CHARLESTON — Haley ‘missing in action,’ opponent says
Independent candidate for governor Tom Ervin released a new radio ad Wednesday shredding Gov. Nikki Haley as “missing in action” after having lunch with rock star Joan Jett at the Republican Governors Association meeting earlier this week in New York.
Haley was attending the RGA’s three-day spring gathering. At the same time, lawmakers in Columbia are debating ethics legislation.
Haley and her husband, Michael, had lunch with the sometimes leather-clad rocker Jett at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel, where the RGA meeting is taking place.
The 30-second Ervin ad – which is being run statewide, his campaign said – includes the lines: “This week the South Carolina General Assembly is debating ethics reform. And where is our governor? Gov. Haley is in New York having lunch at the Waldorf Astoria. And who with? Rock star Joan Jett. Haley promised us real ethics reform but instead of fighting for South Carolina, Gov. Haley is missing in action.”
Rob Godfrey, Haley’s campaign spokesman, downplayed the ad as a stunt. “It’s just silly politics. No one in our state has pushed harder, or is pushing harder, for ethics reform than Governor Haley,” he said.
House passes ethics reform bill
The S.C. House has passed the latest version of the ethics reform bill to create an independent investigatory commission.
Lawmakers voted 110-0 Wednesday to return to the state Senate legislation that seeks to create a commission to investigate allegations of wrongdoing by elected state officials.
The commission would be made up of 12 members appointed by the legislative, judicial and executive branches. Political donors and government officials would be barred from appointment.
The proposed commission would investigate complaints of ethical violations and leave punishment up to the respective disciplinary body for each branch and legislative chamber.
The bill proposes creating a committee to determine what violations would be criminal and require prosecution. A previously proposed commission was opposed by Gov. Nikki Haley for including legislators and judges. The Associated Press