Saturday, July 19, 2014
More than 50 people gathered at The Mitney Project the evening of July 16 to meet one of four candidates for the vacant Senate District 32 seat, Rep. Ronnie Sabb.
Rep. Sabb, a Williamsburg County resident, owns a law office in Kingstree and was first elected to the state legislature in 2010. He represents House District 101.
The event included several speakers besides the candidate himself, all of whom had glowing reviews of Rep. Sabb’s character and political intentions.
“He’s going to make a great senator if he wins this election,” said Georgetown Mayor Jack Scoville.
Sen. J. Thomas McElveen, District 35, called Rep. Sabb a “team player” who “commands respect in the House” and has a “huge heart.”
“He’s a great man, a great friend, a great attorney, and a great legislator,” Sen. McElveen said.
Sen. Kevin Johnson, District 36, also spoke highly of the candidate: “I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again because I truly believe it: Ronnie Sabb doesn’t’ need the South Carolina Senate. The South Carolina Senate needs Ronnie Sabb.”
Rep. Sabb was met with a standing ovation as he entered the space, and addressed the attendees on his personal life and his political beliefs.
After two stories about growing up and his grandmother, Rep. Sabb said, “I tell you this about myself so you can understand that we need folks in Columbia where they were not all born with silver spoons in their mouths.
“We need folks in Columbia who understand that people don’t need a hand out, but a hand up.”
Regarding the Affordable Care Act: “It simply makes no sense the decisions our state is making. … It’s still popular in our state to be anti-Obama.”
He spent time discussing his previous work supporting education and healthcare legislation in the House.
He spoke of the Georgetown Port, an issue several brought up in his introduction.
“Any right-thinking individuals has to know that it’s essential for the economy. …It will simply do us no good to dredge and then neglect. There has to be a maintenance plan going forward,” Rep. Sabb said.
He said overall his goal is tailor solutions to individual problems, like the Georgetown Port dredging.
“There is not a one-size-fits-all solution. We have to continue to be open-minded. As we go around Georgetown communities and Williamsburg communities and Florence communities, we have to keep searching for unique solutions.”
The candidate and all of his supporters urged the crowd to vote in the special election, regardless of who they vote for.
“This election is very critical. We all are hurting, we all need jobs, we all need leadership with real leaders,” said Donald Gilliard, campaign manager.
Mayor Scoville said, “It’s very important we have a good turnout.”
“These local elections are even more important than [the presidential election],” said Sen. Johnson. “This is someone who lives with us, goes to church with us, is in the post office next to us, you can put your hands on them.”
The special election will be held Sept. 2, and if necessary, a primary runoff is scheduled for Sept. 16.
The other candidates are Rep. Carl Anderson, of Georgetown County, Sam Floyd of Williamsburg County and Cezar McKnight, of Williamsburg County.