicans Charles Glover Sr. and Carroll O’Neal.
Finally in the state House, the race for District 119 will be between incumbent Rep. Leon Stavrinakis hoping to fend off Republican Lee Edwards.
Hope everyone is buckled in and ready for the long haul because November is still a ways away.
The deadline for South Carolina candidates to file for this November’s elections has come and gone, and now we know who is in the running.