At last night’s debate, put on by the Democratic base of the NAACP, Mayor Rhodes came out like a street fighter looking for a place to insert the knife.
Mr. Rhodes was clearly on his home turf. His largest base of supporters are Matthew Brittain of Brittain Resort Hotels and Steve Chapman of the Grand Strand Business Alliance. Both are well known for being among the most powerful democrats in the state of S.C.
The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce sponsored the event. The event was packed with local incumbents who came to show strong support for the mayor. Included in that group were Mark Lazarus, Horry County Council Chairman and Mary Jeffcoat, a leading liberal voice on Myrtle Beach City Council.
ENTIRE MAYORAL DEBATE
LIES AND MISREPRESNTATIONS
After the debate ended, a local resident sent us the picture of Mayor Rhodes above.
In fact checking Mayor Rhodes, MyrtleBeachSC.com was able to determine:
1. Mayor Rhodes insinuated challenger Ed Carey was the owner of Market Common and had defaulted on the property buying it back at 20 cents on the dollar.
On the Pinocchio scale: MyrtleBeachSC.com rates this as a 5. Candidate Carey lead the team that built Market Common. He was never an owner in any way of Market Common.
2. When questioned by Carey about Savannah’s playground, and his promise that tax funds would never be used, Mayor Rhodes side stepped the issue. He made an emotional play on the rights of children. MyrtleBeachSC.com fact checked Mr. Rhodes previous statements. Before work began on Savannah’s playground, Mayor Rhodes did promise the residents of Market Common that no tax payer monies would ever be used on building the playground. Over $350,000 in tax monies was used.
On the Pinnocio scale: MyrtleBeachSC.com rates this a 5.
3. Mayor Rhodes also questioned the FBI reports that state Myrtle Beach leads the nation in crime for a city of its size. He then compared Myrtle Beach to Chicago and New York.
MyrtleBeachSC.com rates these statements as a 5 also. Myrtle Beach should be compared to the city of North Myrtle Beach. The city of North Myrtle Beach does not make the tops of these FBI associated lists of cities having high crime, yet NMB does the same in tourist numbers annually as does Myrtle Beach.
Throughout his tenure the mayor has been caught in many misrepresentations.
KEY EXAMPLES: Mayor Rhodes described the city’s Superblock purchases as “all willing sellers, all willing buyers.” He stated in 2016 that “the Chinese would invest $100 million in 60 days.” Those investments never happened. He continually states that Myrtle Beach is not a violent city. He also states, as he did last night, that the key problem in Myrtle Beach is non traditional news reporting, stating that Bubba Hinson should have put down his camera and worked the streets during a violent shoot out.
A MOCKING SPIRIT
Mayor Rhodes brought a mocking spirit to the debate last night. That Spirit has been consistent in the way incumbents have run this city, demeaning opponents.
So as to change the news cycle away from a debate on serious issues, just yesterday,
MOCKING SPIRIT EXAMPLED BY LEADERS OF MYRTLE BEACH
This highly belittling and mocking video was put up and sponsored by a competitor’s or some unknown PAC’s campaign. Mr. McBride responded by blaming the Bethune camp without producing hard facts to prove those allegations.
We spoke to the Bethune campaign. The Bethune Campaign posted and stated to us:
I have absolutely no motive to spend an ounce of campaign effort on trashing Mr. McBride on social media, or in any other venue. I have run a clean, positive campaign that I am proud of. I stand behind everything that I, and everyone involved in my campaign, has said during this campaign.
TRANSFORMING OUR CITY
Many residents have told MyrtleBeachSC.com, that an arrogant mocking Spirit continues to keep Myrtle Beach under its thumb.
Oftentimes, we have witnessed good people succumb to responding to this Spirit, putting the spotlight on themselves rather than those who practice such evil.
Mayor Rhodes, Myrtle Beach Area Chamber members, and the incumbents continue to direct the issues towards small and insignificant battles. They have governed much the same, mocking anyone who challenges their leadership.
Recent polls indicate McBride and Bethune held a significant lead last week. MyrtleBeachSC.com was able to see and verify those polls.
As the November 7th. election date approaches, Mr. Rhodes will not be able to grow his voter base. His only hopes of winning are to suppress the votes of Carey, Bethune and McBride.
Perhaps true transformation will begin to happen when our resident base rises above our current leadership, which includes the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber. Mr. Dean is chief among those who mock challengers of the current system.