Above Photo of Dr. Bruce Fischer by Bill Friedman
By V. Susan Hutchinson
On Monday, September 19, the All In for South Carolina Tour came to Horry County. The tour has been traveling across the state to encourage people to get out and vote early. As SCDP Chair Trav Robertson said “we want to make this ‘Votober’.”
The All In event stopped in Little River at 9:30am and then traveled to Conway for an 11:45am start time. Local candidates spoke to attendees about what they stand for and what needs to change. Organizers also had plenty of candidate yard signs, buttons and All In t-shirts for attendees.
There were brief opening statements by the All In organizers, Trav Robertson and HCDP Chair Don Kohn, before the candidates addressed the crowd.
Dr. Bruce Fischer, candidate for SC House 56, reiterated the need to address flooding in Horry County. Fischer took the Trump administration to task for not listening to scientists and said that although he, personally, has not been affected by flooding, he has been cut off and unable to go anywhere when flooding occurs in his area.
Dr. Fischer, a retired clinical psychologist, knows first-hand the importance of listening to the science. “If you want to do something about a problem like flooding, you darn well better talk to the experts and not the politicians,” he said to applause from the crowd. “I’m not going to tell you what I would do,” he said, “because that really doesn’t matter. It’s what the experts say we should be doing.”
Tony Cahill, candidate for SC House 107, rallied the crowd by asking “Are you ready for some political football?” Cahill then rephrased the question to “Are you ready for real political change and progress?”, which drew cheers. As the subject of COVID-19 is on everyone’s mind, Cahill spoke a bit about it. He said that unlike the 1918 Spanish flu, which “took a break” and made people think it was going away, COVID-19 has taken no break and will continue to be with us until people take it seriously and a containment plan is implemented across the country.
Melissa Watson, candidate for the 7th Congressional District, was unable to attend. As her surrogate, state executive committeeman Cedric Blain Spain said “Melissa is the average person. She couldn’t be here because she’s a school teacher.” She knows what it is to work two additional jobs to subsize her teacher’s salary, he said.
Blain Spain said Watson is running for Congress because “She feels the burden and the need of every citizen of the 7th Congressional District of South Carolina.” As a teacher, Watson is concerned about education and the lack of broadband for remote learning during the pandemic.
Blain Spain reiterated that Watson, like the other candidates, is running to make a difference in infrastructure, education and healthcare. Healthcare is a major issue for Democrats and even though candidates don’t always have opportunities to go into statistics, Blain Spain said “we just have to shout it from the rooftops we are concerned about healthcare.” Everyone in the 7th District should have access to rural hospitals and shouldn’t have to drive long distances, which could risk their lives, to get to a hospital, he declared.
The event ended with a message from State Democratic Party Chairman Trav Robertson who talked about how Jaime Harrison broke his cycle of poverty and is now “the best hope for South Carolina.” Robertson observed that Congressman Tom Rice’s ads are echoing the same “coded language” that everyone has heard for the last four years; violence is taking over the suburbs, you stand with me if you are against antifa and support the police.
Robertson said we are not fooled by this language.
“They are running campaigns based on hate and fear and the things that divide us as a people”, he said, stressing that Democratic candidates like Harrison, Watson and all our local candidates are running campaigns to inspire people to come together for a better Horry County, South Carolina and America.