As the Nov. 21 runoff election draws near, Myrtle Beach mayoral candidate Brenda Bethune and incumbent John Rhodes are in the final push but they don’t have the financial resources that they did in the weeks before the election last week.
Filings submitted to the South Carolina Ethics Commission show Bethune raised close to $64,500 and Rhodes brought in $62,800.
Now, Rhodes said that he has much less money than the nearly $50,000 originally listed.
Rhodes would not say the exact amount he has in the bank going up to the runoff stating, “That’s between me and the gate post. You’ll find out in January.” The next campaign finance filing deadline is in January.
“It’s tough to raise money now,” he said. “I don’t have some of the sources my opponent has and when you’re behind it’s even worse.”
Bethune said that she has just over $4,700 on hand as she heads into the runoff. She spent just over $53,000 of her $64,500 on campaign items such as signs and advertisements.
At the beginning of the filing period Rhodes had just over $28,000. Of the $62,800 in contributions he spent just over $50,000.
As of Nov. 6 Rhodes had received 123 contributions, the filing shows. Of those filings, three came from beach and surf shops and two came from vape shops.
The report shows that three donations came from out of state, one from Ohio and two from Georgia. Of the two from Georgia one was a club manager and the other was listed as a housewife. The Ohio donation did not list an occupation.
Rhodes spent most of his money on campaign advertising. He spent just over $700 throughout his campaign for security. The highest dollar amount he spent was $10,000 once for a 2017 mayor campaign consultant and a second $10,000 bill for a campaign manager. Both are based out of Atlanta, Georgia.
“Right now I need to get votes more than I need money,” Bethune said. “It’s a necessary evil I will be attacking on the 22nd,” referring to the day after the runoff election.
Bethune had 76 donors listed. Two out-of-state donors were listed, one from Wilmington, N.C. and a retiree from Florida.
Burroughs and Chapin donated $1,000 to both candidates. Anthony Chestnut, listed as a real estate agent based out of Conway, donated $1,000 to Rhodes and $500 to Bethune.
Candidates must file a final report by Jan. 10, which will cover expenses between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31.
On Nov. 7 Rhodes and Bethune faced mayoral candidates Ed Carey, C.D. Rozsa and former Myrtle Beach Mayor Mark McBride. Carey was the third runner up followed by McBride and then Rozsa.