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THE NATION

S.C. GOP Governor Primary in Runoff

Vote: On key privacy issue, N. Dakotans decide banks need OK to sell customers' financial data.

June 12, 2002|From Associated Press

A former congressman and South Carolina's lieutenant governor advanced to a runoff for the state's Republican gubernatorial nomination Tuesday, while North Dakota residents rejected a landmark ballot issue on financial privacy.

Congressional primaries were also decided in Maine and South Carolina, as was the GOP gubernatorial primary in Maine.

Former Rep. Mark Sanford and Lt. Gov. Bob Peeler were the top two vote-getters in a seven-candidate field in South Carolina, but neither received more than half the vote to avoid the June 25 runoff.

The winner will challenge Democratic Gov. Jim Hodges, whose promise of a state lottery to aid education helped him topple a three-term GOP incumbent in 1998. Republicans hope to oust Hodges this fall by tying him to South Carolina's rocky economy, increased unemployment and deep cuts at state agencies.

A runoff was also expected in South Carolina's 3rd Congressional District, where six Republicans battled to succeed GOP Rep. Lindsey O. Graham, who is seeking the seat of retiring Republican Sen. Strom Thurmond.

With about two-thirds of the vote reported, state Rep. Gresham Barrett led the field with 44%. State Rep. Jim Klauber and former prosecutor George Ducworth were neck-and-neck with about 20%. The top two vote-getters will advance to a runoff. The GOP nominee in the House race will face Democrat George Brightharp.

In Maine, Republicans chose businessman Peter Cianchette over educator Jim Libby in the gubernatorial primary.

Cianchette will be the fifth candidate in the crowded race to succeed independent Gov. Angus King, who is barred by law from seeking a third consecutive term.

Uncontested in their Maine gubernatorial primaries were Democratic Rep. John Elias Baldacci, who is leaving the House after four terms, and Jonathan Carter, the Green Party candidate.

In North Dakota, residents decided that banks must get written permission to sell customer information to other businesses.

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