Runoff election Tuesday for Myrtle Beach mayoral seat

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – Voters in Myrtle Beach will head to the polls on Tuesday to elect a new mayor in a runoff between businesswoman Brenda Bethune and incumbent Mayor John Rhodes.

Two weeks ago, 5,791 city residents showed up at the polls on Election Day to cast their votes. Bethune received 39% of the vote, while Rhodes received 30%. Because the winning candidate must have 50% plus one, of the majority vote, a runoff election date was set.

Brenda Bethune says a vote for her, is a vote for change in Myrtle Beach.

“Change to me means looking at what we have to offer. Are we presenting ourselves as the family-friendly beach that we say we are? Are we doing enough for our residents? Are we doing enough to attract visitors?” she questions.

Incumbent Mayor John Rhodes is running for his fourth term in the mayoral seat, and he says he wants to continue what he’s started to draw businesses to the Grand Strand and keep the city safe.

“The plan that I have is working. The plan that [Myrtle Beach Police] Chief Prock has is working. The plan that city council has is working. We do not need to disrupt this flow. We need to move forward,” Rhodes suggests.

Rhodes says his track record speaks for itself and is a blueprint for what voters can expect if he’s re-elected.

“We’re looking at a tremendous increase in the economy now. Let’s look at the TDF that I’ve created that gave our residents the largest tax reduction on their properties in the history of our state,” says Rhodes.

Bethune says building unity among city leaders is a priority.

“Change is hard for everyone. That’s going to be difficult for the remaining council members that have been seated there for so long. Building relationships is going to be key in the first few months, in order for us to really get things accomplished,” explains Bethune.

As his final message to voters, Rhodes says, “I hope you choose me again to be your leader. Your mayor. Your ambassador. The person that represents you for another 4 years.”

Bethune urges, “I hope that the voters know that I’m sincere and that I truly will be a public servant that listens to the community.”

The polls are open from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Tuesday. You can vote in the runoff, even if you didn’t vote in the first election.