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Columbia, SC — Planned Parenthood Votes! South Atlantic (PPVSAT) congratulates endorsed candidates James Smith and Annie McDaniel on their primary victories last night. McDaniel’s victory in HD 41, along with Smith’s decisive statewide victory to secure the Democratic nomination for governor, signals that South Carolina voters are deeply opposed to politicians attacking women’s access to their full range of reproductive healthcare.

Annie McDaniel defeated Democrat incumbent MaryGail Douglas, who was first elected to the House in 2012. Douglas has consistently voted for unnecessary restrictions on safe and legal abortion. This year she solidified her anti-women’s health political agenda when she supported “defunding” Planned Parenthood by denying Medicaid patients the ability to choose their trusted healthcare provider.

PPVSAT supported both McDaniel and Smith with a maximum financial contribution in their primary election.

“The political arm of Planned Parenthood will take on any candidate who votes against women’s health, regardless of party affiliation. Last night’s defeat of incumbent Representative Douglas proves that.” said Vicki Ringer, South Carolina Director of Public Affairs. “Our top concern has always been to protect our patient’s access to the full range of care Planned Parenthood provides. Our endorsed candidates will ensure that personal pregnancy decisions remain between a woman and her doctor without political influence.”

PPVSAT publicized their endorsements through public events, email and heavy digital and social media to let South Carolina voters know who on the ballot would stand up for their health and rights.  

PPVSAT endorsement sends a strong signal to pro-women’s health voters that these candidates can be counted on to promote access to basic reproductive health care such as birth control, lifesaving cancer screenings and family planning in the state legislature, and that they support a woman’s right to make her own deeply personal pregnancy decisions, no matter what.