Spartanburg Herald Journal: Jaime Harrison makes pitch for change in Washington at Wade’s in Spartanburg

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Jaime Harrison, Democratic candidate for an U.S. Senate seat representing South Carolina, believes change in leadership is needed.

He is challenging incumbent Sen. Lindsey Graham for the seat in 2020. Harrison told a group of supporters during a meeting Friday at Wade’s Restaurant, South Carolina deserves better leadership in Washington.

“The polls are tightening,” Harrison said. “Our campaign is raising good money, and we have so much energy right now. Nobody thought we would be within two points right now.”

A poll released by the The Post and Courier and administered by Change Research showed Harrison trails Graham by two points in the race. The poll was conducted from Dec. 6-11. Forty-seven percent of likely general voters said they will vote for Graham while 45 percent of likely general voters said they will vote for Harrison with 9 percent of likely general voters undecided, according to poll results.

Harrison criticized Graham’s leadership.

“All politics is local and this guy hasn’t done a public town hall in the state in three years,” Harrison said. “He wants to focus on things in D.C. and get a camera in front of his face. I don’t care about any of that.”

Harrison said he wants to return power to the people.

“We are about bringing hope back to this state,” Harrison said. “What I want to do is make sure the ladders of opportunity are still down for people in South Carolina.”

Finding jobs in rural areas of the state continues to be difficult for some and more needs to be done to bring better access to high-speed WiFi, Harrison said. Harrison added he is in favor of a gun registry.

Harrison said, if elected, he would work to address struggling schools and make funding road repairs a priority. He encouraged voter registration drives to continue, especially in the African American community.

“There are almost 400,000 unregistered African Americans in South Carolina,” he said. “There are 40,000 unregistered African Americans in the Spartanburg and Greenville areas.”

Sara Hamilton of Spartanburg heard Harrison speak for the first time and was impressed.

“He was everything I expected and more,” Hamilton said. “I liked that he talked about Medicaid expansion and wants to bring people together across a broad spectrum regardless of party affiliation, class, race and income. We need to have a senator who cares about the people again.”

Spartanburg resident Joyce Finkle said she believes Graham’s leadership isn’t what it used to be.

“Lindsey Graham is not the person we originally elected,” Finkle said. “He doesn’t represent me and I am with Jaime now and so grateful he is is running.”

Harrison, 43, served as the chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party from 2013 to 2017. He launched his campaign in May to challenge Graham for the seat in 2020.

Following four terms in the U.S. House of Representatives, Graham was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2002. In 2008, he was elected to a second term in office and was elected to a third term in 2014.

Harrison criticized Graham’s leadership.

“All politics is local and this guy hasn’t done a public town hall in the state in three years,” Harrison said. “He wants to focus on things in D.C. and get a camera in front of his face. I don’t care about any of that.”

Harrison said he wants to return power to the people.

“We are about bringing hope back to this state,” Harrison said. “What I want to do is make sure the ladders of opportunity are still down for people in South Carolina.”

Finding jobs in rural areas of the state continues to be difficult for some and more needs to be done to bring better access to high-speed WiFi, Harrison said. Harrison added he is in favor of a gun registry.

Harrison said, if elected, he would work to address struggling schools and make funding road repairs a priority. He encouraged voter registration drives to continue, especially in the African American community.

“There are almost 400,000 unregistered African Americans in South Carolina,” he said. “There are 40,000 unregistered African Americans in the Spartanburg and Greenville areas.”

Sara Hamilton of Spartanburg heard Harrison speak for the first time and was impressed.

“He was everything I expected and more,” Hamilton said. “I liked that he talked about Medicaid expansion and wants to bring people together across a broad spectrum regardless of party affiliation, class, race and income. We need to have a senator who cares about the people again.”

Spartanburg resident Joyce Finkle said she believes Graham’s leadership isn’t what it used to be.

“Lindsey Graham is not the person we originally elected,” Finkle said. “He doesn’t represent me and I am with Jaime now and so grateful he is is running.”

Harrison, 43, served as the chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party from 2013 to 2017. He launched his campaign in May to challenge Graham for the seat in 2020.

Following four terms in the U.S. House of Representatives, Graham was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2002. In 2008, he was elected to a second term in office and was elected to a third term in 2014.

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