DECISION 2020: U.S. Senate candidates talk vision for South Carolina as race tightens

DECISION 2020: U.S. Senate candidates talk vision for South Carolina as race tightens

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) - While all eyes are on the Presidential Election, another has gained national attention.

It’s the race for South Carolina’s U.S. Senate seat between long-time Sen. Lindsey Graham and his Democratic challenger Jaime Harrison.

Graham is vying for a fourth term in office, while Harrison is hoping to take his place in this highly contested race.

In an East Carolina University poll released this week, Graham leads Harrison by just three percentage points among likely voters, while other polls, like the one from Data for Progress, show the pair neck and neck.

“I never in my wildest dream believed that this race would turn into this, but after Kavanaugh, there’s a target on my back,” Graham said. “Helping President Trump has elevated me in the terms of people they want to take out.”

“You have someone like me who’s talking about bringing hope back to South Carolina, who’s talking about how we need to rebuild infrastructure in rural communities,” Harrison said.

Graham, who’s from the small town of Central, S.C., was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2002. He currently serves as the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The incumbent prides himself as a conservative problem-solver.

“I feel like I’ve been a solid conservative, but I’ve reached across the aisles to fix hard problems like immigration,” Graham said.

Meanwhile, Harrison’s platform focuses on state and local problems.

He said he wants people to experience the American Dream like he did as a child born to a single teenage mother in Orangeburg, S.C., to graduating from Yale University and Georgetown Law.

“Many of these kids don’t think that they have the opportunity, they don’t see the opportunity, they don’t have any hope and that’s hard to see when I know when you have a little bit of hope and you put in hard work what it can turn into,” Harrison said.

In the home stretch to Election Day on Nov. 3, both candidates are picking up steam in their campaign to earn your support.

“I’ve been a traditional conservative, but I think at the end of the day what I’m offering South Carolina is a much better fit,” Graham said. “We’re the best place in the world to raise a family and start a business and as your senator, I’ll do my best to keep up that what.”

“You’re representing all of South Carolina, not just a segment, and when I’m the United States senator, I will work as hard as for the people who voted against me as I would work for the folks who voted for me because that’s my job, that’s a job of a U.S. senator,” Harrison said.

Graham and Harrison will face off in their final debate Friday. The Post and Courier and SCETV will host the debate at ETV’s studios at 7 p.m.

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