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Primary Candidates Strangely Quiet

A Column by the Editor
web posted April 30, 2012

COLUMN – Local candidates up for a primary bid are noticeably quiet leading up to the June Primaries. The two that stand out are SC State Senator Shane Massey (R-Edgefield) who faces a June battle with John Pettigrew, also of Edgefield, and County Council District 4 candidates Betty Butler and Tracey Freeman. 20-year incumbent Willie Bright has bowed out of the race. Both races could have a huge impact on local representation and yet there is not a peep from any of the campaigns as we enter the month of May.

In the major local race for the June primary is the County Council District 4 seat left open by former Vice-chairman Willie Bright backing out of the race following a Republican take-over of the County Council in 2010.

Former County Council Vice-chair Betty Butler (D-Bettis Academy) has thrown her hat into the ring as has Planning Commission member Tracey Freeman, also a Democrat. Both will face off in a newly drawn district that runs just north of Merriwether all the way to downtown Edgefield and all of Trenton.

However, neither candidate has issued a press release beyond their initial announcement of seeking office.

Likewise in the SC State Senate race, Sen. Shane Massey and Republican challenger John Pettigrew Jr. remain devoid of local campaigning.

With just six weeks of campaigning before the June 12 Primaries the candidates seem to remain out of public view. It is a strange configuration based on past elections.

It is expected that local races between parties in November will not kick off until August, along with non-partisan School Board seats that come open the same month, but for inter-party campaigns to sit on the sidelines so late in the campaign in strikingly unusual.

Are some candidates over confident or are others not mounting a serious campaign?

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