Republican Teddy Turner, son of media mogul Ted Turner, appears to be the first candidate on the air in the special election to fill the House seat vacated by Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., having released a 30-second biographical ad on Friday.
The ad is running on broadcast and cable television as part of a $60,000, ten-day ad buy, according to Politico.
The opening ad is an important one for Turner, whose family members are known liberals in the state. The ad twice refers to Turner as a "conservative" and pushes his "more freedom, less government" message. Getting up on television so early in the campaign -- the ad hit the airwaves the same day filing for the seat opened -- could also be a big boost for a relatively unknown candidate in a crowded field.
More than half a dozen candidates have already declared their intentions to enter the race for South Carolina's 1st District on the Republican side, including former Gov. Mark Sanford, state Sen. Larry Grooms and state Rep. Chip Limehouse. Meanwhile, comedian Stephen Colbert's sister has filed to run as a Democrat and could be a formidable opponent in a general election match, thanks to her brother's celebrity.
Turner was on early lists of potentially formidable Republican candidates because of his family's wealth, but the New Republic reported last week that his campaign would not be self-financed. But Turner has access to many wealthy, local donors through his father, who has already given the maximum contribution to his campaign, according to the New Republic report. Whether those donors are willing to back the family's only conservative Republican remains a big unanswered question for Turner's campaign.
The Republican primary is slated for March 19, with the general election scheduled for May 7.