Charleston Paper Kills Another Bobby Harrell Scandal Story

Once again, the state of South Carolina’s largest newspaper is in the hot seat after it showed favorable treatment to an influential hometown politician. This time, The Charleston (S.C.) Post and Courier removed a story from the internet which portrayed powerful S.C. Speaker of the House Bobby Harrell in a…

Once again, the state of South Carolina’s largest newspaper is in the hot seat after it showed favorable treatment to an influential hometown politician. This time, The Charleston (S.C.) Post and Courier removed a story from the internet which portrayed powerful S.C. Speaker of the House Bobby Harrell in a negative light.

Free press? Not in the Palmetto State, apparently …

According to the story (which was removed from the paper’s website mere hours after it was originally posted) Harrell’s political action committee paid a Charleston-based public relations firm at least $23,000 to promote one of his favored transportation boondoggles.

Here’s a screen grab of the headline as it appeared on Google News late Wednesday evening …

harrell story screen grab

Of course readers who try to click on the story receive a “page not found” error message.

According to a report filed with the S.C. State Ethics Commission, Harrell’s PAC paid Rawle Murdy $23,207.52 for an “election expense,” although the firm has stated on the record that it does no such electoral work.

In fact one of the firm’s name partners, Bruce Murdy, specifically told reporters to “ask the client” when asked whether the work done for Harrell’s PAC was actually done on behalf of the controversial Interstate 526 project.

Ironically, news of the Post and Courier yanking this story from the web comes one week after Harrell’s PAC yanked its own website offline.

At the very least, Harrell’s PAC appears to have falsified its disclosure forms, and potentially violated campaign finance laws by spending PAC funds on a non-legitimate expense.

Sources close to Harrell declined to discuss the story with FITS. Meanwhile staffers at the Post and Courier also declined to respond.

Harrell is currently facing a host of ethical allegations. For starters he’s guilty as sin when it comes to the improper reimbursement of hundreds of thousands of dollars from his campaign account. In fact he’s returned $23,000 of the money – the equivalent of a bank robber returning to the scene of his crime and giving back a portion of his ill-gotten gains.

Most recently he was accused of applying improper pressure on the S.C. Pharmacy Board and the S.C. Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (SCLLR) to take actions benefitting his pharmaceutical business.

The Post and Courier broke the Harrell reimbursement scandal, although its leadership quickly wilted in the face of pressure from Harrell – most notably an alleged threat involving the annual $13 million bribe the S.C. General Assembly gives the newspaper industry.


Pic: Travis Bell Photography, Travis Bell Photography

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Amos February 6, 2013 at 11:07 pm

The P&C published an article that it has a new managing editor.

A new pimp-in-charge.

From Iowa.

I’m sure Pierre Manigault has briefed pimp-in-charge that Bobby Harrell, Glenn McConnell, and Hunley articles require his prior approval.

Business as usual, in our last-in-the-nation state.

Anonymous February 6, 2013 at 11:19 pm

ive noticed youve been taking down some articles as well fits

CNSYD February 7, 2013 at 8:29 am

BINGO!! Pot meet kettle.

Philip Branton February 7, 2013 at 11:17 am

Dear Information war Fare and Psy-ops cadets,

It is refreshing that “someone” is noticing how information to the home crowd is very slim compared to the host of information needed on the frontlines..!! Cadets, this is another clear example of how every troop’s phone and tablet are NOT being used offensively enough on the home front to WIN a war.! Cadets, the fear in Charles Rowe’s keyboard and Brian Hick’s “pension”, can only suspend FITSNEWS for so long. John Monk and Brian Hicks know full well that the “game” has changed and will certainly find ways to inspire their leadership to makes course change directions. (or will they?)

Cadets, individuals and stakeholders that have their futures entwined with the success of Wil Folks are watching very carefully and will hopefully steer Wil from Making the same mistakes and dancing the same advertising dance as Mr. Manigault..!!

Cadets, how would the Post and Courier take advantage of a Saturday Night Live version of FITSNEWS for profit..!?

