Monday, April 09, 2018

Archie Parnell in the South Carolina 5th Gets an Opening

Ralph Norman
Republican Ralph Norman has been the congressman from the 5th Congressional District of South Carolina only since June of 2017, when he won a special election there to finish out Mick Mulvaney's term. (Mulvaney had gone to glory in the Twitterman's White House.) In that special election, Norman beat Democrat Archie Parnell by less than 3,000 votes.

For behavior alone, Ralph Norman is a dick. He was meeting with constituents at a diner in Rock Hill last Friday when he noticed a gaggle of women in the room wearing red T-shirts, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. So what did Ralph Norman do? He pulled a handgun out of his jacket pocket and placed it on the table, where it remained for the next several minutes.

Lori Freeman, who was wearing one of the red T-shirts, "said Mr. Norman told the group his gun was loaded. He asked many times if they felt safer," she said.

Democrat Archie Parnell is running again. In that special election in 2017, Parnell closed the Democratic deficit from 16 points down to three. Parnell was virtually unknown outside the 5th District and surprised many, because, you see, on the same day that Parnell was doing so well against Norman, Jon Ossoff was losing his special election in Georgia's 6th CD to Karen Handel. Everybody had been watching Ossoff's campaign. Nobody was paying attention to Parnell.

That neglect has changed.

Parnell's announcement video is funny and presents a sharp contrast to the bombastic Ralph Norman:

Parnell earned his law degree from the University of South Carolina and worked as a tax attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice and for the House Ways & Means Committee under Democratic leadership. From his website:
Archie is running for Congress because Washington is not solving the real problems that are hurting middle class families. As a tax expert, he will work with both parties to close loopholes that allow giant companies to keep untaxed profits overseas – and use that money to cut taxes for families, repair and improve South Carolina infrastructure, and create jobs. He believes that cutting taxes for families and simplifying them for businesses will attract jobs to South Carolina again.
Something to keep in mind: The SC 5th District bumps up against the North Carolina border and actually takes in some of the southern suburbs of Charlotte. Suburban Republican mothers aren't necessarily enamored of fool congressmen who brandish weapons in front of moms concerned about gun violence.

Politico called his first run against Ralph Norman "the best political campaign of 2017" and said, "It’s hard to look at Parnell’s performance in the special and conclude that he can’t win."

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