“Penny Tax” Scam: Meet The McBrides

POLITICAL INCEST ADDS ANOTHER LAYER OF INTRIGUE TO ELECTION SCANDAL Back in the early 1980s – the so-called “Golden Age of Porn” – there was a smut film about an incestuous family that went by the name “McBride.” Here in Richland County, S.C. we have our own politically incestuous group…


Back in the early 1980s – the so-called “Golden Age of Porn” – there was a smut film about an incestuous family that went by the name “McBride.”

Here in Richland County, S.C. we have our own politically incestuous group of McBrides – a corrupt family that’s doing unspeakable things to our tax dollars (while making a mockery of the democratic process).

For those of you who missed it, Election Day in Richland County, S.C. was an unmitigated disaster – with hundreds if not thousands of registered voters abandoning their quest to cast ballots due to unprecedented wait times at the polls.  What caused these delays?  An illegal shortage of voting machines – and an as-yet-unexplained series of voting machine malfunctions.

State law requires that precincts have one operational voting machine for every 250 registered voters – a mandate that was willfully ignored in Richland County on Election Day.  But why was this law ignored?  And why were the shortages and malfunctions confined almost exclusively to heavily Republican precincts?

Our sources have alleged that this shortage of operational voting machines was deliberate – part of a conspiracy on the part of county leaders to pass a $1.2 billion sales tax increase on Richland County voters.

“There was a coordinated effort by Richland County to suppress the vote in white precincts so that the tax increase could pass,” one source told us bluntly.

In 2010, a similar tax increase failed by just 600 votes.  But this year – with droves of white Republican voters fleeing long lines at their polling places – the measure easily passed.

These curiously selective voting irregularities have already prompted a lawsuit.

“Richland County voters waited as long as five or six hours to exercise their fundamental right to vote,”  according to the suit, which was filed oddly enough on behalf of S.C. Democratic Party executive director Amanda Loveday.  ”These long lines were attributed to an inadequate number of voting machines and a large number of voting machines that became inoperable while voting was occurring.”

The irregularities have also prompted calls for a new election from opponents of the tax hike.

“Since it is Richland County that made the decision to use too few voting machines, and since it’s now clear that long wait times deterred thousands of citizens from voting, Richland County should hold a valid election in accordance with the law,” said  Michael Letts, a leader of the ‘Vote No’ campaign. “To fail to do so would be a disservice to its citizens.”

Disservice?  Try disenfranchisement.

Anyway, at the heart of this scandal is the McBride family.

Its head?  Frank McBride – a former South Carolina lawmaker who pleaded guilty to selling his vote in 1991 as part of the infamous “Operation Lost Trust” scandal.

That’s right … McBride was at the heart of the biggest political scandal in South Carolina history (up to now).  A guy who was indicted and pleaded guilty to selling his vote.

His current job?  He’s a political hack pushing for the passage of the Richland County sales tax hike.

McBride is married to Jeannette McBride – Richland County’s Clerk of Court.  He’s also related to Lillian McBride – the embattled elections director for Richland County.

For those of you unfamiliar with the back story, Lillian McBride assumed her post in July 2011 – shortly after Richland County’s powerful legislative delegation forced out longtime elections director Mike Cinnamon.  Prior to his ouster, Cinnamon had spent three decades running fair, free and efficient elections in Richland County – although none of that mattered to local leaders.  Clearly the integrity of the democratic process took a back seat when it came to passing the sales tax hike – hence the hiring of McBride.

Seriously … this $1.2 billion heist has been in the works for the last two years, with local and state leaders like Columbia, S.C. Mayor Steven Benjamin and State Senators John Courson, Darrell Jackson and Joel Lourie (whose brother-in-law also has a job with the Richland County election commission) all supporting Lillian McBride’s ascension to this post.

So how close was ex-con Frank McBride to the disputed vote?

“He was in the room when the absentee boxes and ballots were opened late Tuesday night,” one of our sources says.

My … how cozy.

Not surprisingly, the liberal mainstream media in Columbia, S.C. doesn’t think any of this warrants a new election – just local government “pledging to make a change.”

“We have voters and candidates questioning the legitimacy of the election – mostly folks on the losing side, of course – with some people suggesting a revote,” writes Warren Bolton of The (Columbia, S.C.) State newspaper.  “While I understand their frustrations, a revote is not only impractical, but there’s no legal or logical basis for one. We’ve got the results, though delayed. Let’s move on and deal with the real issue at hand: What happened, and how do we make sure it doesn’t happen again?”