Cadets…remember……Wil Folk’s silence concerning our state’s slavery to foreign OIL and energy makes Fitsnews just as dangerous as the Post and Courier to our fellow citizens..! Wil Folks can sprinkle Bobby Harrell’s toes with “cesna water” all he wants too…..its our state’s local energy TAX revenue that is the “silent killer”…!!

Cadets….just sit back and think… ask yourself this question. “Just how much energy tax revenue (and taxpayer wealth) LEAVES our state’s borders each and every day..!?”

Cadets….look at your powerbill…..

…..look at your gas tax at the PUMP….!!

…..look at the taxes you pay on the goods you buy that USE foreign OIL…!?!

….CADETS……how has FITSNEWS just been used to make you think about WHAT…!?

…Cadets…how would you use this article to say “Hi” to Bobby Harrell and Brian Hicks at the same time…!?!?

…Cadets……what will YOU do today..!?

Billy K. Mulligan February 6, 2013 at 11:47 pm

So Bakari Sellers was busted for DUI and has had his license suspended numerous times prior to refusing a Breathalyzer on this most recent charge.

Yep, old Bobby Harrell is corrupt and should be deposed, indicted and repudiated.

No Escape For Harrell. February 7, 2013 at 12:08 am

The rats best distance themselves from Harrell or they will go down with him. He’s over with and now riding on borrowed time. Lots of groups and people focused on taking him down. And he is going to fall. After he is destroyed, others will fall right behind him.

Frank February 7, 2013 at 7:23 am

Was Sellers busted for a DUI?????? I have not heard that.

Pappy O'Daniel February 7, 2013 at 7:42 am

Yes-from this morning’s P&C

COLUMBIA — Denmark Democratic Rep. Bakari Sellers was charged with driving under the influence after leaving a University of South Carolina football game in October 2012, he confirmed Wednesday evening.

Sellers, a 28-year-old attorney, was charged by the Chester County Sheriff’s Office with a first-offense DUI on. Oct. 7, court records show.

Sellers said he was driving to visit family after leaving the USC-University of Georgia game held at Williams-Brice Stadium the evening of Oct. 6.

The fourth-term lawmaker said he is not looking for special treatment and wants to move past the arrest.

“I look forward to all the facts coming out,” Sellers said. “This does not affect my leadership ability.”

Sellers said he declined to take a breathalyzer test after being pulled over and his driver’s license was suspended as a result.

That suspension has since been dismissed, he said.

Sellers declined to go into further detail on the circumstances of the arrest.

Records show he has paid a fine but the case has not been fully resolved. A jury trial has been requested in the case, but Sellers said a date has not yet been set for that trial.

keepingemhonest February 7, 2013 at 7:52 am

The real story with Bakari is how his suspension got dismissed.

He refused to take a breathalyzer test, which results in a MANDATORY six month suspension…no ifs, buts or maybes if you are a regular person. Somehow, his suspension got dismissed?

Sounds like unfair influence

jeffy01 February 7, 2013 at 9:37 am

and in other breaking news….its Thursday

Isotope Soap February 7, 2013 at 12:31 pm


shifty henry February 7, 2013 at 4:13 pm

…. today is Charles Dickens Day, and I am reading these updated classics—

1) Nikki Haley on the Hearth

2) Great Expectations (as told by Candace and Thad)

3) The Mystery of James Clyburn

Philip Branton February 7, 2013 at 3:07 pm

Dear Readers of the Post and Courier…..

Have you by chance read this article..?? readers….when you sit back and think (really “Al Sharpton and Rush Limbaugh” hard) why in the world has the Post and Courier or FITSNEWS not entertained a reader “appreciation model” such as this..!?

….What about the Charleston City Paper..??

…SKIRT Magazine….??

…..Baptist Monthly…??

….Sea COAST Church City website…??

Readers, if you were an investor in the MACE Group, why would you NOT consider a similar model to do “What” to Bobby Harrell..!?

Readers, now change your thought gears for a moment…just a moment…….how would SKIRT Magazine be used by the Susan G Komen Foundation in REVERSE…!??? To make more money for Cancer Research…or Bobby Harrell Awareness..??

shifty henry February 7, 2013 at 9:03 pm

… interesting link, but I’m confused about the $100 gift checs – just appears that they are cashed twice?

