McMaster draws laughs, lays out platform in Florence stop

November 3, 2018 GMT

FLORENCE – Gov. Henry McMaster made his final campaign stop in Florence on Friday morning.

McMaster, along with his running mate, Pamela Evette, an upstate businesswoman, appeared for a breakfast at Venus Restaurant at 8:45 a.m.

The governor drew three big laughs during his appearance.

First, after his daughter, Mary, fixed his hair before he began speaking, McMaster said that he hadn’t had time to get a haircut.

“Ain’t nobody got time for that,” McMaster said drawing a big laugh.

Later, he repeated the story of being the first candidate to endorse Donald Trump. McMaster said he received a call from the Trump campaign asking for him to meet with Trump to discuss an endorsement. McMaster said he asked the campaign whether anyone had endorsed Trump in the state.

The reply was no.

Eventually, McMaster asked if anyone anywhere had endorsed Trump.

The reply was also no.

“I said, ‘Perfect, I’ll do it,’” McMaster said.

The crowd laughed and then McMaster continued on to his next story.

“I was going up to the national convention in Cleveland— some of y’all might have been there,” McMaster said. “I called Peggy, my wife, and said, ‘Peggy, did you ever in your wildest dreams see your husband, Henry, going to nominate Donald Trump at the national convention.’ She says, ’Henry, I hate to tell you that I have never seen you in any of my wildest dreams.”

After the jokes, McMaster outlined his campaign platform of lowering taxes, eliminating regulations and working to make the Palmetto State safe and competitive.

McMaster also said he recently listened to Wilbur Ross, the U.S. secretary of commerce, speak regarding tariffs. McMaster said Ross spoke about how after World War II, the United States was the only industrial power at or near full capacity, so tariffs were enacted to help build the industries of the countries affected by the war. Now, McMaster summarized, the tariffs were beginning to hurt the United States.

Evette also spoke about her ability to bring a fresh perspective to the office of lieutenant governor because of her background in business.

Also appearing were Florence County Council Chairman Kent Caudle, state Reps. Phillip Lowe and Jay Jordan, Republican probate judge candidate Jesse Cartrette Jr., Florence School District One Board of Trustees member Trisha Caulder, Florence County Sheriff Kenney Boone and school board candidate Hannah E. Parker.

McMaster, who was appointed the state’s 117 th governor following Nikki Haley’s resignation, is running against Democrat James Smith for a full term in the governor’s mansion. Before being elected to the lieutenant governor position in 2015, McMaster was elected state attorney general in 2002 and 2006, served as the state chair of the Republican Party from 1993 until his election to the attorney general, and served as attorney general from 1981 to 1985.

He also served on the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education and the South Carolina Policy Council. A lawyer by trade, McMaster graduated from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 1973 and the University of South Carolina in 1969.

The election is scheduled for Tuesday.