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October 25, 2006 | South Carolina Headlines


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GOP Secretary Of State Candidates Fleecing Taxpayers
Jimmy Moore
May 14, 2002

(Commonviews 2002 is a series of articles examining the most important issues in South Carolina's 2002 statewide GOP primary races. Click here to find out more about the purpose of Commonviews 2002 and how to submit your own suggestions for future topics of discussion.)

In the South Carolina Secretary of State's race in 2002, two Republican candidates are involved in what could be described as an unethical practice unbecoming of a potential state official.

Here's what I am talking about:

How do locally elected public officials running for statewide office travel all over the state while collecting local county taxpayer paychecks?

Yet, that is exactly what Spartanburg County Clerk Of Court Mark Hammond and Horry County Auditor Lois Eargle have been doing this year! Both have used county tax dollars, public facilities, county phones, employees and time to campaign for an office that has nothing to do with their county duties.

I have it on good authority that Hammond and Eargle have on numerous occasions this year conducted fundraising calls from local government offices, stored campaign materials on county property and spent official county time in other counties around the state.

It is utterly reprehensible how anyone who calls himself a fiscal conservative could overtly fleece the local taxpayers who pay his salary to do a job he is in fact not doing!

As local government officials, both Hammond and Eargle should spend their time in the positions they were elected to do. If a local official is truly interested in running for statewide office, then the responsible thing to do is to step down and let someone else do the job so he can campaign!

Ed McMullen, the leading GOP candidate for Secretary of State, VOLUNTARILY resigned his position as President of the South Carolina Policy Council to run for office. Although he did not have to do this, he chose to be an example of doing the right thing.

Unfortunately, neither of his opponents followed suit.

What do YOU think?

Are Mark Hammond and Lois Eargle fleecing local taxpayers by campaiging around the South Carolina for Secretary of State?

Do you think it is acceptable for locally elected public officials to earn a paycheck for their county job while running for statewide office?

Do you agree with McMullen's decision to leave the Policy Council to run for Secretary of State?

Click on the "Comment On This Article" button below to discuss this issue and tell us what YOU think.

Previous Articles In the Commonviews 2002 Series:
Does Condon Blitz Prove Strength Or Weakness?
Not All Property Tax Plans Are the Same 
Candidate Debates Show Individuality
A Closer Analysis of GOP Gubernatorial Poll
Campaign Sign Contraband & Shenanigans
Ozmint-A Prosecutor Or Politician?
McMullen Missing Experience?
Commonviews 2002 Series Coming to Commonvoice.com

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