Local, Politics

Special election to be held Nov. 14 for SC House District 28 seat

When Eric Bedingfield submitted a letter of resignation to the Speaker of the House of Representatives stating that he will resign on January 18th, a time table for a special election to fill that vacancy started. Although his August 29 resignation letter made no reference to why he was resigning he did offer on Facebook a short time later that he was leaving to take another job as a governmental affairs director at Greenville Technical College. According to the college’s website he is listed now as the Director of Governmental Affairs.

The Speaker of the House of Representative issued a Writ of Election based on the time line stated in SC Law, 7-13-190.  That Writ of Election, based on the receipt of the resignation letter, established the filing beginning on the third Friday following the letter of resignation and that filing would close 8 days following (as stated in the law). A primary must be held on the eleventh Tuesday after the vacancy occurs: November 14. A runoff primary must be held on the thirteenth Tuesday after the vacancy occurs: November 28. The special election must be on the twentieth Tuesday after the vacancy occurs.  The newly elected official may not take office until the vacancy actually occurs.”
Therefore, the election to fill the office for SC House District 28 will be held on January 16th.  Greenville County will certify the results of the election on January 19th and the State Election Commission will certify the election and declare a winner within a few days of the County certification of election results.  At that time, the newly elected person can then be sworn into office. I would speculate that the newly elected person will take office at the beginning of the daily session of the SC House of Representatives at Noon on Tuesday, January 23rd, 2018, to fill the remainder of the term of office.
At this time, four candidates filed for the Republican Primary nomination.  No Democrats or other party candidates have filed.  The deadline for a petition to be submitted to place a name on the ballot for January 16th is Noon, November 17th.

Four Republicans are vying for the district 28 seat
Krystal Blume
Jonathan Smith
Ashley Trantham
Bill Welch

The Primary is November 14, runoff (if needed) is November 28th.

Each candidate was asked by email to respond to the following questions for this article.

  • Why did you run for the House?
  • If elected, what would you like to accomplish?
  • What are some of your qualifications and experiences?
  • What is your profession now? Tell a little about your family, spouse, children, grands…
  • Krystal Blume

Why did you decide to run for the house?

I decided to run for the House of Representatives District 28 position to bring accountability to Columbia. The Good ole boy system needs to be held accountable for their actions and decisions. We the citizens need to have a recall law.
If elected, what would you like to accomplish?
I will seek to cut wasteful spending in state government, fully fund the Local Government Fund, and oppose new taxes. I will vote against any proposed budget that does not significantly curb South Carolina’s dependence on the Federal dole, which currently provides 39% of annual state money.  I will seek to cut wasteful spending in state government, fully fund the Local Government Fund, and oppose new taxes. We need our roads fixed. But there must be real reform and more accountability in our department of transportation.  Now that the gas tax increase is law, we must make sure the money is being spent properly and that we get our fair share to truly fix our roads, not just pave the pockets of the bureaucrats.  I will work every day to hold the D.O.T. and our government more accountable. I will work to improve education and vigorously defend teachers. Columbia is broken! We need ethics and judicial reform.
What are some of your qualifications and experiences?
I am the mother of a special needs child. I have fought the bureaucracy for my child and many other families in this district to help cut the red tape and get services that were greatly needed!! This type of advocacy has taught and prepared me to fight the bureaucracy in Columbia and hold our elected officials accountable!!
What is your profession now?

I am an Admissions Counselor for Greenville Health System. I am currently in the business office on Labor and Delivery. Tell a little about your family, spouse, children, grands…

My husband and I have been married for 12 years. He is truly the love of my life and my best friend. My daughter, Jessica is 17. She will be starting Greenville Technical College in the spring. She works part time at BI-LO and is a ball of energy. My baby is 11 today. Nic has autism and dyslexia, along with many other disabilities. He has taught me that a child is a child, no matter what their disability may be and all children respond to friendship!  I believe in accessibility and ask that anyone that would like to meet me face to face or talk, please call me at 864-832-5149

Ashley Trantham

Why did you decide to run for the house?
I’ve felt for some time that God had been stirring my nest and preparing me for something, but honestly never imagined it would be in the political arena.  I was approached by numerous community leaders and neighbors, asking me to run so I decided to talk with my family, pray, and seek Godly counsel before answering.  It became clear to me that there was a unique opportunity to serve the people of district 28 and I believe that I was up for the task.  Politics has been too divisive with not enough getting done for the common folk.  I want to go to Columbia, shake things up, and bring common sense conservative solutions and results for the people of this district.

