PARTY ACCUMULATES $300,000 DEBT OVER BALLOT ISSUE
Its politicians like to rail against deficit spending … but the South Carolina Republican Party itself has had to borrow more than $300,000 this year to cover legal fees associated with this year’s flood of ballot-related lawsuits.
For those of you who’ve already forgotten this lesson in ass-backward democracy, we’re referring of course to”Ballot-mageddon” – this year’s mass purge of the state’s 2012 primary ballot over the failure of several hundred candidates to fill out their paperwork properly.
We’re the ones who broke this story, by the way … although we had no idea at the time just what a can of worms we were opening.
Anyway, did the SCGOP get value for its investment?
Umm …. not so much.
Not only did hardly any of the party’s primary candidates get reinstated to the ballot, but their lead attorney Kevin Hall was roundly rebuked by the S.C. Supreme Court for his lack of honesty on behalf of the party.
“We’re disappointed in you and your client,” S.C. Chief Justice Jean Toal told Hall. “We feel you’ve let us down in terms of being straight with the court.”
Another Justice said he was “sorely disappointed” in Hall, and accused him of “insulting the intelligence” of the court.
Of course Hall is laughing all the way to the bank now, isn’t he? Yup. In fact his firm is set to receive the lion’s share of this borrowed cash – on top of the tens of thousands of dollars it received prior to the ballot drama as a “retainer.”
How much do they stand to pocket? SCGOP executive director Matt Moore did not respond to our requests for comment, but one of our moles at the party says that Hall’s firm will make “upwards of a quarter million” from the SCGOP this year.
In contrast to all this wasteful spending, the S.C. Democratic Party managed to avoid incurring serious legal costs associated with the ballot drama. How did they manage to do that? For starters, Democrats didn’t try to play fast and loose with the truth – at least not on this issue. Also, SCDP chairman Dick Harpootlian’s firm provided the party with extensive legal assistance for free.