Voters: Too many candidates for 1st Congressional District race
BEAUFORT CO., SC (WTOC) -
According to a political science expert, the number of candidates in South Carolina race for the District 1 Congressional seat is actually normal in a race like this, where there is no incumbent.
This is the time when voters typically see a lot of candidates come forward, because they know this is their best opportunity to see their big political dreams realized.
However, many voters say 16 Republicans is just too many to keep up with.
Armstrong Atlantic State University Political Science Professor Daniel Skidmore-Hess said their reaction is normal and often benefits the candidate with star power.
"People get overwhelmed when there's that many candidates. This usually works out to the advantage of the candidates who are well known, because voters will gravitate towards them," said Skidmore-Hess.
Or they won't vote at all. Cynthia Mercer, a registered Republican, said she votes in every election, but this coming Tuesday she will not be at the polls.
"I think the thing about this whole election is it's too confusing. I think there's just far too many candidates and nobody knows what anybody is about," she said. "With so many flipping candidates, what do you do?"
Democrats said the number of Republicans running shows nothing but disorder amongst the Republican Party, giving Democrats a good opportunity to win in the general election.
Republicans say this shows how passionate these candidates are about serving the people of District 1, which covers most of the South Carolina coast.
"I'm surprised by the number of people who are willing to stand up and run for office. I have to give them a hand because that's a tough thing to do," said Jim Lee, president of the Sun City Hilton Head Republicans.
Republicans have represented District 1 since 1971. Democrats admit it's an uphill battle, but they're not giving up.
"We have something to overcome in this district because it is basically a Republican district but we have a great opportunity this time, because of all the issues within the Republican Party," said Blaine Lotz, chairman of Beaufort County Democrats.