State of South Carolina Archives: on Government Reform

Amy Klobuchar: Push for voting rights for African-Americans

Q: Was the way that Mayor Bloomberg implemented stop and frisk racist?

KLOBUCHAR: Yes, and I think that what we need to do instead of just reviewing everything from the past is talk about where we're going to go forward. Martin Luther King once said that we are all "tied in a single garment of destiny, and that what affects one of us directly affects all of us indirectly." So when there is racism in the criminal justice system, then we need to fix it. And to me that means sentencing reform, like the First Step Act, and extending that to the states with the Second Step Act. It means equal opportunity. Because if we don't pass [that bill] to invest in impoverished communities, we're never going to get to that single garment of destiny.

[Editor's note: this phrase comes from the "Letter from Birmingham Jail", where Martin Luther King writes, "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny."]

Source: 10th Democratic Primary debate on eve of S.C. primary Feb 25, 2020

Joe Biden: Put a black woman on the Supreme Court

Everyone should be represented. No one's better than me and I'm no better than anyone else. The fact is, what we should be doing, about the Supreme Court: I'm looking forward to making sure there's a black woman on the Supreme Court, to make sure we in fact get every representation. Not a joke; I pushed very hard for that.
Source: 10th Democratic Primary debate on eve of S.C. primary Feb 25, 2020

Pete Buttigieg: 21st century voting rights: core of Frederick Douglass plan

When I was born, there was no difference in your life expectancy, if you were born in a rural area or a city. Now the gap is the biggest it has been in a generation, and that is particularly affecting black rural families.

We're seeing hospital closures right and left. And we're seeing them, in particular, in states where Medicaid was not expanded, something that is hurting black and poor white families and is largely the result of racial voters suppression.

See, all of these things are connected, housing, wages, the ability to get anything done on criminal justice reform. All of these things are going to be harder to deal with as long as black voices are systematically excluded from political participation, which is happening on everything from the purging of voter rolls to the closing of voting locations. And that harms everyone.

It's why in my Frederick Douglass plan for comprehensively dealing with these issues, part of the core of it is a 21st Century Voting Rights Act.

Source: 10th Democratic Primary debate on eve of S.C. primary Feb 25, 2020

Tom Steyer: Russian election interference is cyberwarfare

Look, 21st Century warfare is cyber warfare. What we're having is an attack by a hostile foreign power on our democracy right now. The question you have to ask is, where is the commander-in-chief?

[President Trump] did stand next to Vladimir Putin. There was a hostile, foreign attack on our election last time and the president sided with the hostile foreign power. That's why I started "Need to Impeach."

That's what we have to do. We have to oppose a president who sides with a hostile foreign power that commits cyber warfare against the United States of America. That's where we are. Where are all these patriotic Republicans who wave the flag, but when we're actually under attack, they side with our enemies? It's outrageous.

That's why he should have been impeached. They covered it up. And I was years before these people. There's something wrong here. We're under attack, and they're not doing a darn thing about it.

Source: 10th Democratic Primary debate on eve of S.C. primary Feb 25, 2020

Ralph Norman: Term limits to end the rein of career politicians

Ralph's Plan: Introduce a Term Limits bill that would cap the number of years Congressmen can serve. It's time we end the rein of career politicians and make them come home to live under the laws they pass. Term limits would cut the influence of special interest lobbyists and encourage a true citizen-legislature.
Source: 2017 S.C. House campaign website, May 16, 2017

Henry McMaster: Served on state Commission on Ethics Reform

2012: Appointed to the South Carolina Commission on Ethics Reform: Led the Commission on Ethics Reform, a bipartisan group, to develop ways to strengthen our states outdated, and often ineffective, ethics laws. With Henry's leadership they drafted what is considered the blue print for a more ethical government, a government that works for the people. We are now closer than ever to enacting real ethics standards for our state's public officials which promotes honesty & accountability.
Source: 2010 S.C. Gubernatorial campaign website Jan 11, 2017

Elizabeth Colbert-Busch: Will return 10% of congressional salary to the government

Colbert Busch said that, if elected, she would return 10 percent of her congressional salary to the government.

The latest finance reports filed with the Federal Election Commission show Colbert Busch has raised more money than Sanford--about $1.2 million to about $790,000. But money from his old campaign accounts left Sanford with about the same amount as Colbert Busch for the campaign.

Colbert Busch is currently on leave from her job as director of business development for Clemson University's Wind Turbine Drive Testing Facility in North Charleston.

Source: News12 on 2013 S.C. House District 1 debate Apr 29, 2013

Mark Sanford: I was against earmarks before being anti-earmark was cool

[Colbert-Busch] cited Sanford's vote against the dredging of the Charleston port while he was a member of Congress. Colbert Busch said she met with then-US Rep. Sanford when she was working as a government liaison for a maritime company to encourage him to support the dredging project. Sanford, she said, indicated he would do so. "And, in fact, you didn't tell the truth. In fact, you turned around and did the opposite," Colbert Busch said to Sanford.

Sanford fired back that Colbert Busch later wrote him a $500 campaign-contribution check. "I don't think it must have bothered her that much, given she wrote a $500 check in support of my candidacy," said Sanford, smiling. Sanford also denied Colbert Busch's statements that he did not support the dredging and other economic-development projects, saying he disagreed with the methods of paying for the projects, not the actual projects. "Because I was against (congressional) earmarks before being against earmarks was cool," he said.

