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Columns

  • In 2011, let’s change S.C. government

    It’s often said that the New Year is a time for new beginnings, an opportunity for fresh starts. Typically we vow to exercise more, eat less, spend a little less time at work, develop new skills or set some other worthy goal.
    For South Carolina’s elected leaders, perhaps the New Year presents us an opportunity to step back, reflect on the true meaning of public service and evaluate how we can make our state a better place to live.

  • Mulvaney pledges to be accessible to constituents

    First of all, a belated Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. I hope everyone had a safe and enjoyable Christmas weekend with family and friends. 
    With the new year comes a new Congress, the 112th, which officially began Jan. 5. As the real business at hand gets cranked up, there is a good bit to report.
    Lots of folks have asked about our local offices. Our first office will be in Rock Hill, on Ebenezer Road. This was a fairly simple decision, as more than 50 percent of the District 5 population lives within 20 miles of there.  

  • Spratt reflects on 28 years of service to 5th District

    On Dec. 22, 2010, U.S. Rep. John Spratt (D-SC) submitted the following
    statement for the record:
    Madam Speaker, when I was elected to Congress 28 years ago, it was the fulfillment of a life-long ambition. But I had never served in elective office before, and frankly, I wondered how well it would wear – all the backslapping and glad-handing and garrulous talk.

  • Domestic abuse serious problem in South Carolina

    Many women and children are in serious danger in a place where they should be safe and secure- within their own home.
    Domestic violence is a very serious problem in the state of South Carolina.
    Annually, more than 36,000 victims report a domestic incident to law enforcement agencies around the state.
    During the past 13 years, an average of 33 women have been killed each year by their intimate partner.
    In South Carolina, the term domestic violence refers to violence between a male and female who are married, or share a child in common.

  • Why ‘stimulus’ didn’t work

    I was recently contacted by a reporter who wanted me to share my thoughts on the “stimulus” and whether it had been successful.
     I told her that the stimulus didn’t work, especially not the way Washington said it would.
     There’s no joy in saying that the stimulus act – a record-shattering spending spree that was advertised as a sure-fire way to jump start our economy – was a failure.

  • Sweet tea: Greatest threat to S.C. since Sherman

    A recent visit to a local restaurant in Lancaster found me waiting behind three wide bodies blocking the tea dispensers. Despite tilting the sweet tea canister 45 degrees they found none to be had, so they waited for it to be filled. It didn’t enter their minds to try unsweet tea just as it wouldn’t have entered mine several years ago.

  • Evidence of angels right here

  • F-35s are good economic news for South Carolina

    On Dec. 9, the U.S. Department of Defense announced its decision to base many of its new F-35 fighter jets in South Carolina. Two training squadrons and three operational squadron, almost 90 new jets, have been designated for Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort.
    That’s great news, especially given South Carolina’s current economy. The new jets will mean hundreds of new jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars in new construction projects for the state.

  • What kind of IL fire department do you want?

    This column is in response to J.R. Wilt’s recent comments on the Indian Land Fire Protection District.
    I take issue with Mr. Wilt’s assertion that firefighting is a part-time occupation. With the amount of training and time required to maintain certifications and the difficulty of recruiting volunteers, firefighting is becoming a full-time paid occupation.

  • Education voters have spoken, who will listen?

    The numbers are shocking – 110,000 students trapped in persistently failing schools, 30,000 students per high school class fail to graduate on time, 87 public high schools identified as “dropout factories,” $12,200 per student in spending and a mere 44 cents per educational dollar directed to the classroom.
    The numbers, and the students that comprise them, are becoming well known. It makes sense that education voters across the state made their frustration clear in November.