Several candidates headed to runoffs after low voter turnout in June primary

Thunderstorms loomed over the Midlands on Tuesday as voters trickled into polling places to cast votes for the general primary election in South Carolina.

Several candidates in Richland and Lexington counties will be heading to the November election to face

In Richland County, Sheriff Leon Lott won handily over his challenger, former South Carolina Law Enforcement Division agent James Flowers. Lott captured 75 percent of the vote.

Yvonne McBride replaces Richland County Council District 3 representative Damon Jeter of District 3 who did not run for re-election, while Gwen Kennedy takes over for County Council District 7 representative Torrey Rush, who ran and lost Tuesday against incumbent John Scott Jr. for State Senate District 19 seat.

Incumbent County Councilman James Manning, who represents District 8, kept his seat. But current Councilwoman Julie-Ann Dixon of District 9 lost by a large margin to Richland Two board member Chip Jackson, who pulled in 60 percent of the vote.

Lott, Kennedy, McBride, Manning and Jackson face no Republican challengers in the general election, though they will appear on the November ballot.

The race to fill the new term for the Richland County Council District 10 seat will head to a runoff as challengers Dahli Myers and Bernice Scott face off again. Myers earned 60 percent of the vote in the special runoff election to finish out ousted Councilman Kelvin Washington’s term ending Dec. 31.

Over in Lexington County, four Republican primary races are headed for a runoff in two weeks.

Lisa Comer and Emily Hinson will go up for Clerk of Court; Rich Bolen and Tina Guerry for Register of Deeds; Darrell Hudson and Brad Matthews face off for County Council District 3; and Erin Long Bergeson and Dino Teppara will go head-to-head for the County Council District 6 seat.

The runoff election is scheduled for June 28.

Voter turnout was dismal for a statewide primary in a presidential election year. Only 13.7 percent of the more than 3 million South Carolina registered voters came out to vote on Tuesday. Of the 439,573 registered voters in Richland and Lexington counties, just 61,684 people cast ballots June 14.

During the 2012 South Carolina primary, about 4 percent of Democratic voters cast ballots, while 6 percent of registered Republicans voted. A total of 282,746 combined Richland and Lexington county voters went to the polls during that year. In 2012, 2,752,569 registered individuals voted in the June primary.

Winners of races with no challengers from the opposite political party, as well as winners of uncontested races, will still appear on the November ballot as petition votes and write-in candidates could be voted in, according to the South Carolina Election Commission.

The following is a list of candidates who are headed to the general election or the primary runoff:

  • Red: Winners heading to November general election
  • Blue: Candidates heading to primary runoff

Lexington County races (98 of 101 precincts counted at 9:36 p.m.)

County Council District 1:

Jim Kinard (R-incumbent)-567

Scotty Whetsone (R)-661

County Council District 3:

Kent Collins-427

Darrell Hudson (R)-1,318

Brad Matthews (R)-1,179

Colin Thain (R)-476

County Council District 4:

Debbie Summers (R-incumbent)-1,823

Gene Wilbur (R)-829

County Council District 5:

Brian Duncan (R)-1,016

Bobby Keisler (R-incumbent)-1,054

County Council District 6: 

Erin Long Bergeson (R)-1,009

Dino Teppara (R)-1,250

Ronald Derrick (R)-896

Benjamin Stitely (R)-110


Margaret Fisher (R)-13,460

Glenn Ross (R)-7,247

Solicitor, 11th Circuit:

Rick Hubbard (R)-10,342

Candice Lively (R)-6,287

Larry Wedekind (R)-4,481

Register of Deeds:

Rich Bolen (R)-5,280

Tina Guerry (R)-8,493

Mike Green (R)-3,607

Daniel M. Gregory (R)-1,329

Joyce Munsch (R)-1,504

Clerk of Court:

Lisa Comer (R)-7,370

Emily Hinson (R)-6,583

Mollie Taylor (R)-6,200

Richland County races (152 of 154 precincts counted at 12:07 a.m.)


Leon Lott (D/incumbent)- 27,148

James Flowers (D)- 8,974

County Council, District 3:

Michael Damelio (D)-596

Yvonne McBride (D)-2,336

Bruce A. Trezevant (D)-1,054

County Council District 7:

Gwen Kennedy (D)-2,469

Keith Bailey (D)-1,614

County Council District 8:

Jim Manning (D/incumbent)-2,323

Wayne Gilbert (D)-1,568

County Council District 9:

Julie-Ann Dixon (D/incumbent)-1,342

Calvin “Chip” Jackson (D)-2,030

County Council, District 10 (general primary election):

Helen Taylor Bradley (D)-548

Mary Kirkland (D)-87

Jerome Marvin Miller (D)-62

Dahli Myers (D)-1,694

Bernice G. Scott (D)-1,357

State House seats: Lexington County

House District 39:

Ralph Shealy Kennedy (R-Leesville/incumbent)-837

Cal Forrest (R-Monetta)-1,094

House District 69:

Rick Quinn (R-Lexington/incumbent)-2,159

Ryan Holt (R-Lexington)-1,311

House District 71:

Nathan Ballentine (R-Chapin/incumbent)-1,906

Bill Malinowski (R-Chapin)-354

House District 85:

Chip Huggins (R-Columbia/incumbent)-2,343

Bryan Clifton (R-Columbia)-1,430

House District 88:

Mac Toole (R-West Columbia/incumbent)-2,070

David Busby (R-Pine Ridge)-834

House District 89:

Micah Caskey (R-West Columbia)-1,026

Tem Miles (R-West Columbia) -717

Billy Oswald (R-West Columbia)-550

Bill Banning-596

House District 96:

Kit Spires (R-Pelion/incumbent)-1,231

Perry Finch (R-Pelion)-501

State House seats: Richland County

House District 77:

Joe McEachern (D-Columbia/incumbent)-3,753

Raymond Mars (D-Columbia)-884

House District 79:

Monica Elkins (D-Columbia)-2,043

Ivory Thigpen (D-Columbia)-2,073

Vannie Williams Jr. (D-Columbia)-323

House District 80:

Jimmy Bales (D-Eastover/incumbent)-1,836

Brian Burke (D-Columbia)-359

Lawrence Moore (D-Hopkins)-615

State Senate seats: Richland County

Senate District 19:

John Scott (D-Columbia/incumbent)-5,821

Torrey Rush (D-Columbia)-3,588

Senate District 21:

Darrell Jackson (D-Hopkins/incumbent)-6,294

Wendy Brawley (D-Hopkins)-3,915

State Senate seats: Lexington County (98 of 101 precincts counted at 9:36 p.m.)

Senate District 23:

Katrina Shealy (R-Lexington/incumbent)-4,384

Michael Sturkie (R-Lexington)-2,093

Patricia Wheat (R-Pelion)-606

Senate District 25:

Shane Massey (R-Edgefield/incumbent)-1,265

John Pettigrew (R-Edgefield)-953

U.S. House of Representatives

U.S. House District 2:

Arik Bjorn (D-Columbia)-9,604

Phil Black (D-Lexington)-9,555

– Information provided by the State Elections Commission, Richland County Elections and Voter Registration, Lexington County Elections

Categories: Elections, Lexington County, Politics, Richland County