BUFFALO — Conservative reform that includes term limits for members of Congress and protecting the First Amendment rights of Americans is the goal of a Prosperity businessman who is running for the Republican nomination for US House of Representatives District 5 seat.
In a statement released Friday afternoon, Chad Connelly announced that he will run in the special election as a Republican candidate for U.S. Congress in the state’s 5th District. A special election will be held to fill the seat left vacant as a result of Rep. Mick Mulvaney’s being confirmed by the United States Senate to be the next Director of the White House’s Office of Management and Budget.
“Washington is broken and I want to do my part to try and fix it,” Connelly said. “As such, I will lead a fight for term limits in the US Congress pledging to lead by example and serving no more than 12 years. I am a conservative that believes in small government. If elected, I will fight for American families by working to help create a pro business environment encouraging more new jobs, a stronger military and less taxes.”
If elected, the press release states Connelly will sponsor new legislation to limit members of the House to no more than six terms (12 years) and members of the Senate to no more than two terms (12 years).
“I traveled all over this country this past year and folks everywhere are disgusted with the poisonous political games being played on Capitol Hill,” Connelly said. “Americans have simply lost faith in Congress as an institution. I am convinced the only way we are going to fix this mess is to begin to enact real term limits.
“If we want better jobs and a safer homeland, we must first make way for new voices,” he said “We need more citizen legislators and less career politicians. Our founding fathers framed this Republic as a government of the people, by the people and for all the people under God.”
During a lunchtime visit to Midway BBQ in Buffalo Friday afternoon that saw him introducing himself to diners and meeting with local Republican officials, Connelly discussed further his ideas for conservative reform that he said is sorely needed in Washington, DC.
“I’ve traveled to 40 states and spoken with people of every denomination and ethnicity and listened to them and they are all sick and tired of what’s happening in Washington,” Connelly said. “The public is demanding conservative reform and that’s why I’m running on term limits and returning government to citizen legislators who will serve a short period of time and then leave as the Founders envisioned. When you have someone who has been there 30 or 40 years they become beholden to special interests and lobbyists and so there can be no reform. That’s why we need term limits and a natural turnover in Congress because you don’t get fundamental change without them.”
Connelly said that while he would be willing to support any legislation that limits the terms of the members of Congress, he favors limiting House members to six terms or 12 years and member of the Senate to two terms of 12 years. He favors this because of its simplicity and straightforwardness.
While term limits are an important part of the conservative reform he feels is needed, Connelly said it is not the only issue that needs addressing. He said he has seen this need as a businessman, a veteran, and a Christian seeing what been done to small businesses, to the military, and to the First Amendment freedoms including the Freedom of Religion and Freedom of Speech.
“We’ve been penalizing small business, I’m a businessman,” Connelly said. “We’ve seen the deconstructing if our military, I’m a veteran. We’ve also seen the unprecedented attacks on the first freedom and as a Christian that offends me. The idea of religious liberty has been under assault and that offends me.”
Connelly said that if elected he will work to end the penalizing of small businesses, rebuild the military, and restore and defend the First Amendment freedoms of all Americans.
While he previously made an unsuccessful bid for a State Senate seat in 2003, Connelly has otherwise never run for public office, but has remained involved in politics and urged others to get involved. He said his decision to run was influenced by those he has encouraged to get involved in the political process urging him to do so as well by seeking public office.
“I’ve been challenging people to get involved and people have been challenging me to get involved and use my God-given talents and passion to make a difference,” Connelly said.
Connelly was born and raised in Prosperity, South Carolina. He graduated from Clemson University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering. Connelly then joined the United States Army and SC National Guard where he became a Tank Commander and Platoon Leader of SC’s 2/263 Armored in Gaffney and York. He then worked in the private sector where he became the youngest senior manager for PSI, a national engineering firm.
While at PSI Connelly managed over 100 employees in eight separate locations. After 8 years Connelly decided to start his own small business. His firm helped entrepreneurs begin and grow their own small businesses leading to a coaching, speaking and consulting career.
Connelly also remained active in conservative causes. He was elected and also re-elected as Chairman of the SC Republican Party. RNC Chairman Reince Priebus then tapped Connelly to serve as the RNC’s first-ever National Director of Faith Engagement. He has since traveled to 40 states and spoken to over 80,000 pastors and faith leaders about the importance of getting more involved in the political process.
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.