Recently, various groups within the 1st Congressional District gathered to vet the 16 Republican candidates vying for the seat recently vacated by Tim Scott after his appointment as senator by Gov. Nikki Haley. The gathering was attended by tea party members, 9-12 Project members and other like-minded conservative groups.
Although no individual candidate was endorsed, the process identified the more conservative candidates. It serves as a voting guide only. To view the scorecard and candidate biographies, visit www.beaufortteaparty.webs.com.
Today, various organizations are attempting to co-opt the tea party message of social and fiscal conservatism and to control the vote. I urge voters to beware of them and to be aware that there's no such thing as a "tea party primary" in this race.
The Beaufort Tea Party will not participate, endorse or recommend participation in such a "primary." We do not endorse candidates, but seek to educate the public as to the issues and candidates' political stances. Our group believes that when voters make their own determination, they will be more likely to exercise their right to vote.
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I urge voters to be cautious and to view all candidates equally, without the biased influence of organizations or individuals who present themselves as the definitive voice of the tea party, Republican, Democratic, Libertarian or Green parties.
And I urge everyone to exercise his or her right to vote in the March 19 primary and May 7 general election.