2020 South Carolina Senate Candidate Guide

Lindsey Graham (Republican - Incumbent)
Lindsey Graham (Republican - Incumbent)
Jaime Harrison (Democrat)
Jaime Harrison (Democrat)

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AFFORDABLE CARE ACT – Support Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known as Obamacare?

Lindsey Graham – No. Has promised that the ACA will be repealed if Republicans win the House and retain the Senate in the 2020 election.

Jaime Harrison – Yes. Worked on ACA as a staffer for Jim Clyburn. Strengthen ACA by expanding Medicaid, adding coverage for mental health, vision and dental care, adding public option.

CAMPAIGN FINANCE – Require political campaigns to disclose their largest funders?

Lindsey Graham – No recent stand found. Co-sponsored 2006 legislation prohibiting senators raising funds until 18 months before elections.

Jaime Harrison – Yes. “I’m proud to be working … to overturn [Citizens United]. … It’s time we put an end to this decade of Dark Money.”

CLIMATE CHANGE – Consider climate change a threat and address as a top priority by taxing or limiting output of greenhouse gases?

Lindsey Graham – Mostly Yes. “I believe climate change is real and we should take steps to address the threat.” Has previously endorsed carbon tax.  Recently stresses technical innovation over regulation or taxation.

Jaime Harrison – Yes. “Climate change is … disproportionately hitting Black communities, leaving sickness and death in its wake.” Would fight to cut emissions by transitioning to cleaner energy.

COURTS — SUPREME COURT – Pick Ruth Bader Ginsburg replacement now or let November winner choose? See CEEP Supreme Court guide.

Lindsey Graham – Confirm now. In 2016: “Let the next president, whoever it might be, make that nomination. [If situation reversed] I want you to use my words against me.” Now supports confirmation because the same party controls the Senate and White House.

Jaime Harrison -Wait for next president to make appointment. “The question [is] is [Graham] going to keep his promise to the American people?” “We have come to see that Lindsey Graham’s word has not been very valuable over the last few years.”

COVID-19 – Support administration’s response to coronavirus pandemic?

Lindsey Graham – Yes. China originated the virus, but Trump “probably saved 1 million to 2 million Americans from a horrible death.” People need to “wear a mask, wash your hands, and practice social distancing.”

Jaime Harrison – No. “We had time earlier to marshal the full power of the federal government in the production of tests and protective equipment, but leaders in Washington like Lindsey Graham were too busy denying the danger this virus posed.”

COVID-19 ECONOMIC RESPONSE – Support administration’s economic response to coronavirus pandemic?

Lindsey Graham – Yes. President Trump “fixed a broken economy once; he’s the best bet to do it twice.”

Jaime Harrison – No. Republican reluctance to extend unemployment benefits shows “failure of leadership.” “Families won’t get the help they need.”

ENVIRONMENT – Tighten or loosen regulations?

Lindsey Graham – Unclear. “I believe South Carolina should have the ultimate say in who controls any oil and gas deposits off our coast.” No clear position on whether to drill.

Jaime Harrison – Ban. “A spill off our beaches would destroy jobs and harm the coastal environment that makes South Carolina beautiful.” Tourism supports one in 10 SC jobs.

FINANCIAL REGULATION – Tighten or loosen regulation of banks and credit card companies?

Lindsey Graham -Loosen: Voted against the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010.

Jaime Harrison – No position found.

GUN LAWS – Enact more restrictive legislation on firearms?

Lindsey Graham – Mostly no: Has been twice endorsed by NRA. In 2018, pushed for “red flag” legislation that would “prevent individuals who are in crisis from accessing deadly weapons.”

Jaime Harrison – Yes. “I am honored to be endorsed by  Giffords [a gun violence prevention organization] and look forward to working … to stop the epidemic of gun violence.”

IMMIGRATION – Create path to citizenship for “DACA” residents brought to U.S. as children?

Lindsey Graham – Unclear. Wants to cancel DACA, then find legislative solution. “I have always believed DACA was a presidential overreach.”