If  elected, what would you like to accomplish?
First, I would like to get government spending under control and make it easier for small businesses to succeed.  We need to cut bureaucratic red tape, and get government back to the essentials: protecting life, liberty, and property.  I will work with members on both sides of the aisle to find common sense solutions to improve the lives of our constituents, make a better future for our children, and protect our constitutional rights and the rights of the unborn.

What are some of your qualifications and experiences?
I believe the best qualification for a public servant is to be able to honestly and faithfully represent their constituents in office.  My husband and I have been active members of this community, raised our kids here,           work on a dairy farm here, and have a vested state in this community.  I’ve never shied away from public service and have always been willing to step up when called on.  For example, recently I worked with C-Funds Committee to secure funding for a much-needed turning lane in front of Fork Shoals Elementary School.  I believe we need less professional politicians and more common sense conservatives in office and I will always be accessible and accountable to the people of district 28.

What is your profession now?
I have been blessed in helping turn the Trantham Dairy Farm into Happy Cow Creamery.  I also work in real estate.

Tell a little about your family, spouse, children, grands… I’m married to Tom Trantham III and we have two children: Bryce (18) and Thomas (14).  Fifteen years ago, my husband and I moved back to his family’s dairy farm to help build his dad’s dream: Happy Cow Creamery.  We’ve been active members of the community, our children have been raised and go to school here, we are members of Washington Baptist Church, and it would be an honor to serve as your next State Representative.  Feel free to visit www.tranthamforschouse.com for more details and to keep in touch with the campaign.

Jonathan Smith
Why did you decide to run for the House?

South Carolina is a special place, and I see it on the precipice of greatness. We have the best workforce, greatest towns, and kindest people in the country. I wanted to be in a leadership position at this time, because this time is special. The 21st century is still in its adolescence, and with the right people who have the right vision at the right moment, South Carolina can truly lead the way and make the 21st century the new American century.

If elected, what would you like to accomplish? If the people bless me with the honor of representing their interests in Columbia, I’d like to focus on infrastructure development, and reforming our entire education system. I would like to see an education system that seeks to impart a love of knowledge as opposed to teaching kids how to take a test. I also want to see a statewide effort that reintroduces a strict discipline code in the classroom and brings back respect.

What are some of your qualifications and experiences? My number one qualification is concerned citizen who cares. Today in government, not enough people participate in the process. A representative government in its truest sense should have people from all walks of life. It should include both business owners and hourly workers, farmers and mechanics, young and old, rich and poor, blue collar and white collar. A good representative should have a vast array of life experiences, and I have that. I’ve worked on a farm, and an assembly line. I’ve been a vending machine route salesperson, and a blackjack dealer. I’ve been a firefighter and white water raft guide. These experiences have given me one thing that can’t be bought. The opportunity to talk to people from all walks of life. However, other qualifications I have are the fact that I hold a bachelor’s degree from Lander University in Government and History. I’ve volunteered my time as a volunteer firefighter/first responder, and am a lieutenant in the SC State Guard. I love staying active in my community, and will always be doing something to help whether it be large or small.

What is your profession now? Currently pivoting from the education field to real estate.

Tell a little about your family, spouse, children, grands?
My father inspired in me my love of government and history. I lost him at a young age, but I never lost my love of those two things. My mother sacrificed a ton after my father passed away to provide me with opportunities I wouldn’t have had otherwise. Without her sacrifice, I wouldn’t have been able to go to college, pursue a career, and run for state house. I’m still in my early 30s, so I haven’t settled down yet, but hope to one day. If elected, my complete and total focus however will be on serving the residents of District 28 in the SC House. God Bless, and thanks for reading the novel I wrote here. God Bless. Your friend, Jonathan

The same five questions were offered to Mr. Bill Welch. At press time we have not received a response from him however, his name will appear on the ballot.♦


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