The sponsor of failed state legislation in South Carolina mimicking North Carolina’s anti-LGBT “bathroom bill” has been defeated in a Republican runoff primary race.
As reported by WLTX News, “Bright led a four-way primary two weeks ago with 38 percent of the vote over [Scott] Talley’s 27 percent. Two GOP Senate committee chairmen and a longtime Democrat also lost.”
As Greenville Online also reports, “With all precincts in Tuesday night, Talley had captured 299 more votes than Bright to win with 51.5 percent, according to the State Election Commission.”
Talley will now likely be the next state Senator from his district, since no other person has filed to run in the general election according to reports.
The incumbent State Senator, Lee Bright, was, according to the local CBS affiliate station (WLTX), the “only incumbent publicly opposed by the state Chamber of Commerce’s political committee.”
Talley enjoyed the endorsement of the Chamber of Commerce’s political committee, along with the endorsement of the Governor, Republican Nikki Haley.
The state Chamber of Commerce had good reason to actively oppose Bright. One of the major fallout effects on North Carolina after the passing of their bathroom bill, which restricts rights of the LGBT community, was the massive drain on the state economy.
Business ventures from musicians like Bruce Springsteen and Pearl Jam to major corporations like PayPal and Deutsche Bank pulled out of North Carolina after the bill passed.
In April, the Center for American Progress found, as reported by Media Matters:
‘The North Carolina economy could potentially lose out on more than $568 million in private-sector economic activity through 2018. The state has already lost out on $86 million and stands to lose upwards of an additional $481 million due to cancelled events, businesses leaving the area, and tourism declines if HB2 is not repealed.’
The South Carolina state Chamber of Commerce and leading Republicans like the Governor herself have very good reason to have opposed Bright. They simply don’t want the economic catastrophe to walk across the border from the north.
Why Bright found it in himself to propose such a bill was also under scrutiny leading up to the election. Some of the other objections to Bright from the state Chamber of Commerce “included his votes against tort reform, road-funding plans and aid to flood-stricken farmers.”
Of course he voted down aid to flood stricken farmers, since his priorities were so mixed up in the first place that he proposed South Carolina’s version of a bathroom bill. The bathroom bill, in all the various places it has sprung up, is a complete partisan attack on LGBT rights, plain and simple.
No transgender person has ever been reported to have assaulted or harmed in any way someone who was in any public bathroom at any time.
That fact, however, doesn’t mean Republicans like Bright, who hate transgender people since they do not conform to the right’s standard, won’t try and pretend like transgender people are dangerous anyway.
And that’s why Bright voted down aid for flood stricken farmers, because his priorities, like so many on the right, are under other people’s clothes.
A quick perusal of the bills with Bright’s name attached in the state record reveals that meaningless and dangerous partisan attacks on safety and decency have defined his tenure.
The top 2 bills in the search results were to allow firearms in voting locations and in colleges.
In Bright’s defeat comes one small victory against meaningless partisanship, with many more left to go.