June 4th, 2010
02:29 PM ET
4 years ago

S.C. Republican draws opponent after 'raghead' remark

South Carolina Sen. Jake Knotts is in hot water over a comment he made about Nikki Haley
South Carolina Sen. Jake Knotts is in hot water over a comment he made about Nikki Haley

(CNN) – South Carolina state Sen. Jake Knotts' use of a racial slur Thursday to describe gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley has drawn him a primary challenger.

Former Lexington County GOP chairwoman Katrina Shealy had already been plotting a run against Knotts in 2012, but she told CNN Friday that Knotts' "raghead" remark prompted her to make a very early entry into the race that won't happen for two years.

State senators serve four year terms in the Palmetto State.

The 2012 Republican primary will be a re-match of the 2008 race for the Columbia-area Senate seat, which Shealy lost in a runoff by a 57 to 42 margin.

"After the episode yesterday, I just kind of went ahead and threw it out there," Shealy told CNN. "The political climate out there is so ugly. I am sick and tired of the negative politics. We need to clean house and start over."

Shealy, an insurance underwriter, had the backing of Gov. Mark Sanford and his small government allies in the 2008 race.


Filed under: 2010 • Nikki Haley • South Carolina
soundoff (90 Responses)
  1. Tony

    He should call Limbaugh and they can be tag team partners in the WWE

    June 4, 2010 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  2. The Big J

    What draws the worst aspects that pass for humans into politics? There's plenty of sane people in the south. Unfortunately, none of them care to run for office!

    June 4, 2010 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  3. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    I knew it had to be some fat hillbilly making a racial comment like that. Ms. Haley may have slept around a bit, but she's more of an American(literally) than you Sen. KKKnotts.

    June 4, 2010 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  4. Lumn

    oops – your racist is showing! :)

    June 4, 2010 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  5. Don

    He ought to do what the president did with the police offficer and professor. He can have a rice summit or better yet, blame Bush.

    June 4, 2010 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  6. JoshA

    Republican have got to get these bigots out of there party. Does the Tea Party needs another fat redneck racist?

    June 4, 2010 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  7. maf

    CNN – you make no further reference to the quote in which Knotts slanders the President!!! This man is a glaring example of the racism that exists within the American populace! These kinds of statements take the country back many decades! Add Knotts and Paul to the long list of politicians who can't seem to figure out that those kinds of statements disqualify them from being leaders of the people!!!

    Wake up America!!!

    June 4, 2010 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  8. DT

    Stupid is as Stupid does........South Caroilina can't be hard up for competent, intelligent, representation....can they?

    June 4, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  9. lance corporal

    THIS is who the republicans are – haters! and yeah it's always a joke after the fact, well if that is their sense of humor it is MEAN spirited, this is NOT family values and this is behaviour my grandmother would NOT approve of.... so much for traditional american values!

    June 4, 2010 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  10. Bubba

    So he won't me calling him a baghead? All in fun you know. I'm just joshing around when I say someone ought to poison his creme brulee.

    June 4, 2010 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  11. Rosslaw

    Sen. Knothead either single handedly disproves the concept of intelligent design or proves that God has a sense of humor.

    June 4, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  12. Tilly

    Boehner is more concerned that Paul McCartney should apologize for his remarks about President Bush......(Bush did come off in a dumb way when he used the wrong words, or made up his own words, or couldn't think of the right words.......but Boehner says nothing about this Racist bigot and his remarks......this makes Boehner and the rest of the Republicans that just sit back and say nothing about one of their own (GOOD OLD WHITE BOY) get by with such trash talk.......SC is looking like a State of Radical Racists not to mention how STUPID their politicians are......but all of you SC people must be just as STUPID if you vote these kind of idiots into office.....

    June 4, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  13. Sniffit

    Boss Hogg's long lost illegitimate son hath spoken!

    June 4, 2010 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  14. Bill NY

    I'd rather an upfront racist than some of these smile in your face while they stab you in the back phonies. Right on cracker!

    June 4, 2010 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  15. Steve

    This guy is a complete idiot- I wish voters knew more about people before they vote for them, however, I think there are millions of people in this country who will say "raghead" without thinking about it. Our politicians are held to a higher standard, and for just reasons.

    June 4, 2010 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  16. Bill NY

    He's one of those who will take our country back. hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!

    June 4, 2010 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  17. Wow

    Racist republican moron. And, oh my, that man is UGLY. Like critically UGLY. Oh, my God. And I heard he likes little boys.

    June 4, 2010 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  18. NATHAN WIMBERLY

    Cracker is as cracker does

    June 4, 2010 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  19. Joe Gaines

    Wal-Mart has a big sale on white sheets maybe he should go buy one if he can find one to fit over that big fat redneck head.

    June 4, 2010 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  20. Kevin Cantu

    I think the Republican Party has some serious issues. They can't have one of their own go around and demean someone with in their own ranks and at the same time preach a policy of inclusiveness. Also Why hasn't Sister Sarah said anything about this as of yet???

    June 4, 2010 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  21. Kay

    Wow...where's Boehner demanding an apology on this one?

    June 4, 2010 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  22. Don

    Fat, red neck, old, slob, pile of garbage, meathead, lardhead. WOW. At least the senator is not alone in the world of people who call each other offensive names. I certainly don'tcondone the offensive remarks, but to respond with similar offencive language is astounding. Then go so far as to call the republicans hippocrites. Amazing.

    June 4, 2010 04:06 pm at 4:06 pm |
  23. harvey

    sure, clean house in South Carolina – you haven't cleaned house since the 1800s. The state that produced Strom Thurmond, Joe Wilson, Mark Sanford, Jim DeMint, and John C. Calhoun: home of states' rights, nullification of federal laws, limited government, and slavery. and don't forget intelligent design, brought to you by Bob Jones University in, where else, Greenville SC. sure sounds like the Tea Party credo to me. clean house? what's the difference between one white-hooded individual and another?

    June 4, 2010 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  24. Bob of Lompoc

    SC Senator Jake Knotts is the walking, talking, living image of the stereotypical Southern White Male. Fifty years ago his ilk was a Democrat. Come the Civil Rights Bill of 1964 people such as he just changed political parties and continued their past behavior. Now he is a Republican. Same type of person – just changed the Party name. Does anyone, observing this person, not now understand that there is something wrong with our politcal system? Who is to blame? Good Ole Boy Jake, or the Republican Party? I don't know the answer. I just want these people to leave my Nation. Palin was right, in a perverted sort of way, when she said Demoicrtas are not real Americans – we ARE different – she just hung the "Real Americans" label on the wrong people. Jake and Bob (me) don't belong in the same Nation.

    June 4, 2010 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  25. Remember the Alamo

    Rid ourselves of all incumbents especially the Democrats. Their immoral and lack education. People as such as OBAMA never should have been allowed close to the White House must less be in it. He still has not proven he is elgible to be there. The when the shootings happened at Ft. hood TX Bush came to visit the troops in the Hospital that day. Obama sent word once he heard it and ordered him to leave. WHAT A OUTRAGE. UT YET HE STILL DIDN'T COME TO VISIT THE TROOPS IN THE HOSPITAL. HE IS A SCOURGE TO THE MILITARY AND THIS NATION'S HONOR.

    June 4, 2010 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
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