Mr. Graham caused another stir at a candidate forum on Friday when he declared that Black folks “can go wherever on this state” so long as they’re “conservative, not liberal.” Critics rapidly known as out Mr. Graham, who’s white, for what they described as an try and dictate a suitable path for Black political leaders whereas debating Mr. Harrison, who’s Black, in a state with a protracted and troubled racial historical past.
Mr. Harrison could have the cash to amplify that or every other previous Graham feedback. On a drive Mr. Loftis made final week from Columbia to Charleston, the Harrison marketing campaign “owned each billboard from right here to there,” he stated. However given the state’s conservative bent, he added, “I’m unsure cash can take Jaime excessive.”
Nonetheless, the truth that the race is aggressive in any respect speaks to the extreme vitality amongst Democrats, and to how Republican worries a couple of difficult 12 months have was fears of a nationwide landslide. South Carolina, which voted for Mr. Trump in 2016 by greater than 14 factors, has not elected any Democrat statewide since 2006 and has not despatched a Democrat to the Senate since 1998, when Ernest F. Hollings was re-elected.
Mr. Harrison’s big fund-raising complete additionally speaks to Democratic voters’ particular anger at Mr. Graham, who has change into one in every of Mr. Trump’s most vocal defenders and, as chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, is main the cost to verify Decide Barrett.
Mr. Harrison has been campaigning closely throughout the state, together with in “deep Republican areas that Democrats often write off,” stated Tameika Isaac Devine, a Democrat who serves on the Columbia Metropolis Council.
And, flush with money, Mr. Harrison has been capable of blanket the state with promoting.
“You can not flip in your TV and never see Jaime, you can’t go on the web and never see Jaime, you can’t open your mailbox and never see Jaime,” stated State Senator Dick A. Harpootlian, a Democrat who represents the Columbia space.
Mr. Harpootlian, a former chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Social gathering, stated he voted for Mr. Graham six years in the past as a result of the senator was then a bipartisan reasonable.