[image-1] As of last week, the candidates that the lucky voters in S.C.’s 5th District were choosing between included a congressman best known for recently wielding a loaded gun during a meeting, a former blue chip banker, an ex-clown.
According to divorce documents obtained by the P&C, Parnell reportedly struck his ex-wife in the 1970s. In a statement responding to the paper’s report, Parnell didn’t refute the allegations, saying that he’s regretted the incident “every single day since.” Parnell said the events and subsequent divorce in 1974 marked “monumental change” in his life.
Campaign staff reportedly confronted Parnell with the documents last week. Campaign manager Yates Baroody said she “immediately” resigned upon learning their details, telling P&C‘s Jamie Lovegrove, “He has no business running for Congress and he never did.”
[image-2] In the 2017 special election, called when Mick Mulvaney was drawn into the Trump administration, Parnell lost by just 3.2 percent to Ralph Norman, an Upstate developer and state House member. The race’s tight margin came as races elsewhere got more national press but ended up not finishing as close. Politico heralded it as “the Best Democratic campaign of 2017.” The rematch this year represented South Carolina Democrats’ best shot at earning a second seat in the state delegation.
Parnell has resisted calls to resign from the race, saying that the campaign was “never about me.”
Those who have withdrawn support and called on Parnell to step down include: State Dem Chair Trav Robertson, Former chair Jaime Harrison, former state Rep. Bakari Sellers, and Congressman Tim Ryan.
Democrats will choose who will face Norman in the November general election in the party primary on June 12. The other Democrats in the primary are: Mark Ali, Steve Lough (the clown), Sidney Moore.