Sheri Few is a self-described “grassroots mom” who understands how the educational deck in our public school system is stacked against conservative principles. Heavily skewed political donations to Democrats from teachers unions is one key indicator that Few discusses, but there’s also curricula standards and anecdotal evidence of public school bias in favor of Leftist ideas.
Few’s passion for reforming education is a big part of why she’s running for Congress to replace Mick Mulvaney, a former South Carolina congressman from the 5th District who left his position to become director of the Office of Management and Budget for President Trump.
“It’s always important to seek the truth and to do your own independent research and find good sources that are reliable because I think there’s so much misinformation, especially through education,” Few said in an interview. “It’s difficult to overcome the propaganda if you’re not intent on becoming a truth seeker. And I think the truth always prevails.”
Few, director of South Carolina Parents Involved in Education, an education advocacy organization, praised Trump’s campaign call to end Common Core education standards–an issue she knows well as she fought against them in South Carolina.
“I’m often accused of being anti-public education,” Few said. “I’m not. I believe there are good teachers that do a very good job. But there are many, many that are just there for a paycheck, which is the case for many government agencies. Teachers should be promoted according to merit. I don’t agree with tenure.”
Few pointed to New York City schools as particularly lacking in accountability due to teachers’ unions, which push for job protection at all costs, even a complete lack of improvement or results.
“I’m the only candidate that talks about education at all,” Few said. “What I like to tell the taxpayers is they are all stakeholders in education, whether they have kids in public schools or not. First of all, their tax dollars are funding it, a $70 billion Education Department …. I want to lead on education. I think there’s a lot of areas that have been neglected by conservatives. I want to educate my colleagues on how it is fundamental to all other issues … There are very few, if any, and the national experts I have spoken with agree, congressmen that understand the problems with education.”
Fifteen candidates filed in this race in a heavily Republican district with a 2016 presidential margin of Trump at 57 percent, Hillary Clinton at 39 percent. Few is running against three Democrats, seven Republicans, and five third-party candidates. Primary elections will be held on May 2, with primary runoffs scheduled for May 16. Few has been married to her husband, Marty, for 32 years, is the mother of four sons and has one granddaughter.
“I’m fortunate that all my kids are grown,” Few said. “After all the kids are raised is a good time to run.”
As small business owners, Few and her husband run a pool installation company, which gives her firsthand experiences that she shares on the campaign trail about how taxes and regulations and insurance mandates hurt their ability to create jobs.
“Small businesses are the job creators in America, not the government,” Few said. “If the government doesn’t stop squashing small business, we’ll kill the jobs.”
Few’s daughter-in-law, April, is her campaign manager. Few points out that April is a millennial, one of the few who has been able to hear past the siren song of “free” goodies.
“Statistically is that the millennial generation was for Bernie Sanders,” Few said. “And that is by design because young people have been indoctrinated and even brainwashed by a very Leftist agenda.”
Few acknowledges she is at a fundraising disadvantage to her primary opponents, many of whom are well-heeled businessmen. She argues that she is the most conservative of the bunch and therefore she is best ideological replacement for Mulvaney.
“I think it’s interesting that I’m the woman in the race, and I’m the one showing the courage in the race,” Few said. “I have been characterized as standing out. I’ve been characterized as being a fighter even by one of my opponents, in a positive way. I think I’ve shown more courage and more ability to stand up on different issues. I’ve really dominated in debates because I really go after these guys in debates on their records and for posing as something as they’re not. These guys are weak, they cave and have folded to political correctness, and they’re not even willing to call each other out … We could lose this very conservative congressional seat to a moderate or even a Democrat if they don’t get out and vote.”
Few said her strategy the next weeks is to blanket radio and television airwaves through advertising. A passionate constitutionalist, Few is unapologetic for America’s place of leadership in the world.
“Read and know and learn the U.S. Constitution, the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights,” she said. “It’s the foundation of our constitutional republic, and it is that foundation that made us the wealthiest country in the world and the most desirable place in the world to live.”
Carrie Sheffield is the founder of Bold. She is passionate about storytelling to empower and connect others. A founding POLITICO reporter, Carrie contributed on political economy at Forbes and wrote editorials for The Washington Times. After earning a master’s in public policy from Harvard University, she managed credit risk at Goldman Sachs and researched for Edward Conard, Bain Capital founding partner and American Enterprise Institute scholar. She earned a B.A. in communications at Brigham Young University and completed a Fulbright fellowship in Berlin.