Anger over shutdown politics could be boosting third party in SC - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

Anger over shutdown politics could be boosting third party in SC

Posted: Updated:
Dr. Jim Rex explains the American Party’s platform at its State Fair booth Friday. Dr. Jim Rex explains the American Party’s platform at its State Fair booth Friday.

Voter anger and frustration over the recent political fighting in Washington over the government shutdown could be boosting the effort to create a third political party in South Carolina. The American Party is trying to get the 10,000 petition signatures it needs to get certified for the 2014 elections.

The party has a booth set up at the State Fair. Former state education superintendent Dr. Jim Rex has been working the booth, asking registered voters to sign the petition. The party has close to 6,000 signatures so far.

"We thought we'd pick up a couple thousand here at the State Fair, but surely what's happening in Washington has made people more aware than perhaps they were before about how broken the system is," he says.

Rex is a former Democrat, and he and Dr. Oscar Lovelace are two of the organizers of the new party.  Rex told one petition signer, "Oscar Lovelace is a Republican who ran against Mark Sanford in 2006. So you have a former Democrat, former Republican saying this isn't working. We've got to try something different."

A recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll may show why the petition effort is more successful than expected. The poll found that 60 percent of Americans would vote to get rid of every person in Congress, even their own representatives, if they could. That's the highest rate ever for that poll.

Voter Bobby Campbell signed the petition at the State Fair and said, "I'm pretty upset, but I'm ready for a change."

Dlynn Curcio also signed the petition, saying of recent events in Washington, "I just think it's irritating and I just stopped watching it because I don't like what's going on."

But Rex was sure to point out to potential petition signers, "If you decide to sign, you're not supporting the party because you don't even know who our candidates are yet; you're simply saying you like the idea of another choice."

He says the party does have about 30 people who are interested in running as American Party candidates if it gets certified.

"Money's going to be a challenge. I know that," he says. "I mean, we're going up against arguably the two largest, well-funded organizations on the planet. But, you know, a good idea doesn't cost as much to explain and sell as a bad idea. So I don't think we have to compete dollar and dollar. I think people are ready for a change, a different approach."

One of the American Party's principles is that it would legislate and govern from the middle. It would also impose term limits on all of its candidates. You can read its entire platform here.

The South Carolina Democratic Party wouldn't comment on the new party's efforts, but a spokesperson said state Democrats had seen an increase in support because of the shutdown, which it blamed on Republicans.

The South Carolina Republican Party said voters have shown they support the state Republican Party and its policies.

  • 2 women, 4 kids hurt in Lake Keowee jet ski wreck

    2 women, 4 kids hurt in Lake Keowee jet ski wreck

    Monday, September 1 2014 2:32 PM EDT2014-09-01 18:32:52 GMT
    Authorities say two jet skis collided on Lake Keowee, injuring the two drivers and four children who were riding along. Department of Natural Resources spokesman Robert McCullough said one of the jet skis ran over the other one around 7 p.m. Sunday on the lake near Cane Creek. McCullough says the two women driving the jet skis were critically injured and taken to the hospital by helicopter. Each woman had two children behind her. McCullough says the children weren't as badly injured. McCullou...
    Authorities say two jet skis collided on Lake Keowee, injuring the two drivers and four children who were riding along. Department of Natural Resources spokesman Robert McCullough said one of the jet skis ran over the other one around 7 p.m. Sunday on the lake near Cane Creek. McCullough says the two women driving the jet skis were critically injured and taken to the hospital by helicopter. Each woman had two children behind her. McCullough says the children weren't as badly injured. McCullou...
  • South Carolina political campaign goes to the dogs

    South Carolina political campaign goes to the dogs

    Monday, September 1 2014 2:30 PM EDT2014-09-01 18:30:41 GMT
    Henry McMaster & Boots from new TV adHenry McMaster & Boots from new TV ad
    In some ways, political campaigning has gone to the dogs in South Carolina. With dogs in almost half of American homes, a number of South Carolina politicians feature their pet dogs in television ads, on websites and on Facebook pages. The best-known seems to be Boots, the bulldog who appears with Republican Henry McMaster in his TV ads for lieutenant governor. College of Charleston political scientist Gibbs Knotts says dogs are part of American culture more than ever before and a dog in an a...
    In some ways, political campaigning has gone to the dogs in South Carolina. With dogs in almost half of American homes, a number of South Carolina politicians feature their pet dogs in television ads, on websites and on Facebook pages. The best-known seems to be Boots, the bulldog who appears with Republican Henry McMaster in his TV ads for lieutenant governor. College of Charleston political scientist Gibbs Knotts says dogs are part of American culture more than ever before and a dog in an a...
  • 2 children die when boat capsizes on Lake Hartwell

    2 children die when boat capsizes on Lake Hartwell

    Monday, September 1 2014 2:27 PM EDT2014-09-01 18:27:01 GMT
    Dawn ThompsonDawn Thompson
    Authorities say a 9-year-old and a 5-month-old boy have died after a boat capsized on Lake Hartwell. The Anderson County Coroner's Office told local media outlets that the older boy, Christian Henderson, was pulled from the water and could not be resuscitated, while divers found the baby, Timothy Dragoo, about four hours after the boat flipped. Neither child was wearing a life jacket. Department of Natural Resources spokesman Robert McCullough says the pontoon boat was pulling into a dock on ...
    Authorities say a 9-year-old and a 5-month-old boy have died after a boat capsized on Lake Hartwell. The Anderson County Coroner's Office told local media outlets that the older boy, Christian Henderson, was pulled from the water and could not be resuscitated, while divers found the baby, Timothy Dragoo, about four hours after the boat flipped. Neither child was wearing a life jacket. Department of Natural Resources spokesman Robert McCullough says the pontoon boat was pulling into a dock on ...
Powered by WorldNow

210 W. Coleman Blvd.
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

Telephone: 843.216.4875
Fax: 843.881.3410
Email: news@wcbd.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.