Catherine Templeton responds to claims she's a white supremacist

Catherine Templeton (Provided)

South Carolina gubernatorial candidate Catherine Templeton took to social media Wednesday evening to respond to those she says are calling her a white supremacist.

In a video posted at 8:44 p.m. to Twitter, Templeton said the Democratic Party called her a white supremacist on Wednesday.

"Because I support President Trump or because I fight for conservative ideals?" she asked.

The fuss comes as Templeton is set to introduce former White House chief strategist Steven Bannon during an event at The Citadel on Friday. Bannon will speak to members of the military college's Republican Society. It's an event that's been the subject of contention since being made public in late October.

Local activists and community leaders have said Bannon represents hate and division. They plan to exercise the right to rally and peacefully protest.

Templeton argues she will fight for free speech. She's publicly defended the visit of Bannon to the Lowcounty. She described anger over Bannon's visit as hypocritical in a recent radio interview with WTMA's Charlie James.

News of the Bannon visit and her public support of the former Trump adviser is not the first to bubble discussion of race and related issues tied to the woman hoping to be South Carolina's next governor. During an August campaign stop in Pickens County, Templeton said she was proud of the Confederacy.

“Not on my watch,” Templeton said at the meeting, following a question about the removal of Confederate monuments and “anti-southernism.” Templeton argued convicted Emanuel AME Church killer Dylann Roof "took our symbol and turned it into hate."

In the Wednesday evening response to Democrats, Templeton asks if members of the party called her a white supremacist because "they didn't have anything more intelligent to say."

"I'll make you a deal, Democrats, I'll keep fighting for free speech, and you keep trying to sit me down and keep me quiet," she said. "Let's see who wins."

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