Trump gets impeachment revenge on Tom Rice in South Carolina — but Nancy Mace prevails
Rep. Tom Rice, targeted by former President Donald Trump for voting to impeach him after the Capitol riot, was defeated by a Trump-backed challenger in South Carolina Tuesday night while Rep. Nancy Mace, who also incurred Trump's ire for criticizing him over Jan. 6, prevailed, NBC News projects.
Rice’s primary defeat in the state’s 7th Congressional District at the hands of state Rep. Russell Fry marks the first time this election cycle that a pro-impeachment Republican has lost at the ballot box. Rice's loss also delivered Trump his first victory against an incumbent this year. Trump-backed candidates had lost five straight races against incumbents entering Tuesday. (Trump was successful in ousting Rep. David McKinley in West Virginia, but McKinley was up against another incumbent in Rep. Alex Mooney. They were put into the same district as part of redistricting this year.)
But in South Carolina’s 1st Congressional District, a different story unfolded. Mace’s victory over former state Rep. Katie Arrington meant yet another loss for Trump in his effort to exact revenge on Republicans he’s deemed disloyal.
Trump reacted to both projected outcomes on his Truth Social platform. He called Arrington “a long shot” who “ran a great race and way over performed,” adding, “Congrats to Nancy Mace, who should easily be able to defeat her Democrat opponent!” Turning his attention to Fry and Rice, he wrote: “The biggest News of the evening so far is that Russell Fry beat Impeach Master Tom Rice with a Vote of more than 51%, therefore WINNING OUTRIGHT with no need for a run-off.”
Rice surprised many by joining nine other Republicans in voting to impeach Trump after the former president’s supporters stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021. The congressman knew his impeachment vote could cost him re-election, but expressed no regrets in an interview with NBC News last week.