Pay no attention to that $1.2 billion that government just stole in a rigged election.

Whatever your position was on the sales tax hike – and obviously we opposed it – what happened in Richland County this week is one of the most shameful and corrupt things we have ever witnessed (and we live in a state that’s known for its shameful corruption).

If it wasn’t already painfully clear, this mess proves conclusively that South Carolina has devolved into a banana republic, where even the integrity of our electoral process has fallen under the thumb of the big government tax-and-spenders (who, oh by the way, spent $50,000 of public money on a promotional campaign in support of this tax increase).

This is America, people … this isn’t Haiti.  We have free elections in this county … government doesn’t get to use tax dollars for propaganda and then illegally suppress electoral turnout of specific demographics in an effort to feed its insatiable appetite for boondoggling.  Seriously what’s next?  Is Richland County government going to start sending the Tonton Macoutes after anyone who has the audacity to opposed yet another job-killing tax hike?

Because make no mistake … if taxpayer-funded propaganda and rigged elections in support of glorified thievery is going to be Richland County’s preferred method of doing business, we just might start a Tonton Macoute of our own.


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M Holder November 9, 2012 at 9:31 am

“(and making a mockery of democracy in the process).” The…United…States…is…NOT…a…democracy! It is a republic, big difference!

fitsnews Author November 9, 2012 at 9:33 am

This was – or should have been – a referendum. It was – or should have been – a democratic vote on a single issue.


Ol'Rufus November 9, 2012 at 10:46 am

Score one for Fits!

SCMinority November 11, 2012 at 7:38 am

She isn’t part of that McBride family. She has been quoted saying just that. Wrong family…Sic you may want to update this story.

Treble Bark November 9, 2012 at 9:38 am

Kudos Will, very-well put. Unfortunately, a majority of citizens are so uninformed about how the wool is being pulled over their eyes. I am thankful that you have the intestinal fortitude to connect the dots and expose the wickedness that is going on in high places today. We must remember that they will be held accountable one day. Papa Doc and Baby Doc would appreciate the reference to Tonton Macoutes.

Ron Swanson November 9, 2012 at 9:44 am

Nice reference! I toast you with a flank steak.

Brigid November 9, 2012 at 12:30 pm

Tonton Macoutes–there will be jokes flying all weekend now around my house. Can’t even mention them or you’ll be hearing about it for days. As to the election, these people need some jail time in a federal penitentiary. Every last one of them, and then barred from holding any public office or working for any municipal or state job. I want to see them lose their jobs and their fat paychecks, let them work honestly for a living like everyone else. Or let them sit in poverty and repossession and foreclosure. Normally I wouldn’t wish that on anyone, but in this special case, I want to see them suffer for the rest of their lives. They have already destroyed their reputations all by themselves. Just garbage people, absolute trash.

Ron Swanson November 9, 2012 at 9:41 am

“This is America, people … this isn’t Haiti.”

One can always dream though.

sweepin November 9, 2012 at 9:57 am

So is this going to be the next dead horse you beat on? Gotta keeps those hits coming. I’m in business, too, so I understand the need for revenue.

Is your basic premise that because it lost by 600 votes in 2010 that it could not have passed in 2012? Did you happen to notice how out of touch you Tea Bagger friends were in your petition choices and your endorsements? What makes you think you have this grasped the dynamics of this issue any more accurately?

Did the conspiracy cost Joan Brady the election, but allow Finlay to win? Did it guarantee Courson his win? I’m just curious as to what results would indicate the intracacies and depth of the conspiracy. Was it a brilliant plan, or just dumb luck?

An inquiring mind wants to know. Perhaps others are similarly intrigued.

For the record….I voted against the penny tax. I’m a White Anglo Saxon Protestant whose ancestors arrived here in 1689. Like my ancestors, I usually recognize bullshit or at least smell it. Your piece suggests both visual and olfactory evidence of the same.

Howie Koch for president November 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm

The amount of tinfoil being worn on this topic just drove Alcoas stock through the roof.

BTW..if this is a liberal conspiracy..then howcome it is the Democratic Party that is suing, and not the Republican?

Why are the Republicans trying to STOP a recount..?