Jaime Harrison – Yes. “Congress should cement this program into law by supporting the DREAM Act, which has overwhelming bipartisan support.”

IMMIGRATION – Support expanded border walls?

Lindsey Graham – Yes. “We need the wall.” But also need “to deal with magnets and loopholes in the law that entice people to come.”

Jaime Harrison – No. Not feasible sea to sea. But need “effective border security,” and “should not decriminalize illegal border crossings.”

IRAN – Require congressional approval for military attacks on Iran?

Lindsey Graham – No. Opposed resolution requiring congressional approval.

Jaime Harrison – No position found. Generally supports reinvigorating “our fractured alliances” and “pursuing diplomatic solutions that prevent violent conflict.”

LABOR – Support “right to work” laws, eliminating the ability of unions to mandate dues for workers they represent?

Lindsey Graham – Yes. Co-sponsored the National Right-To-Work Act in 2015.

Jaime Harrison – No. Supported the right of workers to organize a union at a Boeing plant in South Carolina. Current job protections “are the results of the hard work [of] unions.”

LEGAL ABORTION – Keep legal or ban?

Lindsey Graham – Ban. Repeatedly introduced bill banning after 20 weeks, with exceptions for rape or incest if reported to police or social services.

Jaime Harrison – Legal. “If you try to ignore Roe v. Wade and violate a woman’s constitutional rights, Democrats will fight you at every turn.”

LGBT RIGHTS – Support same-sex marriage? Support act protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination based on sexual orientation?

Lindsey Graham – Mixed. In 2015 compared same-sex marriage to polygamy, but later said that since decided by the courts, trying to overturn risked harming Republicans. Voted against 2013 Employment Non-discrimination Act.

Jaime Harrison – Yes. “I stand with the LGBTQIA+ community, and as senator, I’ll work to pass the Equality Act to protect LGBTQIA+ folks from workplace discrimination.”

MARIJUANA – Legalize marijuana?

Lindsey Graham – Mixed. Has supported protecting state medical legalization laws. Opposed SAFE Banking Amendment and opposes recreational legalization.

Jaime Harrison – Yes. “I think we should legalize, regulate and tax marijuana like we do alcohol and tobacco.”

MINIMUM WAGE – Raise federal hourly minimum wage above current $7.25?

Lindsey Graham – Mixed. Has mostly opposed and voted against, but, in 2017, proposed raising to $10.10 as incentive for Trump tax cuts.

Jaime Harrison – Yes. “I believe that a minimum wage is really, really important and, yes, I will increase the minimum wage.”

PLANNED PARENTHOOD – Support Planned Parenthood’s receiving public funds for non-abortion care?

Lindsey Graham – No. “I wholly support the defunding of Planned Parenthood.” Would not send “one penny of funding for Planned Parenthood.”

Jaime Harrison – No position found. Endorsed by Planned Parenthood.

POLICE/COMMUNITY ISSUES – Restrict police use of force and increase public oversight?

Lindsey Graham – Mixed. “If you’re subject to being sued, you act differently than if you’re not.” But he is against completely removing qualified immunity for police.

Jaime Harrison – Yes. Calls for “national use-of-force standard,” including ban on choke holds and ending qualified immunity. Must review “the militarization of our police force.”

STUDENT FINANCIAL AID – Support free or subsidized tuition for lower-income individuals?

Lindsey Graham – Mixed. Has previously supported the idea of letting students refinance loans at lower interest.

Jaime Harrison – Yes. Will “fight to end the student loan crisis in this country and make college affordable” but doesn’t spell out specific policies.

TAXES – Support administration’s $1.9 trillion (2017) tax cuts?

Lindsey Graham – Yes. Strong supporter. Argued that they would “help grow the economy,” and also were politically necessary.

Jaime Harrison – No. It gives “wealthy donors tax cuts.” Promises to repeal 2017 tax cuts.

Campus Election Engagement Project is a nonpartisan effort to help colleges engage students in elections. Sources include Votesmart.org, FactCheck.org, Politifact.com and candidate statements. Vote411.org and Ballotready.org offer guides to local races.