What is happening in the Sixth Congressional District of South Carolina? For the first time since the 1992 election Jim Clyburn is facing a legitimate contender.
Political newcomer Jim Pratt has come out of nowhere to take on the immortal, fall off the left side of the map, ultra liberal Clyburn. Not only is Jim Pratt in the race, some people are actually saying he has a chance to win! Can you imagine that?
Six months ago no one could tell you anything about this man. Even the SCGOP hierarchy did not know anything about Jim Pratt. At a local event I heard SCGOP Chairperson Karen Floyd call him by the wrong name. Today, she certainly knows Jim Pratt. I will speculate that the SCGOP felt that Jim Pratt would be a distraction and pull resources from the party fighting a fight that could not be won. If Pratt does pull off the victory for the ages, I bet party members will line up saying “We knew you could do it! We’ve been with you all the way.”
Recently I had the opportunity to have some one-on-one time with Mr. Pratt. It has been a long time since I have seen someone with such passion and determination. Mr Pratt is a realist. He knows he is in for a knock down, drag out fight. His opponent has almost three decades of campaigning experience. Clyburn has name recognition, he has money and he’s got a reputation of not being a very clean fighter.
However, Clyburn’s apparent advantages are also his weaknesses. After decades of “service to his constituency” cracks exist. There are people starting to openly complain that Clyburn represents only a handful of big contributors and businesspersons. There are areas in the district that have not been visited by Clyburn, or his staff, for several years. Some of these areas are the poorest in South Carolina and experiencing the highest unemployment in the State. People are starting to question Clyburn’s sincerity and feel they have been forgotten or ignored.
Jim Pratt’s grass root campaign is on the attack armed with sweat and the issues.
I’m not going to get into every issue at this point, but I will say moderate Democrats are starting to understand that Clyburn’s ultra-liberal, free spending ways are starting to hurt the State and the country. They are looking for an alternative and they may have found it in Jim Pratt.
Visit Jim Pratt for Congress at http://www.jimprattforcongress.com/