Y’all are getting your conspiracies confused. You need to get together and decide just which conspiracy you are opposing and work together.

sweepin November 9, 2012 at 2:06 pm

Howie, you need to learn to read. Try my post again for effect.

Jump Back Jack November 11, 2012 at 12:33 am

The Dems sued to throw everyone off the scent, doofus, uh, er, Howie.

Try to keep up.

crackahasscrackah November 9, 2012 at 10:11 am

Why do you INSIST upon misspelling Frank McBribe’s name?

fitsnews Author November 9, 2012 at 10:26 am

HA! ;)

josephazar April 18, 2015 at 8:18 pm


Smirks November 9, 2012 at 10:37 am

A revote will result in a reduced turnout as not as many people will be motivated to return to the polls. I have a feeling that opponents of the penny tax know this and expect better odds to defeat the penny tax. Unless you have solid proof of it being compromised, you’re trading voters disenfranchised because they didn’t/couldn’t wait in line for voters disenfranchised because they don’t want to or can’t vote the second time around.

I really hate to say it, but honestly, with the greater turnout numbers, it is very likely that more people showed up who support the tax, and while all this shit sounds fishy, it isn’t evidence that the integrity of the vote was compromised. So he was in the room with the absentee ballots, and? Come on, you have to provide evidence that he actually did something.

The fact that the vote was so close last time says a ton of people want this tax already, and a piss-poor number of machines at various election posts across the county could have shaken loose voters on either side. I’m of the opinion that the “yes” vote simply turned out just enough to win, and that’s just a good showing of why not to live in Poorland county.

xx chromosome November 9, 2012 at 11:35 am

Frank McBride is a CONVICTED FELON. And the purpose of his being in the room as the absentee votes were counting was to ensure everything is done honestly. Why is this not in the REAL news? Nothing personal Mr. Fits…

Smirks November 9, 2012 at 11:45 am

He was in the room. By himself? Or were there plenty of other people too? Would it not be possible for those other people to see what he was doing? Would they not ring alarm bells? One of the sources told FITS this. Did he see the guy do anything suspicious?

For the record, I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have a revote at all, I’m saying that a revote should only occur if there is sufficient evidence that the results were compromised. By all means, do an investigation.

I’m just not kidding myself into thinking that the presence of a felon is required for a really dumb tax hike to be passed. You give Poorland county residents far too little credit.

Ron Swanson November 9, 2012 at 11:45 am

lol…that’s a little gem of a comment there xx. Truth be told though, it is no surprise that those in gov’t feel most comfortable working with felons.

Jump Back Jack November 11, 2012 at 12:39 am

Of COURSE there should be a farking revote.

But not until there has been a thorough housecleaning at the Rich. Co. Election Commission.

And it shouldn’t be a “special revote.”

It shouldn’t be voted on again until everyone is going to the polls again anyway.

Ain’t I smart? Why yes, I certainly am.

Lillian McBride needs to farking go. And she should be made to stand and shuffle for four or five hours the way to her car on her last day. In the cold.

Ol'Rufus November 9, 2012 at 11:03 am

Anyone know the politics of the idiot in charge of the Richland County Elections and Voter Registration Board? Her name is M. Elizabeth Crum, she’s a local attorney (problem number one). Based on her assocuiations I would assume that she is a Democrat/liberal.

Adell Adams, a member of the board is a Democrat based on her YouTube video.

Elaine Dubose?

Tina Herbert is another attorney and a Lib/Dem.

The last member of the “County Elections Cabal” is Allen Dowdy who apparently owns Dowdy Finnancial Services – the least publicized company on the internet.

xx chromosome November 9, 2012 at 1:19 pm

Her hairdo is that of a lesbian. So my guess is democrat.

5 and a half inches if I stretch it November 9, 2012 at 1:59 pm

There’s nothing wrong with lesbianism as long as I get to watch…

xx chromosome November 9, 2012 at 2:30 pm

@ By 5 and a half inches – Honey stop posting to Fits and get back to work. I’ll see you when you get home tonight.

Road Hog November 9, 2012 at 11:52 am

It amuses me to no end to hear Republicans cry “disenfranchisement”. Pot meet kettle.

Ol'Rufus November 9, 2012 at 11:57 am

Of course in this case it is real disenfranchisement vice theoretical disenfranchisement

IM November 9, 2012 at 12:10 pm

I like to give you the benefit of the doubt, but I have to call horseshit on this one. This was a case of gross incompetence. The people in charge of that elections office are too stupid to run a decent conspiracy. If they’d tried to fix the vote, they’d have effed it so bad it would have lost two-to-one.

