MORNING BUZZ: Spurrier stops by the Senate, bright day for solar power and BMW's big announcement

Posted by ANDREW SHAIN on March 28, 2014 

USC football coach Steve Spurrier holds a copy of a Senate resolution honoring his success with the Gamecocks. Sen. Thomas McElveen, D-Sumter, (right) met the coach two years ago while campaigning in Spurrier's neighborhood.

ANDREW SHAIN — ashain@thestate.com

The Carolina-Clemson rivalry takes no breaks -- especially in the State House. Gamecocks head coach Steve Spurrier's appearance in the state Senate chamber Thursday gave USC-educated lawmakers another chance to needle their Clemson counterparts about the five straight victories over the Tigers. The Senate gave Spurrier a resolution honoring his achievements at USC, including those five victories over a team in orange.

A solar energy bill that boosters say will expand South Carolina’s use of sun power breezed through a Senate subcommittee Thursday, putting the legislation on a faster pace for approval by the Legislature.

Three Republican governors, including South Carolina's Nikki Haley, who weren't invited to GOP super donor Sheldon Adelson's political gathering in Las Vegas this week are nonetheless trumpeting their agreement with him against Internet gambling, The Associated Press reports.

State GOP chairman Matt Moore said he has embarked on a campaign to get records about possible nepotism and political interference in the operations of the Richland County elections office.

Former S.C. Attorney General Henry McMaster filed to run for lieutenant governor on Thursday, joining a crowded field of Republicans vying for the state's No. 2 office.

Former U.S. Attorney Pete Strom said he has dropped out of the race for a seat on the University of South Carolina board of trustees held by Columbia attorney William Hubbard, the school’s second-longest-tenured trustee.

Lt. Gov. Glenn McConnell's selection as the next College of Charleston president is drawing fire from the Southern Poverty Law Center, one of the nation's premier defenders of civil rights which also concentrates on hate organizations, The (Charleston) Post and Courier reports.

Rep. Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina will seek the chairmanship of the Republican Study Committee in the 114th Congress, National Journal has learned, the first significant measure of internal campaigning amid a season marked by quiet, cautious jostling for positions in the next session, the National Journal reports.

What's happening today: BMW will announce a new project at its Greer plant (expected to be the X7 SUV) at 1 p.m. with U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, BMW Manufacturing president Manfred Erlacher and Gov. Nikki Haley. ... Haley will address the Chief Human Resource Officers as Talent Architect Conference at the Columbia Marriott in Columbia at 8:55 a.m. ... U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-North Charleston, and U.S. Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-Spartanburg, will speak on "Understanding the Affordable Care Act" at Wofford College as part of a guest lecture series on health care policy and administration.

Who's filed: Updated list of candidates entering federal, statewide and S.C. House elections. Filing ends noon Sunday.

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