Philip Branton February 8, 2013 at 10:22 am


Well, it may be a little confusing the way the article is written……until you really sit back and THINK from the point of view of a business owner that is paying for the advertisement or the CEO of the newspaper that have to be concerned about their old business model that has to change to take advantage of the new media mediums in a profitable way.

Just sit and think for a moment as if you were Sic Willie and published FITSNEWS via the MACE group.? Most readers of newspapers and magazines have never had a clue how their information has been studied in the past to influence future advertising and pricing models. Consumers and readers just have no clue. Even students sitting at USC in Journalism school have NO clue how their readers of the article that they will be tasked to write are being leveraged.!? Think of McDonalds and the monopoly games or any casino and the info that is leveraged..!? Its the same for the STATE and the Post and Courier or FITSNEWS or Drudgereport or Saturday Night Live or the North Charleston Performing Arts Center. The business model NO one in power wants to give the readers or consumers of ANYTHING is the knowledge of how to influence….what?

Shifty…..just look at this comment section web page and think.? Do you see any advertisement on either side that Wil Folks is getting paid for.? Are you or I getting paid for adding great “comment” content..!? Do you see Exxon or Shell or Progressive Insurance or Papa John’s or “Diane’s on Devine” using this space to tickle you while you read and spread this article via Facebook..!? Shifty, remember the bloggers who are trying to sue Huffington POST for not getting paid..!? Just take a cruise through the Huffingtomn Post website and really look and compare it to SKIRT Magazine ……what do you see.?

Do you see a whole lot a money that Wil Folks is not getting a piece of…WHY..!?@! Is Wil Folks blind..!?! No, of course not. Wil Folks knows that he is sitting on Bobby Harrell dynamite because of YOU and I and SMIRKS and everyone else in this comment section.

Shifty, how did Drudgereport use his dynamite..!? Just look at how many views the Drudgereport has had in the last year or month. Now think of how much more he would have if those viewers were paid 10 cent a view or …more. How would the drudgereport advertisers change? Would legacy advertisers ever allow or even want to allow a model like that to succeed..!?

Think of airline miles……do passengers ever get a choice of using their miles to use on flights using LOCAL Algae bio-jet fuel instead of foreign to help the WAR EFFORT..!? Why not..!?

So then re-read the article shifty and think of how readers would use FITSNEWS to “applaud” the comapnies and advertisers that are funding BOBBY HARRELL….or Robert Ford….or GE Wind Turbines……or Steve Spurrier for using Clemson Algae Bio-Jet fuel that supports the war effort and LOCAL black Farmers…!?!

Shifty……are you going to let Wil folks use you..or are you going to realize how valuable YOU are to Wil Folks and those that benefit from every facet of his business model…!?

Shifty….do you really believe that Wil Folks does NOT read what you write…every once in a while..!?! He does care about what he does…doesn’t he….we both know that his bottom line cares…!!!

shifty henry February 8, 2013 at 8:59 pm

@Philip – thanks for an excellent analysis. I’m not involved in any political activity so much (make that most) of how the system works is a black hole to me.

You are correct about one thing. I’ve noticed that when fewer articles are posted, fewer bloggers sign in. Case in point, the recent lack of posts and folks asking where? where? where? In fact. one blogger mentioned that he needed his “daily fix!”

Notice how today with a few stories, we are like chickens being thrown our feed – and, you got it, I got fed too.

I’ve noticed that while Will provides a variety of articles, there are those that really get everyone cranked up.

But I appreciate both the articles and the comments, and that includes the facts, mostly facts, humor and wit. I try to throw a little something back for everybody when the little gears in my head engage.

ohnonotagain February 8, 2013 at 3:10 pm

I notice the article is back up.
Not much of an article, all told.
There’s a difference between killing a story and pulling it back for apparently mor work.

Philip Branton February 11, 2013 at 11:14 am

Hmm….interesting……we wonder just where all the comments have gone that were originally here? I guess Reputation Defender has scrubbed this entire sight for Bobby Harrell..!!

Philip Branton February 11, 2013 at 10:14 am

Hmm….interesting……we wonder just where all the comments have gone that were originally here? I guess Reputation Defender has scrubbed this entire sight for Bobby Harrell..!!


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