Source: The State webzine on 2013 S.C. House District 1 debate Apr 29, 2013

Henry McMaster: Register all lobbyists; speed up FOIA

Source: The State newsmagazine, "Commission on S.C. ethics reforms" Jan 28, 2013

Henry McMaster: Full disclosure of campaign funding & fines for violators

Source: The State newsmagazine, "Commission on S.C. ethics reforms" Jan 28, 2013

Nikki Haley: Register all lobbyists; speed up FOIA

Source: The State newsmagazine, "Commission on S.C. ethics reforms" Jan 28, 2013

Nikki Haley: Full disclosure of campaign funding & fines for violators

Source: The State newsmagazine, "Commission on S.C. ethics reforms" Jan 28, 2013

Brad Hutto: Limit corporate and PAC campaign contributions

Q: Do you support limits on the following types of contributions for state candidates: Individual?

A: Yes.

Q: Political Action Committee?

A: Yes.


A: Yes.

Q: Political Party?

A: No.

Q: Do you support requiring full and timely disclosure of campaign finance information??

A: Yes.

Q: Do you support requiring a government-issued photo identification in order to vote at the polls??

A: No.

Hutto adds, "Until the State is prepared to issue new voter id cards with photos, then the current requirements of a voter registration card should be allowed. Changes to the law should only apply once a new card is issued to a voter."

Source: S.C. Congressional Election 2012 Political Courage Test Nov 1, 2012

Nikki Haley: We capped lawsuit damages; next tort reform is loser-pays

Until 2011, South Carolina was the only state in the southeast that did not cap damages on lawsuits. Thanks to the people in this room, that is no longer the case. That was a huge first step. Remember that there is always more to be done on tort reform. Looking at the states we compete with--the Tennessees, the Alabamas, the Virginias--it would be na‹ve to think they will settle for playing second fiddle to South Carolina in the economic arms race. They will scrap for jobs every bit as hard as we will. And the greater the protection we give our people and businesses from frivolous lawsuits, the better positioned we will be to capitalize on other assets. The next step in tort reform is a loser-pays system, so that there is a real cost to suits that waste the time and money of our businesses and our courts, and that our companies understand that South Carolina won't stand for trial lawyers playing games with their bottom line.
Source: 2012 S.C. State of the State Address Jan 18, 2012

Alvin Greene: Keep campaign donation limits; no voluntary spending limits

Q: Do you support increasing the amount individuals are permitted to contribute to federal campaigns?

A: No.

Q: Should Congress regulate indirect campaign contributions from corporations and unions?

A: Yes.

Q: Do you support removing all contribution limits on federal campaigns?

A: No.

Q: Should candidates for federal office be encouraged to meet voluntary spending limits?

A: No.

Source: S.C. Congressional Election 2010 Political Courage Test Oct 1, 2010

Jim DeMint: Earmarks are how lobbyists grease the skids

Q: Lisa Murkowski in Alaska lost to a tea party candidate; Bob Bennett in Utah lost to a tea party candidate.

DEMINT: These are appropriators, Bob Bennett, Lisa Murkowski. They believe in their job is to take home the bacon. It's a big part of the culture here in Washington. Even in Alaska, the voters there threw out someone who was bringing home the bacon. Joe Miller, running against earmarks, because what we're hearing all over America is, "I don't want money for my state if it's going to bankrupt my country."

Q: But we're talking, really, 1% or 2% of a budget here, when you're talking about the earmarks.

DEMINT: Oh, it's like saying the engine is a small part of the train. All the legislation, you look at health care, was pulled through by "Cornhusker kickbacks," that's an earmark. The bail-outs failed in the House until they went back and added earmarks. So it's always a way to grease the skids, and it's the power here. It's why thousands of lobbyists are here.

Source: CNN "State of the Union" coverage: 2010 S.C. Senate debate Sep 19, 2010

John McCain: I’m “the sheriff”, not Miss Congeniality, about pork bills

As president, I know how to stop the spending. I won’t let another pork-barrel earmark spending bill cross my desk without vetoing it, & I’ll make the authors of it famous. I saved the taxpayers $6 billion on a bogus tanker deal. I’m called “the sheriff” by my friends in the Senate who are the appropriators, and I didn’t win Miss Congeniality. And as president, I won’t win Miss Congeniality, either. I’ll stop the outrageous spending, and that’ll be the best thing that can happen to America’s economy.
Source: 2008 GOP debate in S.C. sponsored by Fox News Jan 10, 2008

Mark Sanford: Limit campaign contributions but not campaign spending

Q: Do you support limiting individual contributions to state candidates?

A: Yes

Q: For PAC contributions?

A: Yes.

Q: For Corporate contributions?

A: Yes.

Q: For Political Parties?

A: Yes.

Q: Do you support requiring full disclosure of campaign finance information?

A: Yes.

Q: Do you support imposing spending limits on state level political campaigns?

A: No. I believe we need to bring sunshine to the political process in SC. Soft money donated to parties should be disclosed.

Source: 2002 S.C. Gubernatorial National Political Awareness Test Nov 1, 2002

  • The above quotations are from State of South Carolina Politicians: Archives.
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2020 Presidential contenders on Government Reform:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
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Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
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Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
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