U.S. Sens. Lindsey Graham and Tim Scott, along with U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn, deserve another term representing our area. All three have worked hard for voters and appear headed for easy victories against challengers who, for the most part, are not well-known and lack funding. Collectively, the three candidates offer a complimentary approach to governance that fits well with Lowcountry values.
Graham, a Seneca Republican, is a leader that his colleagues take seriously thanks to his command of federal issues, most notably national defense, and his willingness to serve as a conciliator, seeking out common ground with those on the other side. It's a trait seen far too rarely in today's divisive, intensely partisan Congress.
The incumbent is working now to find middle ground with Democrats, offering a plan in which Republicans would agree to eliminate some tax deductions if Democrats would agree to reform entitlement programs, the biggest contributor to the nation's alarming debt level. A natural problem solver, Graham understands that both sides must be willing to give if we are to solve the nation's big problems, including the devastation sequestration is wreaking on federal agencies, including the Department of Defense, charged with taking on ISIL, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, working to stop the deadly Ebola virus.
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Graham has also been responsive to local issues. Following a 2013 incident in which Alice Boland, a Lady's Island woman with a well-documented court history of mental illness, took a gun to a Charleston school, Graham led the charge to prevent others with such histories from purchasing guns. While this common sense bill has yet to pass, Graham deserves credit for fighting hard.
He has, however, been successful in his work to fund the Port of Charleston's harbor deepening project, a certain economic boost that will reverberate throughout the state once complete. And his enthusiastic advocacy for the county's military installations and the F-35B fighter jets will serve our area well in future rounds of base realignment and closures.
Scott, a Charleston Republican picked in December 2012 by Gov. Nikki Haley to complete former Sen. Jim DeMint's term, is a newcomer to the U.S. Senate. This is his first run for the seat that he holds.
But already, he has racked up wins, including passage of his Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act that should give job-seekers easier access to a more efficient workforce development system. Scott has also focused on S.C. vets, including a statewide veterans job training initiative that seeks to connect former military personnel with employers.
And if offshore drilling is to be done, Scott is offering the best approach we've seen yet, giving South Carolina's governor and those of other affected states veto power over the process and ensuring affected states receive a percentage of the revenue generated.
We're equally impressed with Scott's dedication to constituent service that, he said, is modeled after that of the late Sen. Strom Thurmond, his advocacy for term limits and his support for the Export-Import Bank that backs loans to international companies that buy American-made products. Commercial aircraft giant Boeing outside of Charleston is one of the bank's biggest proponents as it builds 787s for foreign customers.
Beaufort County was removed from District 6 from 2000 to 2010. The Nov. 4 election marks only the second opportunity since then residents in the northern part of the county can vote for the district's longtime representative, Clyburn. It's the first chance for Jasper County voters to do the same.
While we disagree with the Columbia Democrat in several areas, we appreciate his focus on tourism, the life blood of the Lowcountry. His biggest accomplishment on that front was the creation of the Gullah-Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor that is helping to preserve the rich history of the state's sea islands.
Clyburn, the state's most powerful Democrat who serves as the assistant Democratic leader, has also been a supporter of the RBC Heritage Presented By Boeing. In fact, he's participated in the tournament's pro-am for many years. And since the 1970s, his extended family has stayed on Hilton Head Island each Christmas holiday season.
Clyburn has also been a surprise friend to the nuclear energy industry, which provides thousands of jobs in South Carolina.
And while he's known as a sharp critic of the state's Republican leadership, Clyburn agrees that Haley deserves more information from federal officials about the 162 immigrant children apprehended at the nation's southern border and sent to Beaufort and Greenville counties.
"I've always believed transparency is good," Clyburn said.
We have too, and wish the three candidates luck Nov. 4.