By MIKE McCOMBS
If you like the way Tom Davis has conducted his business in the South Carolina State Senate since 2009, you will have the opportunity to keep him there in November.
Davis, who has lived in Beaufort County for more than 35 years, announced Monday, March 9 he intended to run for re-election to the S.C. Senate for District 46, which includes parts of Beaufort and Jasper counties. Governor Mark Sanford’s former chief of staff, Davis was first elected in 2008.
“Our district and this state have unlimited potential,” Davis said in a release. “The question is whether we are advancing solutions that will unlock that potential in ways that promote prosperity, freedom and free markets.”
In recent years, Davis has been noted for his support for legalizing medical marijuana and restructuring the way in which South Carolina spends money dedicated to roads and bridges, taking politics out of the equation and addressing much-needed repairs instead of new projects.
His re-election media release touts the legislation Davis has authored that has become law. Among those bills are:
Act 191: Expanding markets for wind insurance and lowering homeowners’ premiums;
Act 194: Legalizing social games of chance like poker, bridge, and mah-jongg;
Act 221: Legalizing the consumption of cannabis oil by those with epilepsy;
Act 234: Expanding nurse practitioners’ scope of practice;
Act 162: Creating a cause of action against companies that target and defraud seniors;
Act 62: Subjecting utility monopolies to competition and promoting renewable energy;
Act 32: Expanding physician’s assistants’ scope of practice.
“Tom Davis is truly a champion for the people he represents – ensuring they get a fair deal from the General Assembly – and also for citizens and taxpayers across the state who want a more open and accountable government,” State Senate President Sen. Harvey Peeler said in a release. “He is respected by his colleagues in both chambers and by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle for his principled, intelligent advocacy on behalf of what he believes.”
Davis has received “Legislator of the Year” awards from a broad range of groups, including the South Carolina Club for Growth and the S.C. Association of Taxpayers, the Conservation Voters of South Carolina and Sierra Club South Carolina (for opposing offshore drilling, protecting the environment, and championing renewable energy), and the American Association of Nurse Practitioners and the S.C. Public Health Association (for increasing access to healthcare, especially in rural areas).
“I am a state senator, and I am passionate about effecting change to improve the lives of all South Carolinians,” Davis said. “But I also have a special obligation to the people of Beaufort and Jasper counties – to make sure they are treated equitably when the state decides how to spend our tax dollars. Before I was elected in 2008, our area wasn’t being treated fairly – but we are now.
“For example,” he continued, “USC Beaufort used to be funded at only 38 percent of the statewide per-pupil average; now, in 2020, after many years of hard work and advocacy, it will be funded at 100 percent. And there’s been progress like that for our area across the board – on roads and bridges, K-12 education, economic development, and more. I am running for re-election to the South Carolina Senate in order to continue and build on these legislative accomplishments.”
Davis’ opposition is Democrat Nathan Campbell, an educator.