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Politicking under the tent
Democratic state House District 13 candidate Bob Merritt addresses the crowd Thursday during the Citizens for Better Government Voter/Candidate Stump Meeting. (Chris Trainor | Index-Journal)
Candidates gather for Citizens for Better Government stump meeting
5/25/2012 12:00:00 AM
By CHRIS TRAINOR
There wasn't a circus, but there was certainly a great deal of political talk under the big top Thursday night.
More than 130 people gathered Thursday under a large tent in front of The Rental Center on Calhoun Road to hear from numerous candidates for office in the Voter/Candidate Stump Meeting, an event sponsored by the Greenwood Citizens for Better Government and the Greenwood Association of Realtors.
All candidates for Greenwood-related elected offices - whether they are opposed or unopposed - were invited to the stump meeting, with 18 attending the event.
Candidates who attended included state House District 13 candidates Bob Merritt and Shannon Riley, state Senate District 10 candidate Jennings McAbee, state Senate District 4 candidate Riley Harvell, Clerk of Court candidates Chastity Sheek and Jane Harvey, Greenwood County Council District 5 candidates Patrick Moody and Steve Brown, Eighth Circuit Solicitor candidates Jerry Peace, Ben Shealy, David Stumbo and Robert Tinsley, Third Congressional District candidate Cason Gaither, state House District 14 candidate Mike Pitts, Greenwood County Coroner candidates Sonny Cox and Marcia Kelley Clark, Sheriff Tony Davis and Greenwood County Council Chairman Robbie Templeton.
While one might expect sparks to fly with 18 candidates gathered under one tent, the event was largely a civil affair, with moderators Jerry Spearman and Lew Dorrity and timekeeper Kay Dangerfield maintaining order throughout the evening.
There were several moments of vigorous debate during the evening. Perhaps the most spirited discussion came during a back-and-forth between longtime incumbent District 5 Councilman Moody and his challenger Brown, a three-decade veteran of local government.
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