South Carolina Democrat Resigns After Devastating Election Results

South Carolina Senate minority leader Nikki Setzler (D.) / Facebook
November 10, 2020

South Carolina state senate minority leader Nikki Setzler (D.) announced Tuesday that he will step down from his role after Democrats lost three seats in the chamber last week.

Setzler, who has led Democrats in the South Carolina Senate since 2012, won reelection to his seat last week but will not seek another term as minority leader. Although Democratic strategists had hoped they could flip four Republican-held seats, Republicans expanded their lead.

Republicans now hold 30 of the 46 Senate seats.

Democratic caucus political adviser Antjuan Seawright told the Post and Courier that Setzler will "remain committed to being a bipartisan consensus builder in the Senate and working on behalf of his constituents and the people of South Carolina."

"Senator Setzler is also dedicated to fostering a new generation of leadership within the caucus, and will offer his continued counsel and guidance moving forward," Seawright said.

Republicans who ran for federal office outperformed national polling in last week's election. State races followed suit. Republicans successfully defended every state house and chamber majority they held going into the election and flipped both chambers of New Hampshire's state legislature.

Republicans' electoral success could create a long-lasting problem for Democrats, as Republican-led state governments across the country will now have the upper hand in redistricting following the 2020 census.