Endorsement Process

Our Endorsement Process/Principles

SC Equality Coalition and SC Equality PAC endorses viable candidates running for local office, statewide offices, the state legislature and Congress who have a proven track record of supporting equal rights and legal protections for LGBT@ South Carolinians and who are committed to advancing these goals in their capacity as elected officials.

Endorsement by SC Equality Coalition and SC Equality PAC requires completion of a candidate questionnaire and candidate interviews. Candidates who are interested in our endorsement should contact Jeff Ayers at jeffayers@scequality.org as early as possible to inform us of your candidacy.

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SC Equality’s 2020 Voter’s Guide includes candidates for federal, state and local elections.  Our endorsements are made by SC Equality Coalition (501(c)4) for presidential and congressional races and by SC Equality PAC (Political Action Committee) for all state and local elections.  

The following endorsed candidates are part our 1st round of endorsements and we are currently in the process of interviewing candidates for our 2nd round of endorsements.  (If you don’t see a candidate listed below, rest assured that this is not our complete list for the upcoming November General Election.) 

The following list was updated on September 2, 2020.  Our next round of endorsements will be added within the next two weeks.

OUR ENDORSEMENT PROCESS/PRINCIPLES

There are two forms of endorsements from SC Equality.

SC Equality Coalition: a 501(c)4 political organization, the political advocacy arm of SC Equality. In addition to being the only LGBTQ organization with full-time lobbyist at the Statehouse, it’s second function is to endorse candidates in presidential and congressional elections.

SC Equality PAC: the political action committee of SC Equality and it’s core focus is endorsing pro-equality candidates for statewide and local elections in South Carolina.

SC Equality Coalition Principles and Policies of Candidate Endorsement

I. Name and Mission Statement

South Carolina Equality Coalition, Inc., a 501 (c)(4) political organization focused on advocacy and legislation: is South Carolina’s statewide organization that advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBTQ+) equality through participation in lobbying at the South Carolina Statehouse and the electoral process at the federal level (presidential and congressional).

II. Statement of Purpose

The primary purpose of the South Carolina Equality Coalition, Inc. is to engage in lobbying the legislature and other policy makers throughout the state to enact fair legislation to advance equality for LGBTQ+ South Carolinians and participate in the electoral process at the federal level (presidential and congressional).

III. Endorsement Principles

  • The SC Equality Coalition reserves the right to endorse no candidate in any single race.
  • The SC Equality Coalition reserves the right to endorse multiple candidates in a single race.
  • The SC Equality Coalition will:
    • Focus efforts on presidential and congressional races.
    • Consider a candidate in selected races with potential for significant impact.
    • Use a candidate questionnaire as part of the process of evaluating a candidate for endorsement. However, reserves the right to use the candidates voting record and public statements if they have held public office.
    • Target efforts and resources as deemed feasible and appropriate.
    • Consider the viability of candidate’s campaigns in making endorsement decisions.
  • The SC Equality Coalition will not:
    • Endorse a candidate simply because she or he is LGBTQ+.
    • Endorse a candidate whose record indicates a clear hostility toward the rights of LGBTQ+ people.
    • Endorse a candidate who does not want our endorsement.
    • Endorse a candidate for a state and local office (SC Equality Coalition only).

IV. SC Equality Coalition Endorsement Process

A survey including questions about issues core to LGBTQ+ communities will be prepared, submitted to the Candidate, and reviewed by the SC Equality Coalition Board (presidential and congressional). These questions will encompass the core values as stated in the SC Equality Coalition’s Statement of Purpose and include questions concerning equality of LGBTQ+ people.

The SC Equality Coalition Board will select candidates to interview based on answers to the survey. A list of recommended endorsements will be presented to the appropriate full Board by designated Board Members.

The SC Equality Coalition Board must approve the recommendations by a simple majority vote. An endorsement in each race must be approved separately.

SC Equality PAC Principles and Policies of Candidate Endorsement

I. Name and Mission Statement

The SC Equality Political Action Committee (PAC) hereafter known as the “SC Equality PAC” is South Carolina’s statewide organization that advocates for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBTQ+) equality through participation in the electoral process at the state and local level.

II. Statement of Purpose

The primary purpose of the SC Equality PAC is to secure, defend, and protect equal rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBTQ+) people in South Carolina through the political and electoral process; especially the election of fair-minded candidates for state and local offices. It was established under the laws of the State of South Carolina in 2011.

III. Endorsement Principles

  • The SC Equality PAC reserves the right to endorse no candidate in any single race.
  • The SC Equality PAC reserves the right to endorse multiple candidates in a single race.
  • The SC Equality PAC will:
    • Focus efforts on state races but will also consider many local races.
    • Consider a candidate in selected races with potential for significant impact.
    • Use a candidate questionnaire as part of the process of evaluating a candidate for endorsement. However, reserves the right to use the candidates voting record and public statements if they have held public office.
    • Target efforts and resources as deemed feasible and appropriate.
    • Consider the viability of candidate’s campaigns in making endorsement decisions.
  • The SC Equality PAC will not:
    • Endorse a candidate simply because she or he is LGBTQ+.
    • Endorse a candidate whose record indicates a clear hostility toward the rights of LGBTQ+ people.
    • Endorse a candidate who does not want our endorsement.
    • Endorse a candidate for a Federal office (SC Equality PAC only).

IV. SC Equality PAC Endorsement Process

A survey including questions about issues core to LGBTQ+ communities will be prepared, submitted to the Candidate, and reviewed by the SC Equality PAC Board (state and local). These questions will encompass the core values as stated in the SC Equality PAC’s Statement of Purpose and include questions concerning equality of LGBTQ+ people.

The SC Equality PAC Board will select candidates to interview based on answers to the survey. A list of recommended endorsements will be presented to the appropriate full Board by designated Board Members.

The SC Equality PAC Board must approve the recommendations by a simple majority vote. An endorsement in each race must be approved separately.

Learn more about SC Equality PAC visit their website.

Be Informed. Know which candidates support full lived equality in S.C.

In addition to the state and local candidates above, SC Equality has compiled a comprehensive 2020 LGBTQ Voter Guide to help you make an informed decision on which candidates deserve your vote. We not only have interviewed the candidates we are endorsing this year, we have worked side by side with all incumbents seeking re-election and fully endorse all candidates (federal, state and local) listed in the 2020 LGBTQ Voter Guide.

First, commit to vote in November. Second, review the Voter Guide and help elect pro-equality candidates on November 3rd.

2020 LGBTQ VOTER GUIDE

Since 2012, we’ve compiled candidate research and endorsements to help you cast an informed vote. LGBTQ South Carolinians make up a substantial voting block and our voice matters in elections.

Endorsed Candidates

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