Graham gets challenger in SC GOP primary

Nancy Mace, a small business owner and the first female graduate of The Citadel, will challenge Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) in next year's South Carolina Republican primary. 

Mace announced her campaign on Saturday at a GOP breakfast in Goose Creek, S.C.

In her speech, she criticized the size of the federal government and said Washington politicians are "out of touch." 

"Washington thinks it knows better than the people," she said. "The federal government has worked its way into nearly every corner of our lives, trying to solve every problem for us. And yet, we are still not better off for it.”

She joins businessman Richard Cash in challenging the two-term senator for the GOP nomination. Republican State Sen. Lee Bright has also said he will run.

Graham has come under criticism from members of his own party for centrist positions on immigration and other issues. He has, however, taken a hard line on gun control and national security issues.  

“Lindsey Graham is a strong fiscal, social, and national security conservative with the record to back it up," Tate Zeigler, a Graham campaign spokesman, said in a statement. "Whether it’s repealing and replacing Obamacare, working to ensure the Port of Charleston is deepened, standing up for the unborn, protecting the second amendment, or ensuring we have a strong military, Senator Graham works tirelessly for the people of South Carolina."

—Updated at 2:48 p.m.