Green Eugene Platts Nets .5% of the Vote In Special Congressional Election in South Carolina

On May 7th, the special congressional election for the 1st district was held to determine who will succeed former GOP congressman Tim Scott, who was appointed to the U.S. Senate to replace Jim DeMint in January. Former congressman and governor Mark Sanford won the election. Here are the results:

Mark Sanford – Republican- 77,466 – 54.04%

Elizabeth Colbert Busch – Democrat – 64,818 – 45.21%

Eugene Platt – Green – 690 – 0.48%

Write-in – 380 – 0.27%


Green Party candidate Platt is the only Green elected to public office in South Carolina.  He is the James Island Public Service Commissioner. He earlier stated that his goal was to get at least 10% of the vote.

The South Carolina Green Party thanked him for his race:

The Steering Committee of the South Carolina Green Party thanks Eugene Platt for his good work and strong effort in running as the Green nominee in the 1st Congressional District special election.

The media and a large part of the public have been distracted by the celebrity and notoriety of the two major party candidates, Eugene Platt stood as a public servant, a native Charlestonian, and a responsible, thoughtful progressive.

Eugene discussed national health care, a non-interventionist foreign policy, the sanctity of labor rights, and the importance of spending on social services rather than expensive and wasteful military programs.  If it was not for Eugene’s contributions, this campaign would have been entirely content-free and personality driven.

The public is better served by a diversity of voices and viewpoints representing all parts of the political spectrum.   The Charleston Patch did a disservice to the people of South Carolina, when they reduce political debate to an empty, content-free show.   The Working Families Party misled thousands of pro-union voters into supporting an anti-union candidate. This blind commitment to horserace politics does not serve the public interest.

We commend the League of Women Voters and the NAACP for holding nonpartisan, inclusive events that encouraged discussion and promoted democracy.

Eugene Platt was able to give progressives a reason to vote, to organize and to join the Green Party.  After Colbert-Busch’s outrageous statement that she was “proud” of South Carolina’s deplorable anti-union reputation, we were proud to offer a humane alternative in Eugene that workers and progressives could endorse.  The campaign has been a success in these terms.

18 thoughts on “Green Eugene Platts Nets .5% of the Vote In Special Congressional Election in South Carolina

  1. Krzysztof Lesiak Post author

    First off, congrats to Mark Sanford. I’m a fan, and I wish him well in Congress. In my opinion this is a big victory for the Liberty Movement.

    I will likely join the LP when I turn 18 out of principle… however.

    If I were this guy, I’d be so fucking depressed out of my mind. 0.48%…wow. I’m sure that’s cuz he was viewed as a spoiler and people wanted to get the vote out for Colbert’s sister and they thought that the Democratic machine could win this conservative district with boatloads of money.

    Seriously though, for those third party people that have been involved in them for a while… what fucking point is there to pour your heart and energy into a race and then not be able to even capture HALF OF ONE PERCENT OF THE VOTE? What fucking point is there to running? Seriously….the Republican route is looking more attractive than ever. I didn’t think that Platt would do this bad… and his results are quite frankly, so pathetic. I feel for him.

    What’s the fucking point of running when you know your chances of winning are -1,000,000% and you can’t even capture a half of a percent? What’s the point?

    This is why looking it on from the outside is so depressing. I want to win elections… not just make a statement, but actually WIN. And sadly, other than local level, third parties never win anything. ANYTHING. It’s sad.

  2. Anon

    Mark Sanford isn’t even close to being an ally of the liberty movement.

  3. Krzysztof Lesiak Post author

    From Darryl W. Perry:

    C held the special election to replace Tim Scott yesterday. The Working Family Party received 3.35%; Elizabeth Colbert Busch was the WFP nominee. Eugene Platt’s 690 votes earned him just under half of one percent.
    There were also 383 write-in votes accounting for 0.27% of the vote.
    Richard Winger reports this is the best showing in the 1st District for the WFP.

  4. Deran

    I can’t see how anyone ever thought Mr. Platt would do any better than this in one of the very most reactionary states in the union?

    South Carolina hasn’t voted in any numbers for a progressive since James Weaver and the Populist Party in 1896.

    Working Families Party are lap dogs for the Democrats.

    I’d rather be right than win. Platt’s candidacy probably illuminated a few people that there are options out side the duopoly. And for that he effort is worthy.

  5. Sam Kress

    “Mark Sanford isn’t even close to being an ally of the liberty movement.”


  6. paulie


    The point of running is to incrementally build party organization and exert pressure on the larger parties to change policy. It’s a long term strategy. Short term wins don’t happen much, but then the so called libertarian Republicans that get elected are usually not all that libertarian, so where are the wins?

  7. Thane Eichenauer

    For those above who doubt that Mark Sanford is an ally of the liberty movement I would ask them to pay attention next time there is a vote to increase the national debt ceiling and to speculate as to which way Elizabeth Colbert Bush would have voted.

  8. paulie

    Or a vote about the drug war, patriot act, military issues, domestic surveillance, federal prisons, police powers, gay rights, immigration…


  9. Stewart Flood

    This was an ugly campaign. I am glad it is over, however, (again being the only person here who has actually personally known Mark Sanford since before he was first elected to Congress in 1994), I consider this a serious blow to the cause.

    Look at his voting history. Yes, he is a “friend” at times on economic issues, but not completely. He is certainly not a friend of liberty on anything else.

  10. anon

    @9: Based on your example, most statist neocons fall into your interpretation of “ally of the liberty movement.”

  11. Darryl W. Perry

    Romney won the 1st District by 18%, and that District has been a pretty safe District for the GOP sin 1980; I doubt many saw Platt as a potential “spoiler.”

  12. Stewart Flood


    No, they didn’t. But a Libertarian usually gets 2% or better in this district. This special election was a demolition derby. 16 candidates in the primary, with Sanford getting in the race last. He did this running for Governor in 2002. I remember talking to him about it the day after he announced.

    He will run for President the same way. I am guessing 2020. By then the trail will have grown old and voters will not care. They clearly did not care on Tuesday.

  13. Richard Winger

    Minor party members have won many partisan elections in recent decades. Libertarian nominees who were not also major party nominees have won partisan elections in Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Vermont, and Wisconsin.

  14. paulie

    District has been a pretty safe District for the GOP sin 1980; I doubt many saw Platt as a potential “spoiler.”

    Polls were pretty close this time due to Sanford scandal. He won despite the scandal because it is a heavily Republican district, but by a narrower margin than Republicans typically do.

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