Newcomer Sean Bennett battles incumbent Mike Rose for Summerville-area state Senate 38 seat
SUMMERVILLE — Both conservative Republican candidates for the S.C. Senate 38 seat want the same thing— leaner, more efficient government.
MIKE ROSE (Incumbent)
Family: Wife, two children, three grandchildren.
Education: B.S., U.S. Air Force Academy; J.D., New York University School of Law; M.B., Harvard Business School
Occupation: Attorney, businessman.
Previous elected office: S.C. Senate, 1988-1997, 2008-present.
Why are you running for office?: “I get great satisfaction by cutting through the bureaucracy to make government work for the people.”
What’s the toughest issue facing the state?: Restructuring government to make it more efficient, effective, accountable and transparent; providing adequate schools and roads.
Each of the two says he’s the better man to do the job.
S.C. Senate 38 candidates
Family: Wife, two
Education: B.A., University of South Carolina.
Occupation: Financial planner.
Previous elected office: None.
Why are you running for office?: “We have a broken tax policy in this state that’s been created in piecemeal form.”
What’s the toughest issue facing the state?: Job creation, capital investment.
Financial planner and political race newcomer Sean Bennett faces attorney and veteran lawmaker Mike Rose in the primary election June 12.
The seat represents much of lower Dorchester County around Summerville and a portion of Charleston County south of County Line Road.
The party has a tight hold on the seat, in an area considered anti-tax conservative. Rose has held it twice.
So this campaign has become a battle less over priorities than performance.
“The difference between (Bennett) and me is I’m already doing what he says he wants to do,” Rose said. “There’s absolutely nothing he can do in the legislature that I can’t do better.”
His years in the Senate give Rose the experience, knowledge and seniority to bring more tax money home to the district, he said.
“To get it done, you build on what I’m already doing. Don’t start over with a rookie.”
Both candidates believe in government reform and fiscal responsibility, Bennett said. But Bennett said he wants to take on issues like tax reform comprehensively; Rose believes in taking it on incrementally.
“His rate of advancement of bills is very low and the number of bills he submits each session very high,” Bennett said. “I just don’t see the results and experience working for the people. There’s just not a lot that gets advanced in his agenda.”
Reach Bo Petersen at 937-5744, @bopete on Twitter or Bo Petersen Reporting on Facebook.