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The 2018 Primary Wrap-Up: voters usher in new faces

The 2018 Primary Wrap-Up: voters usher in new faces

Columbia, S.C. (WACH) -- Voters across the Midlands sent a message during the primaries on Tuesday: out with the old and in with the new.

Voters exchanged some familiar faces with fresh newcomers.

One notable race was the Richland County Council. Councilman Norman Jackson was voted out in favor of political newcomer and P.R. consultant Chakisse Newton.

"I was getting two to three pieces of mail per day from Councilwoman-Elect Newton," said Antjuan Seawright, a political strategist. "I probably only got one or two pieces from Councilman Jackson. That's not saying he did a bad job on council; I think he did a tremendous job. But she communicated a message that resonated more with people that said, 'Hey, maybe we should try something different because business as usual has not worked for us.'"

This is Newton's first time running for public office. She will face Zoe Pruitt Owen, a businesswoman and schoolteacher, in November.

In another race, voters bid farewell to Representative Mark Sanford of Congressional District 1.

This, after a critical tweet from President Donald Trump, saying Sanford was "unhelpful" in his campaign to "Make America Great Again", or MAGA, and that he was endorsing Katie Arrington of Dorchester County.

However, another political strategist, John Parker, says voters' support of Sanford began to wane long before the president's tweet.

"Congressman Sanford hasn't worked very hard compared to other campaigns to get reelected," said Parker. "And whether it be old stuff like the Appalachian Trail, or new stuff like fighting President Trump, there were reasons that the 1st Congressional District said 'enough is enough.'"

Arrington will face Democrat Joe Cunningham, an attorney and owner of a yoga studio, in the next election.

Lastly, Kershaw County Sheriff Jim Matthews left his seat vacant after retiring.

Anthony Bell, who has a career in law enforcement spreading across three decades, is running on the Democratic side. Two men are preparing to face off in the primary: Lee Boan, the Camden assistant police chief, and Jack Rushing, the chief deputy of the Kershaw County Sheriff's Department.

The run-off races will take place on June 26th.

Voters who cast their ballot in the primary must choose the same political party ballot for the election. However, if a voter did not cast a primary ballot, they will be able to choose either party.

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