COLUMBIA, SC (WBTW) – Nine-term veteran state Rep. Alan Clemmons announced his resignation on Friday, saying he needs to spend more time with family and his law practice.
His opponent in the June Primary, Republican Case Brittian, confirmed to News13 he plans to run again to get on the ballot in November. Brittian lost the primary election, with 2,052 votes to 2,892 for Clemmons.
“Representative Clemmons has to do what’s best for him, my plan has not changed, my vision has not changed; putting the Grand back in Grand Strand,” Brittain said.
Clemmons said after 18 years of being a representative and serving as the District 107 member, he will now be stepping down. “With a heavy heart, but solid conviction; today, I announce my resignation from the SC House of Representatives effective at noon today,” Clemmons said.
“These past 18 years have truly been an honor but have also weighed heavily on my family and my business,” he said. “I fully believed that I could effectively serve my constituents for one more term, but it has become increasingly clear in the last few weeks that my time needs to be spent with my family and at my law practice. I sincerely appreciate the support I have received, and I look forward to serving my community in other, less public, ways.”
South Carolina Election Commission officials tell News13, a special election will not be held for the seat because the general election is so close.
“There is some time left on that term, but in this case because we are so close to the general election there is no special election required, spokesman for the South Carolina Election Commission, Chris Whitmire said. “This seat will be filled at the general election.”
In the meantime, the Board of Elections must decide if his reason for withdrawing is not politically motivated.
“The law says the candidate withdrawals by affidavit stating the reason for withdrawal,” Whitmire explained “Once that affidavit is filed with the State Election Commission and the party, the state election commission would have to hold a hearing within 10 days to determine if the reason for withdrawal is a legitimate nonpolitical reason.”
Whitmire says nonpolitical reasons are defined in statute 7-11-50, but the three main reasons are: health, business or family.
If the reason is found to be nonpolitical, candidate filing will open the second Tuesday after the decision and will be open for a week. If there are multiple candidates that filed for any one political party, a primary election would be held the second Tuesday after the close of filing. A runoff would be held two weeks after the primary if it is needed.
“The law lays out a pretty straight forward and detailed process,” Whitmire said. “It is a very compact time frame that this occurs in.”
Whitmire said at the local level, a candidate withdrawing is a “pretty rare occurrence”, but at the state-level, it happens about once or twice a general election year.
Governor McMaster said he has been grateful for the time that Clemmons has served in the SC House.
“Alan Clemmons has served this state well. He has been my ally since the days that I served as the Chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party and Alan chaired the Horry County Republicans,” McMaster said.
“That was nearly thirty years ago, but Alan has consistently been there to fight the good fight for South Carolina. Alan has proven his effectiveness as a legislator time, and time again, over his nearly two decades of service in the General Assembly. From his Voter ID Bill to his anti-Money Laundering Bill; his legislation to reduce taxes and to empower small business success; his work to bring new jobs to our state… Everyone in the Statehouse knows that when Alan sinks his teeth into an issue that he will not quit until he gets the job done! I am personally grateful for Alan Clemmons’ service to the State of South Carolina. The citizens of South Carolina are in a better place today because of his efforts.”
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