Stephen G. Morrison, an attorney at Nelson Mullins and former candidate for mayor of Columbia, S.C., died in New York City this morning, sources tell FITS.

He was reportedly in the “Big Apple” on business.

Morrison – the subject of the S.C. Supreme Court’s famous “In Re: Anonymous” memo on lawyer conduct – finished third to Steve Benjamin and future S.C. Rep. Kirkman Finlay in the 2010 Columbia mayor’s race, garnering 29 percent of the vote.

A hard-core liberal, he helped lead a school funding lawsuit brought against the state by its rural districts – who are (like their urban counterparts) sitting on wads of unspent cash. He was also a big supporter of government funding for the arts.

Obviously we have very little in common ideologically with Morrison – and the firm he represented is among the arch enemies of reform in South Carolina. Having said that, we wish his family the best in their time of grief.