Politics & Government

Alan Wilson’s role in corruption probe now an issue in his dad’s congressional race

Attorney General Alan Wilson
Attorney General Alan Wilson File

Like son, like father?

S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson’s role in the State House corruption probe has become an issue in his father’s race for the U.S. House as Democrat Sean Carrigan uses a state grand jury report, criticizing Alan Wilson, against his opponent, U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson, R-Lexington.

The grand jury report, released Tuesday, accused Alan Wilson of interfering with an investigation of his longtime political ally, consultant Richard Quinn, and his firm’s influence at the State House.

“If Alan Wilson was willing to exchange information with Quinn, I have no doubt his father, Joe Wilson, would do or has done the same,” Carrigan said in a statement.

Carrigan noted both Wilsons had longstanding ties to Quinn’s firm, which pleaded guilty last year to lobbying without a license. Several lawmakers tied to Quinn’s firm also have pleaded guilty to misconduct charges, including Quinn’s son, former state Rep. Rick Quinn, R-Lexington.

For his part, Attorney General Wilson said in a statement when the report was released that it constituted a political smear, “riddled with already-disproven political innuendo and baseless conjecture.”

While the report of the state grand jury investigating State House corruption is critical of Alan Wilson, the report doesn’t mention Joe Wilson, now running for his 10th term in Congress representing South Carolina’s 2nd District.

Reached for comment, Joe Wilson campaign manager John Parker said the congressman’s campaign is keeping its focus elsewhere.

“Economic growth is up, unemployment is down, tax relief is creating jobs, and there is a sense that strong American leadership abroad will keep American families safe,” Parker said. “Congressman Wilson is focused on building on this momentum, and that’s what he’ll do in the next Congress.”