Lindsey Graham Avoids Runoff, beats tea party candidatesSubmitted by dormouse on Tue, 06/10/2014 - 21:35
South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham won his Republican primary on Tuesday, cruising past the 50-percent threshold to avoid a runoff against his tea party-inspired challengers.
The 58-year-old senator faced six Republican challengers in the Palmetto State, but none of those opponents got much traction or raised enough money to become viable.
With 56 percent of precincts reporting, Graham was at 59 percent — well ahead of state Sen. Lee Bright, with 14percent. Rounding out the field were businessman Richard Cash at 8 percent, pastor Det Bowers at 7 percent, businesswoman Nancy Mace at 6 percent, attorney Bill Conner at 5percent and attorney Benjamin Dunn with just 1 percent.
Graham has only token Democratic opposition for a third term serving the deep-red state.
Temperamentally, Graham is just not a bomb-thrower. He’s a conciliatory figure with friends across the aisle who often votes with party leaders.
But many tea party activists believe a deep-red state like South Carolina should have a senator in the mold of Texas’ Ted Cruz or Utah’s Mike Lee. They were upset by Graham’s role on immigration reform negotiations, past support for doing something about climate change and votes to confirm both of President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominees. In fact, eight county parties have voted to censure Graham in recent years for working with Democrats.