CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- “Joe can win! Joe can win!” chant hundreds at Tradesman Brewing Company on Wednesday.
Before the former Lowcountry congressman took the stage, he was introduced by a special guest: Sangaree Middle School 7th grader Ivy Ward.
While South Carolina hasn’t elected a Democrat into the Governor’s Mansion in nearly 20 years, former Lowcountry congressman Joe Cunningham says he’s going to change that.
“This is going to be a campaign that y’all can be proud of. We’re going to be honest, we’re going to be blunt and we’re going to have a little fun,” says Cunningham.
Cunningham’s former political opponents know that running against current Governor Henry McMaster is no easy task. News 2 asked Congresswoman Nancy Mace how she feels about her old opponent running for a new office.
“I wish him all the luck in the world. That’s what elections are for and it’s great to live in a country that’s free and you can run for literally any office that you want to,” says Mace.
Known for his ability to “reach across the aisle,” Cunningham is focusing on putting people before politics. He believes that South Carolina is in need of solutions; especially after the numerous hardships brought on by COVID-19.
“From our teacher shortage, to our lack of affordable healthcare — this pandemic has amplified every shortcoming we have in our state,” says Cunningham. “It is clear that we need a change from the failed leadership that got us here in the first place.”
Some of the issues that he is running his campaign on include:
- Improving schools and raising teacher pay
- Expanding Medicaid
- Respecting women’s rights
- Diversity, inclusion and police reform
- Gun safety reform
- Climate change and clean energy jobs
Charleston County Councilman Kylon Middleton is a supporter of Cunningham’s. During Wednesday’s kick off event, he highlighted some of the reasons why he believes Joe Cunningham will be a great governor.
“Joe can win because Joe is effective. As a freshman he got 2 bills signed into law by a Republican president. That’s not supposed to happen! But Joe Cunningham is different,” says Middleton.
Cunningham will be traveling to all 46 counties in South Carolina during his campaign tour. He says the next stop will be Greenville, SC.