Pat McKinney, a retired Charleston developer, announced Monday he will run for lieutenant governor as a Republican and would work as closely as possible with Gov. Nikki Haley to bring jobs to the state.
McKinney, 63, might end up challenging another Charleston Republican, current Lt. Gov. Glenn McConnell, who has not publicly announced his plans for next year.
In 2018, both the governor and lieutenant governor will run on the same ticket, but they will run separate campaigns next year.
“Wouldn’t it be wonderful if South Carolina had a lieutenant governor who was more impactful and assumed a more focused role bringing economic development to our state?” McKinney said. “Why wait until 2019?”
McKinney called Haley “a fabulous person from the standpoint of recruiting businesses to this state,” but added Haley did not urge him to run, “and I’ve got no expectations she will endorse my candidacy.”
“If you look back in recent years, there’s not been a lieutenant governor and governor who have worked together as cooperatively and effectively as I think they can,” McKinney said.
McKinney said he also would eliminate the position’s security detail and driver, a step that he said would save hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Democratic State Rep. Bakari Sellers, of Denmark, announced earlier this year he will run for lieutenant governor as well.
McKinney has raised $522,339 for his bid, including a $245,000 loan. McConnell has $258,961 on hand, while Sellers has $72,089 on hand, according to their most recent campaign reports.
Reach Robert Behre at 937-5771.