SC Rep. Sanford predicts defeat; 4 other states vote

Runoff for SC GOP gubernatorial race; Rep. Smith wins Dem primary

Rep. Mark Sanford, one of President Donald Trump's sharpest Republican critics, was ousted by a primary challenger on Tuesday after Trump waged an extraordinary last-minute effort to defeat him.

"Based on the number I see, I think that I'll end up losing this election", he said.

That's the lesson many Republicans are drawing from Rep. Mark Sanford's surprise defeat Tuesday in his primary election in SC.

The congressman, former governor and one-time presidential aspirant was trailing a little-known state lawmaker who slammed him for his repeated criticism of President Trump, the latest sign that the most risky thing to do in the modern GOP is dare to take on the president.

It's true that Sanford's six-day disappearance during July 2009-when he was supposedly hiking a portion of the Appalachian Trail, but was actually having an extramarital affair with an Argentine woman, María Belén Chapur-changed the course of his political career.

South Carolina Congressman Mark Sanford (R) lost the GOP primary campaign on Tuesday.

Donald Trump launched an unusual attack against a sitting House Republican only hours before polls closed in Tuesday's primary election.

And in the 3rd District, philanthropist Susie Lee is favored in the Democratic primary, while Republicans could choose Danny Tarkanian, the son of the legendary UNLV basketball coach Jerry Tarkanian, who dropped his Senate bid at the urging of Trump.

Rep. Martha Roby, for example, was forced into a runoff last week after her opponents seized on her own rift with the president.

Republicans asked their primary voters Tuesday if they supported bringing the SC tax code into "conformity with the new Trump tax cuts".

"Why don't we just start to say it has devolved into a cult?"

"I wasn't particularly impressed", Sanford told The Washington Post at the time.

"In response to the president's tweet, Michigan Rep. Justin Amash came to his colleague's defense, hitting back at Trump's remarks by replying, "@MarkSanford's job is to support and defend the Constitution. The chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors, who was sacked from the Trump campaign, was the frontrunner, but his win over state Delegate Nick Freitas still upset more moderate Republicans.

While Sanford had already expressed reservations at his chances of winning, Trump's tweet appeared to be the nail in his coffin.

'She is tough on crime and will continue our fight to lower taxes.

To date, 476 women have filed to run for the House in 2018, according to the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University, surpassing the 272 who filed in 2016. "I'm for ideas that I've long stood for in my entirety of my time in office, '" he said.

If no candidate wins a majority of the vote, the top two will head to a runoff on June 26 to decide the party's nominee. Dimitri Cherny, as well as Democrats Joe Cunningham and Toby Smith, are also running.

Sanford has held the seat since a special election in 2013, but faces a tight challenge in the GOP primary from Arrington, a first-term S.C. House member.

He said Tuesday he planned to wage a "vicious" campaign against Kaine.

Democrats will also be watching the outcomes of Virginia's 2nd District (GOP Rep. Scott Taylor), 7th District (GOP Rep. Dave Brat) and 5th District (retiring GOP Rep. Tom Garrett), where they hope to be competitive in the fall. Heidi Heitkamp's seat in a state President Trump won by more than 30 points in 2016.

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