S.C. Rep. Kirkman Finlay (R-Richland) rubs some people the wrong way with his gruff, no-nonsense demeanor – but we’ve always preferred that sort of personality from a politician.

Seriously … it’s the glad-handing, back-slapping, baby-kissing elected officials we worry about …

Anyway, Finlay – a former city of Columbia, S.C. councilman – has been a solid pro-free market vote during his first year in the S.C. General Assembly, as well as a real leader when it was time to do some actual heavy lifting on ethics reform and government transparency.

So we’re always glad to show him some love … and encourage others to do the same.

This month, Finlay is hosting a community forum that he’s opened not only to his constituents in S.C. House District 75 – but all “concerned citizens of South Carolina.”  Good.  Finlay has had his eye on statewide issues ever since he took his seat, so it’s not surprising he’s opening his town hall meeting to anyone with thoughts to share.

“I want to hear your ideas and thoughts about how we can improve our community and state,” Finlay wrote in a Facebook invitation, noting that ethics reform, public safety, education, taxes and spending were likely to rank among the most hotly debated issues at the S.C. State House this year.

Finlay’s community forum will be held on Tuesday, January 21 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Doc’s Barbecue (one of our founding editor’s favorites) – which is located at 1601 Shop Road in Columbia.

Check it out … and check out Finlay while you’re at it.  We think you’ll be as impressed as we have been.

The S.C. State House is literally brimming with intellectually incurious bromides – anti-free market fiscal liberals who run this state into the ground at the behest of taxpayer-subsidized special interests.  Finlay proved in 2013 that he’s a different sort of animal – and our hope is 2014 will be a breakout year for him in terms of challenging this state’s failed status quo with substantive policy.

UPDATE: According to Finlay’s campaign, the date of this gathering has been moved to January 28. The time – 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. – remains in effect.