Second gentleman speaks in Rock Hill on eve of Democratic primary

ROCK HILL, S.C. — Second gentleman Doug Emhoff spoke in Rock Hill Friday on the eve of the first Democratic primary in the nation.

Channel 9′s Tina Terry was in the room at Kounter as he energized local Democratic voters.

Ermhoff, who is the husband of Vice President Kamala Harris, went to South Carolina, which indicated the importance of Saturday’s primary.

South Carolina is a red state and York County is a red county, but the state is rich in Black voters. Historically, they make up a significant percentage of Democratic voters in the nation.

Experts say Saturday’s primary will be a good gauge of Black support for President Joe Biden. Last month, Rep. Jim Clyburn, of South Carolina, said he had some concerns about Biden’s standing with Black voters.

“In 2020, if it were not for South Carolina and Jim Clyburn’s endorsement of Joe Biden, Joe Biden would not be president right now,” said Scott Huffmon, a political scientist at Winthrop University.

Ermhoff was in South Carolina to energize Black voters.

“We are stunningly important for the Democratic Party because Iowa is lily-white, New Hampshire is lily-white,” Huffmon said. “Come to South Carolina and it’s the first test of African American support and African American enthusiasm.”

On Friday, Emhoff touted Biden’s accomplishments, including student loan debt relief, lowering prescription costs, and help for small businesses. He also encouraged a strong turnout for President Biden on Saturday.

“Make sure you go out and vote,” he said. “Let’s show the world we need Joe Biden and Kamala Harris to continue for another four years.”

Huffmon said enthusiasm is what Biden needs especially if he faces off against former President Donald Trump in the fall.

“Trump supporters are driven, very driven,” Huffmon said. “That means Democrats that show up need to have enthusiasm to drive them.”

Former Gov. Nikki Haley also made a campaign stop in Lancaster County on Friday night, no doubt trying to win over independent voters.

Haley said she is the only Republican who can beat Biden.

“Don’t complain about the General Election if you don’t play in this primary,” said said at Indian Land High School. “It matters.”

“Nikki is counting on independents who haven’t voted in the Democratic Primary to show up to the Republican Primary and give her a boost,” Huffmon said.

Emhoff made a last-minute appearance in Charlotte to talk to Mecklenburg County voters.

(WATCH BELOW: SC Republicans speculate on how Nikki Haley will do in next month’s primary)