High number of GOP candidates poses forum challenges as race for Gowdy’s seat heats up

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Thirteen candidates are in the running for Trey Gowdyโ€™s fourth congressional district seat, making it one of the largest primary fieldโ€™s the Upstate has ever seen.

“This may be a record of the Upstate for the number of candidates for one seat,โ€ said Nate Leupp, chairman of the Greenville County Republican Party.

The district, which is one of the wealthiest and most conservative in South Carolina, includes parts of both Greenville and Spartanburg Counties.


With the primary election quickly approaching on June 12th, Leupp told 7 News Monday that all candidates are trying to get a word in while they can.

“The biggest challenge with 13 candidates is trying to have forums or debates or things like that, just the sheer logistics is a nightmare,โ€ Leupp explained.

The incredibly high volume of candidates has already posed challenges to those running, as well as those voting.

Chip Felkel, a local political consultant for Felkel Group in Greenville, said that these 13 District 4 GOP candidates barely have enough time to get their message across at forums because of every wanting to speak.

The problem has also trickled down to Republican voters, who Felkel said are having a hard time getting to know their candidates.

“The voters are going to listen to 13 responses and try to figure out who said what, when, and then try to attribute it to each person.”

Felkelโ€™s advice for GOP voters is to go to forums but also continue to research all candidates on the side, for a better idea of where each person stands on political issues.

“Use this as taking the temperature of the field, and then [you need to] go do your own research and make your own decision.”

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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