It’s Time for Action

May 29, 2014

Inside Insight

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ariail time for action

THE PROBLEM IS CLOSER THAN YOU THINK

South Carolinians are serious about changing Washington. All over the state anger toward DC politicians is at a boiling point, and so is the frustration at our lack of ability to have any influence on them.

But there’s an obvious reason we can’t do much about DC – we only have control over seven U.S. Representatives and two U.S. Senators, and we can each cast exactly one vote for the president. So what can we do to restore our freedom?  We can get laser-focused on solving the crisis in our own state.

South Carolina is in a situation so dire that communicating the scope of the crisis becomes harder even as its reality becomes more obvious. It sounds pretty dramatic to say that one politician has control of most of state government and can set himself above the law. It sounds far-fetched to claim that one judge essentially eradicated the rule of law in our state and gave lawmakers immunity from prosecution for corruption. It’s hard to believe that South Carolina politicians are so non-partisan and without ideological motivation that they have created a system that allows them to profit from office with almost no consequence.

We tell ourselves that corruption is “par for the course” for politicians, that it happens all over the country, and that our checks and balances will catch the offenders eventually. That may be true in other states, but it’s not true in ours. There are few checks and balances in our government.  We’ve been proving that through diligent research for the past six years, and it is irrefutable that South Carolina’s government is unlike any other in the concentration of power and secrecy.

Our Speaker of the House is the most powerful politician in the state. Arguably he has more unchecked power than any politician in the nation. And he has done everything in his considerable power to shut down not only a grand jury investigation into corruption allegations (brought by the SC Policy Council) but also to ensure that lawmakers are above the law almost entirely.

Now is the time to fight back. There will be no other reform in this state until we tear down the entire system of government that is designed to allow a handful of legislative leaders almost total control of our government, which they are not only using to protect themselves but to punish those who challenge them.

We have spent the last several years exposing the problem and proposing the only solution – we must restore the republic to South Carolina government and finally implement the checks and balances that allow us to control it.  We have a great deal of work ahead of us, but nothing is going to change if we don’t fully acknowledge the corruption in our government and focus all the energy we’ve put other places into fixing the problem in our own backyard.  On June 24 the state Supreme Court will hear Attorney General Alan Wilson’s appeal of Judge Manning’s ruling that legislators can’t be investigated or prosecuted for corruption unless lawmakers themselves say so. That ruling cannot stand. If it does, there is little to be done in this state.

Wake up, South Carolina! Your crisis is in your own backyard. The biggest threat to your freedom is not from far-away tyrants, but rather the ones you chose.  They are truly out of control, and it will take unprecedented public pressure to stop them.  You can start by planning to be at the June 24 Supreme Court hearing in Columbia. Send every person you know a link to www.scpolicycouncil.org and www.thenerve.org.

And if you haven’t joined the Policy Council, I’m going to ask you to do that today.  We need your support more than ever. There is a dedicated and diverse coalition coming together to put an end to this corruption. Please be a part of it!