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Election 2012: Sheriff tops $70,000 in re-election campaign

Lane Cribb has raised over $70,000 in his campaign for a sixth term as Georgetown County Sheriff, according to reports filed with the S.C. Ethics Commission. He has over $22,000 on hand to face a possible challenge in November from a petition candidate.

Through June 1, Cribb raised $64,626. As of July 10, he had added another $7,450.

Cribb spent $64,371 to win the Republican Party nomination. He received 4,081 votes to 1,121 for his challenger, Doug Dishong, a former county deputy who now works for the Horry County Police Department.

Dishong raised $8,215, according to his Ethics Commission filing. He spent all but $100, with campaign signs accounting for the largest portion of his expenses.

Cribb’s campaign raised 25 percent more for the GOP primary than it did in 2008, when he also faced a challenge for the nomination. “You can’t ever take it easy,” Cribb said. “You’re better off in the water swimming than lying on the shore taking it easy.”

He spent $4,300 to run ads on Time Warner Cable, and another $4,200 to produce those ads in the run-up to the June primary. He spent $2,600 on newspaper ads and $5,800 for direct-mail pieces.

He also relied on campaign signs. Four members of the sheriff’s office were paid a total of about $900 for mileage reimbursements. “They were putting up signs,” Cribb said, adding that they used their personal vehicles and did the work on their own time. Cribb’s secretary, Sabrina Player, also got $1,000, which he said was for keeping up with the campaign finances. That was also on her own time, he said.

Darryel Carr, a former deputy, filed petitions this week to get on the November ballot. He originally filed to run as a Democrat, but was ruled ineligible because he didn’t file his statement of candidacy at the same time as his economic interest statement. That rule snagged hundreds of candidates around the state this year.

Carr has funded his campaign himself, contributing $2,750. His biggest expense was the $2,485 filing fee. He also spent money on supplies for his petition drive, according to campaign filings.

Among the candidates ruled ineligible this year was Jerod Ownbey, who filed as a Democrat in state House District 108. He decided not to run as a petition candidate.

That left Stephen Goldfinch of Murrells Inlet, a Republican, as the lone candidate. He raised $35,913 for the campaign. He spent all but $1,206, according to the Ethics Commission report. His biggest expense was to Swatzel Strategies, the consulting firm run by Tom Swatzel, the former county GOP chairman.

Of the $10,147 Goldfinch spent in the quarter ending June 30, $8,908 went to Swatzel Strategies for consulting and materials.

Being unopposed was no bar to fundraising for state Sen. Ray Cleary, either. He has raised $149,963 for the campaign. He was unopposed in the Republican primary and no Democrat filed for the seat.

Cleary raised $13,929 in the second quarter this year. He spent $22,409, including $17,304 for television ads.

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