The Republican race to represent Daniel Island and parts of Berkeley County and East Cooper in the Statehouse is going to a runoff between Realtor Nancy Mace and former Mount Pleasant Town Councilman Mark Smith.
In Tuesday's special primary, none of the four candidates broke the 50 percent mark needed to avoid a runoff election, though Mace came close.
With all precincts reporting in the state House District 99 special primary, Mace received 49.4 percent of the turnout, or 1,290 votes, while Smith collected 27 percent, or 714 votes, according to unofficial returns.
The runoff will be Nov. 28.
Daniel Island attorney Shawn Pinkston placed third with roughly 14 percent of the vote, while Jarrod Brooks, a franchise and business consultant, finished fourth with almost 9 percent of the vote.
Mace, the first woman to graduate from The Citadel Corps of Cadets, said she was undeterred after learning the results.
"Thankful. Grateful. Humble. Eager. I'm ready to get to work on the next phase of the race and continue advancing the positive, substantive message of common sense conservatism," Mace said in a statement to The Post and Courier.
"Campaigns are about choices and today voters cast their ballots overwhelmingly in our favor," she added and that "I look forward to continue sharing my vision of leadership as an outsider."
Smith said he would keep hitting the pavement to get votes.
"It's crazy, it's crazy. We're a little anxious and a little tired, but we're excited," Smith said, adding that he felt his campaign had just started to really gain momentum. "We feel very confident that we can rally up the supporters and come up with an updated strategy to come out on top in two weeks."
Turnout for the special GOP election for the seat last held by Statehouse corruption figure Jim Merrill was extremely light.
Berkeley County elections director Adam M. Hammons said during the day he expected about 10 percent of eligible voters to take part. All told, roughly 9 percent of eligible registered voters in Berkeley County would cast a ballot, while about 7 percent of such Charleston County voters did the same.
The winner of the Nov. 28 runoff will face face Democrat Cindy Boatwright in a special election January 16.