With few exceptions mere mention of the above and the typical Republican rhetoric was offered as proof of competence.
The Three candidates were Mark McBride from Horry County, Bobby Witherspoon from Columbia, and Timothy Carnes from the Up-State.
Mark McBride is an overly confident young man who has mayoral experience but has much too simplistic a view of international relations and US foreign policy. His remark that the only thing we would lose if N. Korea took over S. Korea is the Hyundai showed a complete lack of sophistication on how important US projection of strength is. The US and its allies provide the Order and Protection necessary for the world to function as well as it does. The US is the light, and Mark McBride’s suggestion that we pull back our troops from around the world and disengage is not only simplistic but also dangerous. This talk got a lot of attention via Ron Paul. What Ron and Mark fail to see or REFUSE to see is that our globally interconnected economy requires that we project power. The protection of S. Korea from the N. Koreans (Read: CHINA) is as important as securing trade routes and securing energy. It is through the projection of STRENGTH that the US and the World have enjoyed the relative calm we have seen since WWII.
Perhaps what Mr. McBride is suffering from is a lack of perspective. There is less conflict in the world now than there has ever been. More governments practice some form of democracy than ever before. Mark McBride and Ron Paul perhaps need to turn off the sensationalist 24 hour news channels and invest in some real research into what actually goes on in this world and what roll the US plays in it. Basing foreign policy on hyperbole and sensationalism is dangerous. On a scale from one to ten I give McBride a -2-.
Tim Carnes has no previous political experience and I like that! He is an accomplished business man. He also touted that he was active in his Church. I like that but am always cautious of politicians asking for my vote by trying to connect with me on a religious level. Tell me you support the protection of my right to worship and leave it at that. Mr. Carnes has some great ideas but many are unpolished. Calling for less government and then calling for two or three constitutional amendments giving the government more control of our lives is not Conservatism, it’s double talk. We are suffering still from giving the Christian Right too much control over the Conservative movement. We have forsaken the Conservative call for less Federal Government when it benefits an objective like Abortion or Gay Marriage. Mr. Carnes struck me as a brilliant man, so I was disappointed that he had not seen this disconnect in his policy stances. I had occasion to speak with him at length after the meeting and was very impressed with his command of the issues. I think Mr. Carnes could be our next Senator from SC if he runs more as a TRUE CONSERVATIVE and less as a Republican. I give Mr. Carnes -6- out of a possible 10.
Buddy Whitherspoon is sharp and caring candidate from Columbia with a long conservative history. Buddy unfortunately had trouble verbalizing his vision. I have met with Mr. Whiterspoon and discussed Alternative Energy, US foreign policy and Conservatism. I know he “gets it”. The problem is he did not show that he “got it” to the Conservatives gathered in Cheraw this night. He used the check-list approach and merely hit the necessary items to be considered a Republican. I give Buddy a -4- on the night but a -7- based on the fact that I know his stances even if he had trouble that night expressing them.
The voters of the United States and South Carolina are dying to vote for a true Conservative. It was obvious from the three candidates’ presentations of their policies that they either do not care what the voters want, are not aware of what the voters want, or just are not truly conservative enough to give the voters what they want (Mark McBride).
I will be following these candidates and expecting much more in the near future. The Primary is in June. That’s right, June. Most voters don’t even know that it is time to vote again in a few months and incumbent Sen. Lindsey Graham is counting on that! Finally let me say that Graham was represented that night by two ladies from his office in Rock Hill. I found both combative and merely “yes men” that could not answer difficult questions. This is typical of how Lindsey had treated SC. I would vote for two of these three lacking candidates over Senator Graham (Whitherspoon and Carnes). His lack of attentiveness to constituents and his liberal political alliances warrant his immediate removal from office.
Don’t forget to register to vote, be an informed voter! Look for my upcoming column on TRUE CONSERVATISM.