Besides that, it’s a myth that the long lines were confined to white precincts. You been to Friarsgate lately? Non-whites make up 35-40% of the registered voters over there, and I’ve got a decidely non-white buddy over there who stood in line for 6 hours. Riverwalk – another place with long lines – is 40% non-white. Sandlapper – 70% non-white.

Conversely, I live in the most lilly white precinct in the whole damn county. There are supposedly 90 non-white voters in my precinct, but I’ve never seen them. The total wait at lunch time was about 30 minutes. I heard Ballentine had some long lines, but I’m firmly convinced that was mostly white people turning out because they think Barack Obama is about to send UN troops up Highway 76 to confiscate their huntin’ guns.

Jump Back Jack November 11, 2012 at 12:44 am

Don’t be a douchenozzle, they had to put the correct number of voting machines in a few “white precincts” in order to make it look like mere incompetence.

It was planned this way, just as FITS says.

jimlewis,owb November 9, 2012 at 1:54 pm

Will Frank McBride sleep soundly tonight? yep
Will Lillian McBride sleep soundly tonight? yep
Will Jeannette McBride sleep soundly tonight? yep
Will Mayor Benjamin sleep soundly tonight? yep
Will Senator Jackson sleep soundly tonight? yep
Will Senator Courson sleep soundly tonight? yep
Will Senator Lourie sleep soundly tonight? yep
Will all elected/appointed officials sleep soundly tonight, yep

These people, their kinfolk, their peers ain’t people. They are godamn cockroaches.

They have no soul, they have no morality, they have on ethics, they have no conscience.

They don’t care if they fuck white people, black people, yellow people, tall people, short people, fat people, skinny people or even that little green fucker who shills for GEICO on TV.

These cockroaches want their piece of the American Dream and if it means masturbating in the taxpayers’ coffee and calling it wonder milk then by damn they will do it.

Roadhouse Blues November 9, 2012 at 2:04 pm

Boss Hogg McBride wants your tax money.

Roadhouse Blues November 9, 2012 at 2:06 pm

SC is doomed.

Carolyn November 14, 2012 at 9:13 am

I don’t like Joel Lourie at all. Lourie is just like Haley. There are way too many negative words to describe Lourie to list them all here. Someone should look into his state email and I bet it would be very interesting. Or would he do like Haley and call into play his privacy because he’s an elected official? You betcha! Makes one pause. I wouldn’t be surprised if Fits found some of the things he’s being writing about with legislators demanding decisions to be reversed or preferential treatment among some State agencies. Lourie is self-serving and defines SCANK in my opinion!

Roadhouse Blues November 9, 2012 at 2:06 pm

USSA is doomed.

Knott November 9, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Lillian McBride – $86,394 salary for just running an election every two years.

Jeanette McBride – $101,435 salary for clerk of the court

xx chromosome November 9, 2012 at 2:26 pm

How many employees does Miss Lillian have at her Election Commission? And what are their salaries? And what DO they do all day at work – facebook, clip their nails, read Fits…

Peter O November 9, 2012 at 2:33 pm

That lawsuit by Loveday wasn’t filed “oddly enough,” it was filed because her boy Joe McCulloch lost in a close race to Kirkman Finlay. Ironically, the state Dems may be sabotaging this conspiracy by Columbia Dems.

JoeBob November 9, 2012 at 3:02 pm

That’s interesting Will but I don’t see a shred of evidence laid on the table, just “this person and that person and the other person” crap. Kind of like the Strom problem and Haley allegations. We won’t hold our breath waiting for facts.

Jump Back Jack November 11, 2012 at 12:47 am

JoeBob, you need to have your sense of smell checked. This stinks.

There will be evidence. No one needs to hold their breath.

You might want to put a tight clamp on your wallet if you live in Rich. Co., though.

