On the heals of the first of three scheduled GOP debates in South Carolina, former Mass. Governor Mitt Romney has gained another endorsement from a S.C. politician.
State Rep. Phyllis Henderson, R-Greenville and Sen. Jim DeMint's 1998 campaign manager, announced her support for Romney earlier today.
“Mitt Romney is the only Republican candidate who has a proven business record and is the conservative leader we need to get our economy turned around and start creating jobs," Henderson said in a statement released by the Romney campaign.
"He has a long record of keeping taxes low, creating jobs, cutting spending, and reducing burdensome regulations on small businesses."
Romney visited S.C. for the fourth time in six months last week, making two stops here in the Upstate. On Friday he spent the afternoon talking to veterans at Mutt's Barbecue in Mauldin in recognition of Veterans Day. On Saturday Romney joined the eight other candidates at Wofford College in Spartanburg for the first nationally televised GOP debate.
Today, he is in Columbia, visiting with a local business.
Henderson's endorsement is not the first for Romney here in the state. In September, state Treasurer Curtis Loftis not only voiced support for Romney but joined his team as state chair for the campaign.
It remains to be seen whether Romney will ultimately win the support of the people in South Carolina despite a consistent lead in state polls but some S.C. insiders say a focused campaign and consistent message could be all it takes as other campaigns are faced with self-destructive obstacles.
In the meantime, a few added state endorsements can't hurt either.
"I am honored to have Phyllis’ support," Romney said in a statement. "She is a conservative voice in Columbia. Her support and leadership mean a great deal to me and I’m looking forward to having her be part of my campaign."
The South Carolina state primary will be held on Jan. 21.