South Carolina's 1st congressional district special election, 2013

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A special election for South Carolina's 1st congressional district was held on May 7, 2013 to fill the seat following the resignation of U.S. Representative Tim Scott, who was appointed to the United States Senate by Governor Nikki Haley to fill the seat previously held by Jim DeMint. [3] [33] DeMint resigned from the Senate on January 1, 2013 to accept a position as president of The Heritage Foundation.

The filing period for candidates lasted between January 18 and January 28, 2013. The special primary elections took place on March 19, 2013. [3] [5] Businesswoman Elizabeth Colbert Busch won the Democratic Party primary and Mark Sanford, the former Governor of South Carolina who held the seat from 1995 to 2001, advanced to a runoff with former Charleston County Councilman Curtis Bostic for the Republican Party nomination. Prior to the runoff, 14 Republicans and one Democrat signed the "Reject the Debt" pledge put out by the nonpartisan Coalition to Reduce Spending. Curtis Bostic's refusal to sign the pledge became a campaign issue appearing in a Daily Caller editorial [11] as well as a National Review piece authored by Deroy Murdock, which called Sanford the "taxpayer's choice" in the race. [12] In the runoff election on April 2, Sanford defeated Bostic. Eugene Platt, a James Island Public Service Commissioner, was nominated by the South Carolina Green Party. In the general election on May 7, Sanford received 54% of the vote, beating Colbert Busch (45%) and Platt (1%).

Republican primary

Candidates

Declared

Declined

Primary

Results

2013 Republican Primary – South Carolina's 1st Congressional District Special Election [33]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Mark Sanford 19,854 36.91% N/A
Republican Curtis Bostic 7,168 13.33% N/A
Republican Larry Grooms 6,673 12.40% N/A
Republican Teddy Turner 4,252 7.90% N/A
Republican Andy Patrick 3,783 7.03% N/A
Republican John Kuhn 3,479 6.47% N/A
Republican Chip Limehouse 3,279 6.10% N/A
Republican Ray Nash 2,508 4.66% N/A
Republican Peter McCoy 867 1.61% N/A
Republican Elizabeth Moffly 530 0.99% N/A
Republican Tim Larkin 393 0.73% N/A
Republican Jonathan Hoffman 360 0.67% N/A
Republican Jeff King 211 0.39% N/A
Republican Keith Blandford 195 0.36% N/A
Republican Shawn Pinkston 154 0.29% N/A
Republican Ric Bryant 87 0.16% N/A

Runoff

Polling

Poll source Date(s) administered Sample size Margin of error Curtis Bostic Mark Sanford Other Undecided
March 22–24, 2013 648 ± 3.9% 40% 53% 7%

Results

2013 Republican Primary Runoff – South Carolina's 1st Congressional District Special Election [33]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Mark Sanford 26,127 56.59 N/A
Republican Curtis Bostic 20,044 43.41 N/A

Democratic primary

Candidates

Declared

Withdrawn

  • Bobbie Rose, former teacher and nominee for the 1st district in 2012 [33]
  • Martin Skelly, businessperson [33]

Declined

Primary

Results

2013 Democratic Primary – South Carolina's 1st Congressional District Special Election [33]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Elizabeth Colbert Busch 15,802 95.86% N/A
Democratic Ben Frasier 682 4.14% N/A

Green Party

Candidates

On the Ballot

  • Eugene Platt, James Island Public Service Commissioner and 1990 Democratic Party candidate for the 1st district (won primary) [5] [5]

Declared

  • Larry Carter Center, political activist [5]

General election

On May 7, 2013, Mark Sanford won the election and took the seat vacated by U.S. Representative Tim Scott. [2] [5]

Polling

Poll source Date(s) administered Sample size Margin of error Mark Sanford (R) Elizabeth Colbert Busch (D) Eugene Platt (G) Undecided
May 4–5, 2013 1,239 ± 2.8% 47% 46% 4% 4%
April 29 – May 1, 2013 650 ± 5% 46% 46% 8%
April 19–21, 2013 796 ± 3.5% 41% 50% 3% 5%
March 25–27, 2013 500 ± 4.4% 44% 47% 7%
March 22–24, 2013 1,175 ± 2.9% 45% 47% 8%
  • ^ Internal poll for Elizabeth Colbert Busch Campaign

Results

2013 1st Congressional District of South Carolina Special Election [2]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Mark Sanford 77,466 54.04
Democratic Elizabeth Colbert Busch 64,820 45.21
Green Eugene Platt 690 0.48
Voter turnout 31.55%

County results

Vote breakdown by county
Mark Sanford Republican Elizabeth Colbert Busch Democrat Total
County Votes % Votes % Votes
Beaufort 17,896 52.60% 14,871 43.71% 34,020
Berkeley 15,137 60.90% 8,670 34.88% 24,856
Charleston 32,019 50.18% 29,056 45.54% 63,809
Colleton 272 69.21% 109 27.74% 393
Dorchester 12,276 59.72% 7,440 36.19% 20,557
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