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Democratic challenger outraises Graham in South Carolina Senate race

Democratic challenger outraises Graham in South Carolina Senate race
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Democratic Senate candidate Jaime Harrison outpaced Republican Sen. Lindsey GrahamLindsey Olin GrahamBiden: Trump attending inauguration is 'of consequence' to the country The Memo: Harris moves signal broad role as VP Former US attorney asks for probe of allegations Graham pressured Georgia official MORE (S.C.) in fundraising during the first three months of 2020, marking the first time the Democrat has done so this election cycle. 

Harrison raised more than $7.3 million in the first quarter of the year, dwarfing the $3.5 million he raised in the fourth quarter of 2019 and setting a new South Carolina record for fundraising in a three-month period, his campaign said. 

Graham's campaign also surpassed previous fundraising highs and raised $5.6 million, bringing the senator's total cash on hand to $12.8 million. The total represents the most a state or federal candidate has ever raised in South Carolina history, his campaign said. Harrison has a little more than $8 million on hand. 

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"We’re so grateful for this outpouring of support from everyday people who are looking for leadership that puts them first," Guy King, a Harrison campaign spokesman, said.
 
Graham's campaign said that the senator enjoyed record fundraising numbers despite canceling all fundraising events during the Senate impeachment trial and being forced to suspend in-person operations once President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says GOP senators have called to congratulate him Biden: Trump attending inauguration is 'of consequence' to the country Biden says family will avoid business conflicts MORE declared a national state of emergency because of the coronavirus pandemic. 
 

“It’s truly humbling to see the tremendous support and momentum continue to grow for Senator Graham,” Graham's campaign manager, Scott Farmer, said in a statement.  “Even after canceling numerous events and suspending our fundraising efforts for part of the quarter, Senator Graham still shattered personal and state fundraising records."

Despite Harrison's impressive fundraising hauls, the former South Carolina Democratic Party chairman still faces an uncertain path to victory against Graham, a vocal ally of Trump. The Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan elections forecaster, rates the race as solid Republican. Trump also won South Carolina in 2016 by 14 points. 

In addition, the coronavirus pandemic has indefinitely canceled in-person campaigning. Harrison, like many other candidates, announced last month that he would shift to virtual gatherings.