South Carolina 2022 Midterm Election Recap

Voting concept - Ballot box with national flag on background - South Carolina

Most votes from Tuesday’s midterm election have been counted across South Carolina, deciding races for all seats in the South Carolina House, state Constitutional Officers, and U.S. Congressional districts. The South Carolina Senate is not up for election until 2024.

Federal Races

Voters reelected Republican incumbent U.S. Senator Tim Scott for another six-year term in Washington. He defeated Democrat Rep. Krystle Matthews, a member of the state House.

The makeup of South Carolina’s Congressional delegation stays the same – six Republicans and one Democrat – for the next two years. All four incumbents who faced challengers in the general election retained their seats, each victorious by at least 14 points. They included Republican Rep. Nancy Mace in CD-1, Republican Rep. Joe Wilson in CD-2, Republican Rep. Ralph Norman in CD-5, and Democrat Rep. James Clyburn in CD-6.

In the 7th Congressional District, Republican state Rep. Russell Fry defeated Democrat Daryl Scott by 30 points. In a Republican primary, Fry ousted incumbent Rep. Tom Rice, who had voted to impeach then-President Donald J. Trump.

Republican incumbent Reps. Jeff Duncan and Rep. William Timmons were reelected in CD-3 and CD-4 without opposition.

Statewide Races

Republican Governor Henry McMaster was reelected after defeating Democrat Joe Cunningham, a former Congressman, by 17 points. If Gov. McMaster completes his second term, he will serve as governor for ten years, longer than any other executive in the state’s history. By reelecting McMaster, voters also reelected Lt. Gov. Pamela Evette – which has been the case since governors and lieutenant governors started running as a joint ticket in 2018.

In a closely watched race for Superintendent of Education, Republican candidate Ellen Weaver defeated Democrat Lisa Elli, 55% to 43%.

Republican incumbents – Secretary of State Mark Hammond, Treasurer Curtis Loftis, and Agriculture Commissioner Hugh Weathers – swept their statewide races for executive offices, each winning by at least 26 points. Republican Attorney General Alan Wilson and Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom were reelected without opposition.

Ballot Initiatives

Voters weighed in on two ballot initiatives about state government funding:

General Reserve Fund – With nearly 62% approval, voters agreed to gradually increase the state’s general reserve fund from 5% to 7% of the prior fiscal year’s general fund.

Capital Reserve Fund – With 63% approval, voters supported increasing the amount set aside in the state’s capital reserve fund from 2% to 3% of the prior fiscal year’s general fund.

Legislative Races

Voters chose 27 new South Carolina legislators, and the Republican majority grew by eight seats. After newly elected officials get sworn in, the House will have 88 Republicans and 36 Democrats.

There were several notable upsets and a handful of highly contested races in this year’s House legislative elections, including:

  • In District 12, Republican Daniel Gibson upset incumbent Democrat Rep. Anne Parks, 53% to 47%.
  • In District 54, incumbent Democrat Rep. Pat Henegan beat Republican Sterling McDiarmid, 52% to 48%.
  • In District 55, incumbent Democrat Rep. Jackie Hayes beat Republican Robert Norton, 50% to 47%, retaining the seat he has held since 1999.
  • In District 64, Republican Fawn Pedalino upset incumbent Democrat Rep. Kimberly Johnson, 55% to 45%.
  • In District 75, Democrat Heather Bauer flipped a seat that Republican incumbent Rep. Kirkman Finlay held for the last decade. In a close race, Bauer defeated Finlay 51% to 49%.
  • In District 102, incumbent Democrat Rep. Joe Jefferson narrowly defeated Republican Ralph Elsey, 51% to 49%.
  • In District 110, Republican Tom Hartnett beat Democrat Ellis Roberts, 54% to 46%. Hartnett is the son of former Congressman Tommy Hartnett.
  • In District 115, incumbent Democrat Rep. Spencer Wetmore beat Republican Carroll O’Neal, 54% to 46%.
  • In District 116, Republican Matt Leber upset incumbent Democrat Rep. Chardale Murray, 52% to 48%.
  • In District 122, Republican Bill Hager defeated Democratic incumbent Rep. Shedron Williams, 54% to 46%.

The South Carolina Election Commission provides more information about legislative races across all districts.

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