U.S. Senate Race

US Senate hopeful had $31,000 stake in SC blogger’s site

jself@thestate.comOctober 10, 2013 

Nancy Mace

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Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Nancy Mace received about $18,500 for selling her ownership stake in a website whose editor, Will Folks, said GOP Gov. Nikki Haley had an affair with him, a claim Haley denied.

Mace is one of three announced challengers to U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham in the June 2014 GOP primary.

FITSnews still owes Mace $13,000 for her ownership stake, which Mace’s Charleston communications and marketing firm received instead of cash for design and web development work done for the site, according to a statement from Mace’s campaign.

Mace reported in financial disclosures to the U.S. Senate that FITSnews, a politics-and-rumor site, paid her $13,500 for her “equity stake” in the business. She also reported an agreement to be paid an additional $18,000 for her stake in the site. Mace’s campaign said she has received $5,000 toward the $18,000 owed.

Mace also reported receiving payments of more than $5,000 for working on the campaigns of Republicans Lee Bright, a state senator from Spartanburg and another Graham primary challenger, and U.S. Sen. Tim Scott while he was in the U.S. House. Mace also was paid by U.S. Reps. Mick Mulvaney of Indian Land and Tom Rice of Myrtle Beach, and state Sens. Tom Davis of Beaufort, Larry Grooms of Berkeley and Kevin Bryant of Anderson, all Republicans.

Mace no longer works for political candidates or elected officials, focusing instead on her own campaign, her campaign said.

A website called GOPwrite.com, whose authors are anonymous, posted Mace’s report online Thursday, criticizing her ties to FITSnews.

Bright was the only candidate in the race for the U.S. Senate seat held by Graham not to file a report. Bright asked for an extension, which was granted. The deadline for filing is 30 days after becoming a candidate or May 15, whichever is later.

Campaign spokesman Michael Stevens said Bright filed for an extension to “ensure that all compliance and transparency standards are met. ... It’s a fairly complicated process, so it takes some time to gather all the pertinent details.”

Graham’s other GOP primary challenger, Easley businessman Richard Cash, reported earning $68,000 in salary and a $5,758 distribution from managing two businesses that he owns: a used-car sales business and a fleet of ice cream trucks. Cash said those figures were for 2012 through May 2013.

Cash reported in July that he had stock holdings in 13 companies, mostly oil and electric businesses. Five of those holdings were valued at $50,001 to $100,000 each, and eight were valued as being worth from $1,001 to $15,000 apiece. Cash also reported savings valued up to $105,000, and said he receives income of about $1,100 monthly from a rental property.

Mace reported earning $225,978 in fees from consulting from 2012 to Sept. 11 of this year, and $1,040 for “sales” of a book she wrote about her experiences at The Citadel. She also reported IRAs and other savings worth between $68,000 and $195,000, and monthly income between $1,625 and $5,250 a month from three rental properties in Charleston and Atlanta.

Incumbent Graham of Seneca reported holdings in mutual funds and other assets worth more than $245,500. Additionally, within the broad reporting ranges that candidates and incumbents use, he reported having between $33,000 and $145,000 in checking or savings accounts. Graham also reported having property worth between $500,000 and $1 million.

Reach Self at (803)771-8658

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