It was a given Monday night that a congressional debate among three Republicans fighting to win the party’s nomination would be dramatic. And yes, there were jeers, hoots and hollering. But few expected one of the candidates, longshot Lynz Piper-Loomis, to throw support immediately to challenger Katie Arrington and leave the stage with flair.

Now the race finds the freshman incumbent, U.S. Rep. Nancy Mace, with just one primary opponent, Arrington, who lost the race in 2018, but has since been endorsed by former President Donald Trump. The primary is June 14. The winner will face Dr. Annie Andrews in November.

In other recent headlines:

McMaster signs bill to expand women’s access to birth control. Gov. Henry McMaster on Monday signed a measure that would make birth control pills available without a prescription as a way to help women avoid unwanted pregnancies that could lead to abortions.

More shootings in S.C.  Seven were injured early Monday by gunfire at the Blue Note Bistro in North Charleston. Four teens died over the weekend in two different shootings near Newberry. A 6-year-old was shot in Orangeburg County.

Charleston school board approves budget with $2K teacher raise. The board approved a $639 million budget with a raise for teachers and staff, but a smaller tax increase than originally envisioned. Meanwhile, six CCSD administrators got five-figure raises.

Lowcountry Local First to get $789K in federal funds. U.S. Rep. Jim Clyburn on Monday announced Lowcountry Local First will get almost $800,000 for its Good Growth initiative to help small, local and minority-owned businesses.

Spoleto Festival USA unveils 2022 poster. The colorful work by Christopher Myers is thought to celebrate hope and candor.

Middleton to enter mayor’s race in Charleston. Clay Middleton is expected to launch a mayoral bid in Charleston today that takes on incumbent John Tecklenburg in 2023.

Former Beaufort mayor in boating accident. Former Beaufort Mayor Billy Keyserling, injured Saturday in a boating accident, has been hospitalized. The former mayor reportedly was severely injured but “recovering well.”

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