Lindsey Graham's 17-Year Run as SC Senator Now a Toss Up With Democrat Jaime Harrison

The South Carolina Senate election is now a toss-up between 17-year Senator Lindsey Graham and Democratic candidate Jaime Harrison, according to the Cook Political Report.

The Cook Political Report rates election races in each state and analyzes the vulnerability of Senate races. According to the report, the South Carolina Senate election is now a toss-up, meaning that either party has a good chance of winning the election.

Graham has served as a South Carolina senator since 2003 but several polls show the incumbent senator tied with Harrison.

A recent poll conducted by Data for Progress found 47 percent of likely voters in South Carolina saying they'd vote for Graham, while 46 percent chose Harrison. This poll surveyed 824 likely voters in the state from September 23 to September 28 and reported a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.

Another poll, conducted by Quinnipiac University found the two tied at 48 percent, across 1,123 likely voters in South Carolina. This poll also found Harrison receiving a positive favorability rating while Graham's was negative.

According to this poll, 48 percent of respondents said they have a favorable view of Harrison, while 35 percent said the opposite. Comparatively, 43 percent of respondents said they have a favorable view of Graham while 51 percent said unfavorable.

The Quinnipiac poll surveyed likely voters in South Carolina from September 23 to September 27 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.9 percentage points.

The Cook Political Report also found that Harrison and his allies have spent far more than Graham and Republicans in advertising on radio, tv and digital. According to the report, Harrison and his allies have spent approximately $68 million, with over $5 million coming from the Senate Majority PAC and over $1 million from The Lincoln Project/Lindsey Must Go PAC.

On the other hand, Graham and Republicans have spent approximately $37 million, with the Senate Leadership Fund spending over $10 million and the Security is Strength PAC spending over $6 million.

Lindsey Graham
Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-SC) questions former FBI Director James Comey, who was appearing remotely, at a hearing of the Senate Judiciary Committee on September 30, 2020 in Washington, DC. Pool/Getty

In an email sent to Newsweek, Harrison's campaign spokesperson Guy King said, "After 25 years in Washington, Lindsey has changed into someone who voters can no longer trust."

"Jaime Harrison's values-driven campaign is exciting voters across the political spectrum, and addressing issues that Lindsey Graham forgot about long ago – like healthcare, broadband internet, and COVID relief for small businesses," the statement said. "Less than a month from election day, this movement is in a prime position to defeat Lindsey Graham and bring hope back to all 46 counties of South Carolina."

Newsweek reached out to Graham's office for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.