- Associated Press - Saturday, April 29, 2017

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Political strategist Trav Robertson is the new leader of the South Carolina Democratic Party.

Media outlets report Robertson was elected chairman at the party’s convention Saturday with 66 percent of delegates’ votes. Pawleys Island activist Susan Smith received 28 percent.

The 42-year-old chairman said Democrats can build the party “into a force to be reckoned with” in every election cycle. Republicans control the Legislature and occupy every statewide office.

Robertson was spokesman and campaign manager for longtime former state Treasurer Grady Patterson.

The more than 20 other campaigns he’s led include Sen. Vincent Sheheen’s failed bid for governor in 2010. He then worked as director of the Oklahoma Democratic Party from 2011 to 2015.

Outgoing chairman Jaime Harrison is leaving to be an associate chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

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