Two York County-area lawmakers have endorsed John Warren of Greenville, who hopes to unseat Gov. Henry McMaster in the June 26 Republican runoff for governor.
U.S. Rep. Ralph Norman (R-Rock Hill) and Sen. Wes Climer (R-York) announced their support for the GOP gubernatorial candidate and Greenville businessman on Monday in Rock Hill.
"Do we want a governor who sells access to his appointments, who views government or public service as an opportunity to cash in on his political connections...," Climer said. "Or do we want a businessman who's offering to bring to bear his private sector experience to solve our problems, which are many, at the state government level."
Norman and Climer had previously shown their support for then Republican primary candidate and Mount Pleasant labor attorney Catherine Templeton.
"I'm going with the conservative, the businessman, the Marine," Climer said. "I am going with John Warren."
McMaster won 42 percent of the GOP primary vote, falling well short of the 50-percent-plus-one majority needed to avoid a runoff.
Lt. Gov. Kevin Bryant of Anderson and Templeton have also endorsed Warren.
Norman said he is supporting Warren because he is a businessman and an outsider.
"He makes business decisions," Norman said. "He's an outsider. He doesn't owe anybody anything. He is a true conservative."
Members of the Rock Hill chapter of Rolling Thunder, an organization focused on veteran issues, also joined Monday to show their support for Warren.
Warren said he, Norman and Climer represent "the new conservative reform movement of South Carolina."
"We have a lot of problems here in South Carolina," Warren said.
Warren referred to South Carolina's ranking as last in education, money lost with Santee Cooper, road problems and continued funding of Planned Parenthood.
"We've got to have someone who is a true conservative, who is an outsider and who can apply conservative business principals to come up with solutions to these complex problems," Warren said. "I look forward to working with Sen. Climer to get a lot of these solutions passed in the House and in the Senate."
McMaster has also received support from local leaders. His supporters include Rep. Bruce Bryant, York County Sheriff Kevin Tolson and Solicitor Kevin Brackett of York County, along with Sen. Greg Gregory, Lancaster County Sheriff Barry Faile and Lancaster County Solicitor Randy Newman, a release states.
“Last Tuesday, the people of the fifth congressional district showed that they understand South Carolina is winning and that even more unprecedented prosperity and success for our state is right around the corner. I couldn’t be more grateful for their support and the support from this remarkable group of local leaders from the district,” McMaster said in a prepared statement.