John Crangle, the unofficial dean of South Carolina government watchdogs, has resigned his longheld post with Common Cause of South Carolina.
But he isn’t going far.
In a new job, Crangle, 76, an author and lawyer, will be government relations director for the S.C. Progressive Network. He plans to become a registered lobbyist for the broad-based group. He will still be a fixture in the State House lobby and the halls of legislative office buildings.
“I’m going to try to provide the Network with advice about framing issues and about lobbying to to get the kind of good government legislation they are interested in,” Crangle said. “I will be working on many of the same issues I’ve been working on, but also many other issues.”
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“I’m going to try to fill in a gap left by Joe Neal,” Crangle said. “I won’t be able to do it but I will try. I used to call him at least once a month. He was very knowledgeable about the legislative issues and generous with his time.”
Neal, a longtime Democratic state lawmaker who represented Lower Richland and part of Sumter County, died Tuesday. He was a longtime affiliate of the Progressive Network for many years. It was founded some 20 years ago.
The Progressive Network is a coalition of 52 different civil rights, workers, environmental, health care, prison and ethics reform organizations.
For many years, Crangle monitored ethics and open government issues in the Legislature though the state’s chapter of Common Cause. He was regarded as so knowledgeable on various issues that news organizations regularly sought him out for comment.
“The Progressive Network has a much greater range of issues than Common Cause,” Crangle said. “I like that broad brush approach, and I am looking forward to working with them.”
Crangleis the author of “Operation Lost Trust and the Ethics Reform Movement.” The book, published last year, is an in-depth look at one of the biggest public corruption scandals in modern S.C. History – the FBI sting investigation of widescale bribery in the General Assembly during the 1990s.