South Carolina Political Tidbits
March 22, 2004
Henry McMaster Already Running For Attorney General Again
Hey, did you get the latest mailer from South Carolina Attorney General Henry MAC-Master yet? There's a picture of the former SCGOP Chairman speaking with members of law enforcement with a police car in the background on the oversized postcard. It's even got the official seal of the Office of the Attorney General on it! Wowsers!
McMaster highlights some of his accomplishments in the year or so he has been in office: protecting children from Internet predators, providing justice for helpless senior citizens who are the victims of scams, prosecuting domestic violence offenders with volunteers, and standing up for prayer, values and heritage. That all sounds real good, Mr. Attorney General.
In fact, he even included a personal message for the people of South Carolina:
"Thank you for giving me the honor and privilege of serving as your Attorney General. My singular goal is to make our state the safest place on earth to live, work and raise a family. If I can ever be of assistance to you, please call on me."
You know what's funny? HE DIDN'T PROVIDE HIS TELEPHONE NUMBER!!! Hey Henry, how we supposed to call ya?!
At least it was "Paid for by McMaster for Attorney General," so I guess it is safe to assume he will be running for reelection in 2006 and will wait until Sanford finishes his second term in 2010 before he will run for governor.
RNC Sending Phantom Fundraising Letters?
Is it just me or is the RNC really THAT hard up for cash from Republicans that they need to send out "phantom" fundraising letters?
In just the past few months, I have received several letters from Ed Gillespie asking for the $35.00 membership pledge I supposedly made over the telephone. The only problem is, I never spoke with anyone at the RNC about pledging any money to the RNC!
What makes it even worse is the guilt trip they give you in the letter about NOT giving money to the Republican cause.
I'm a BIG supporter of the Republican Party as evidenced by my articles on Common Voice, GOPUSA and Talon News. But I wish they would come up with a better way of collecting funds.
The current way is VERY INSULTING!
Bush-Cheney Campaign Seeks Grassroots Leaders in South Carolina
I got this really neat mailer from the Bush-Cheney campaign last week. Enclosed was a personalized, autographed picture of President George W. and Laura Bush. I have hung that picture proudly in my cubicle at work and have gotten many compliments from friends and co-workers.
Interestingly, the accompanying letter (which asks for money...SURPRISE!) was originally address "Dear Friend," but that was crossed out and replaced with my first name. Strange to say the least.
The letter itself was kinda nice. It invited me to become a Charter Member of the Bush-Cheney '04 South Carolina Team. The picture of the first couple was "a small token of appreciation" presumably for assisting the campaign in the past.
One noteworthy part of the letter was the desire by the campaign to register 3 million new voters to support "Bush's bold vision for America." That would be quite an accomplishment!
And, unlike the RNC letter, the Bush campaign letter was positive and listed the president's record and goals for a second term, including continuing the war on terrorism, strengthening the economy and creating jobs, cultivate the American dream further through home ownership, health care and retirement option and furthering education through accountability.
This kind of letter actually makes you WANT to give rather than being shamed into giving.
ARE YOU LISTENING TO THIS, RNC?!?!?!
The Source of Campaign Funds For State Sen. John Hawkins
I was surfing around the Internet the other day and came upon a website called FollowtheMoney.org. If you ever wanted to see where the various candidates are getting their money from, this is the web site to provide you information of this sort.
Looking at several names in key races across the state, I could not help but notice an interesting statistic regarding the campaign of Spartanburg Sen. John Hawkins, who is being opposed by businessman Lee Bright in the June Republican primary.
In his 2000 race, which included a general election race against a Democrat, Hawkins received 42% of his campaign funds from people living within his district in Spartanburg County.
However, in his 2004 race, which only consists of a Republican primary race at this time, Hawkins has received a paltry 20% of his campaign funds from his Spartanburg constituents. In fact, he even received a $1,000 contribution from an orthopedic doctor in Lookout Mountain, Tennessee! I wonder what his interest in this race would be?
While Hawkins would like people to believe he has enormous support from within the borders of his Senate district, the fact is that he has not connected with the voters.
Conversely, though, Bright's campaign is vibrant and coming on strong. He has received an astounding 63% of his campaign contributions from people within the Spartanburg senate district! That means he has raised more than three times as much money as a percentage than Hawkins has. Isn't Hawkins the incumbent? :-)
First quarter reporting will be due in the next couple of weeks. How much do you want to bet this trend won't change a bit?! And Hawkins hasn't even gotten his money from the trial lawyers yet who want to keep him voting against tort reform!
Meanwhile, Bright will keep getting those $10 here, $50 there contributions from real voters who are sick and tired of the same old "good ole boy" network Hawkins is a part of!
The Good Ole Boys Have Met Their Match In Gov. Mark Sanford
Speaking of "good ole boys," you knew this was bound to happen much sooner than later. The man who ran on the idea of radical change in Columbia is living up to his word. And that has shaken up the whole "good ole boy" network in the General Assembly. You gotta love it!
Sanford's veto of the pork-laden economic development bill was the right thing to do because that bill would literally bilk South Carolina taxpayers.
AND THIS WAS SUBSEQUENTLY OVERRIDDEN BY REPUBLICAN LAWMAKERS!!!
Tacking on unrelated and expensive amendments to an existing piece of legislation is what Democrats are infamous for. What the heck are Republican doing using the same tactic?!
Here's what Gov. Sanford had to say in response to the ill-advised legislation:
"This politics-as-usual process of tacking on numerous pieces of totally unrelated pork barrel spending to individual bills has raised any number of constitutional concerns," Sanford told the Greenville News. "Beyond the fact that it's an outrage from a taxpayer's perspective, it's a broken way of doing things, and as long as I'm governor, I'm going to fight to fix that process."
YOU GO BOY! While Sanford wasn't my first choice for governor, I am VERY glad he was elected because he is proving that he didn't just say he wanted change just to get elected. I believe he REALLY wants to implement change. That's what is scaring the %&* out of the General Assembly, too!
Of course, those who voted for this fat bill are justifying it by alleging it will create jobs in South Carolina. Oh, so that makes it better.
Let's use that same logic with our own personal budget. Everyone knows you need food to survive or you will die. So let's allocate $35,000 per month on food expenses. Although I only need to spend $100 a week to actually provide food, the other money will OBVIOUSLY be needed because food is such an important part of life that we can't do without. While I may not like everything that is entailed in that $35,000, I can't ignore the fact that I need food.
Does this make any more sense than what state lawmakers did last week? NOPE!
One state senator even went so far as to inquire why Sanford hasn't tried to settle this with the legislature before following through on a lawsuit.
"[The lawsuit] should be a last resort and I hope he'll reconsider," remarked none other than Sen. Hawkins, who has been a huge thorn in the side of Sanford since he was elected governor. "If the goal is to protect taxpayers, the last thing we need to do is to make a bunch of lawyers rich off of this questionable lawsuit."
Hawkins would know about making lawyers rich, wouldn't he? In fact, his opposition to the governor's restructuring plan was so vicious that you would think Hawkins was a Democrat! With friends in the state legislator like this from within his own party, why does Sanford need any enemies from the opposing party?!
One thing is for sure about this: the relationship between Sanford and the General Assembly is not going to get better until one side realizes they are in the wrong.
With Sanford's approval rating soaring well into the upper 60's and the General Assembly is plummeting into the lower 40's, the choice is clear for the voters.
The only question is when will members of the General Assembly wake up and join the revolution being started by Sanford?
If they don't, then I wouldn't be surprised to see a few more of these "good ole boy" legislators heading back to their hometown come election day. That includes a certain attorney who hails from Spartanburg!