South Carolina political parties react to Trump’s visit

Published: Jan. 29, 2023 at 1:01 AM EST|Updated: Jan. 30, 2023 at 8:27 AM EST
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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) -As former President Donald Trump visited the state Saturday, South Carolina political parties reacted to his arrival and plans for the 2024 election.

Over 300 people gathered in the second-floor lobby of the Statehouse, a ceremonial area between the House and Senate chambers in Columbia to hear Trump, the only declared 2024 presidential candidate, speak.

Chairman of the Charleston County Republican Party, Maurice Washington, shares his opinion, and the party’s, on the former president stopping in South Carolina.

“Anytime you have a presidential candidate visiting your state, you feel good about that,” Washington says. “So lots of people still admire President Trump, and he so a lot of strong support here in South Carolina, and specifically here in Charleston County.”

Early polling shows Trump is a favorite to win his party’s nomination, but Trav Roberson, chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party, says the turnout shows the beginnings of a failed campaign.

“You’ll see Democrats coalesce behind Joe Biden, who has really turned out to be one of the most consequential presidents in the modern era,” Roberson says. “South Carolina, we’re honored to be part of this process. At the end of the day, you need to be looking at how few people showed up. Who is not there on the political spectrum?”

Trump also stopped in New Hampshire Saturday before coming to South Carolina for his first public campaign event since launching his bid more than two months ago. Both states hold two of the party’s first three nominating contests, giving them power in selecting its nominee.

“I think most of the presidential candidates on both sides of the line, Democratic candidates, as well as the Republican candidates, know that it’s important to work a base in South Carolina given that we may be one of the first primary states in the n