Johnson November 9, 2012 at 7:45 pm

Dick Harpo and Liz Crum are two of Toal’s closest allies, confidants and friends. You can take that to the Bank. They all knew and know the McBride family could be bought a any piece of gold. Crum should resign as should Lillian McBride, but it’s not going to happen. The delay is to find a sure fire way to get McCullough elected. The penny tax is in and over.

xx chromosome November 9, 2012 at 8:16 pm

Yep.I still can’t believe Ms. Crum went on WLTX TV yesterday TOTALLY uninformed. “I don’t know, but I will find out,” were her answers. Why should she be prepared, after all, this is South Carolina. Just get an appointed position (along w/ the liscense plate that indicates you are a Commission member) and then just rise up to the top (aspiring Supreme Court in her case). Ms. Crum, bless her heart, is just an appointed chairmen, not a paid employee of the Election Commission. Ms. Lillian McBride, on the other hand, is a PAID employee of the Election Commission. Would SOMEBODY please fire her?!

Lois November 9, 2012 at 9:23 pm

I have known Liz for 35 years. She is a shrewd political operative and knows what she is saying at all times – even after a few drinks at Nightcaps with you know who. She can play the role of being uninformed, but I don’t buy it for one minute. I would love to see her cell phone logs to see just how many calls were made to JT’s private cell phone in the past few days.

xx chromosome November 9, 2012 at 9:48 pm

Lois – bless your heart – Miss Liz Crum may be a drinking pal of yours but we lowly masses are NOT impressed w/ her. Playing the dumb Southern Belle is not working for her.

Lois November 9, 2012 at 10:06 pm

My point exactly.

xx chromosome November 9, 2012 at 8:18 pm

Ms. Liz Crum actually stated that Ms. Lillian McBride may simply be overwhelmed. If a man had said that it would be considered sexist.

Richie Riche November 9, 2012 at 8:33 pm

It is easy for the affluent to avoid sales tax. The poor blacks and hispanics just voted themselves a 12 % sales tax increase. So white property tax won’t be tapped for these projects.

Teddy November 9, 2012 at 8:37 pm

It is actually a 14.2% sales tax increase…. I am not sure why people are so surprised! After all, just look at the people running the show? Serioulsy, do you really think the nigs will let an election get between them and $1.2 billion in slop.

PJ November 9, 2012 at 9:59 pm

Back at you cockroach!

Johnson November 9, 2012 at 10:10 pm

James Smith: In two years when you are running all over the state touting your pal Vincent Sheheen’s candidacy, you will be asked to respond to the question of how could you have not have known how inept, incompetent and corrupt the McBride family is? You and your legislative delegation are the ones who keep Joe Strickland in the Master’s office also. Don’t insult anyone’s intelligence by saying you don’t know how incompetent he is.

PJ November 9, 2012 at 10:27 pm

God bless all of you racist uninformed ignorant people. Power to the people! If I was Frank McBride I would be laughing at all of you bloggers, check your information, you got it wrong. Congratulations to the McBride’s, you are being talked about by people you don’t know! You should be proud that you are thought of by people who are no where near your thought process. Now let’s get to the rest of the issue. Congratulations to our wonderful, intelligent, honest, and caring President!!! LOL President Obama!

Jump Back Jack November 11, 2012 at 12:51 am

No one knows what the fark you’re trying to say, so you just wasted your time typing that.

PJ November 9, 2012 at 10:31 pm

PS, may the buses ride on! If you need a dollar tax, I am for it because I am blessed!

Jump Back Jack November 11, 2012 at 12:53 am

So you’re just one of those idiots that thinks it’s ALL ABOUT YOU.

Newsflash: It’s not all about you.

Kurt Vonnegut November 10, 2012 at 6:45 pm

Not only is the family a pack of incompetents, but they have lived most of their lives on the public dole. And yet supposedly responsible politicians continue to put these people in positions of authority. It isn’t race. There are just as many white incompetents in government as there are black. But the few honest, intelligent, responsible members of Richland County Council have been voted out. So get ready for more theft, cronyism and misfeasance. That’s what happens when you vote the straight ticket for either party. The best people lose, and the voters then get fleeced.

Welcome to the monkey house.

xx chromosome November 10, 2012 at 7:34 pm

Welcome to SC Politics. The McBrides are a perfect example of how pp get authority based on their family heritage rather than metit.

xx chromosome November 10, 2012 at 8:15 pm


Johnson November 11, 2012 at 11:21 am

The McBrides have merit. They can deliver a large number of black votes on command and for a modest price. The same way EW Cromatie did for Bob Coble. It’s not that complicated. The McBrides have a commodity – lots of unquestioned black votes and the Democratic party elite has money.

Judy Chop November 11, 2012 at 12:07 pm

Bible Way Church
Nazarine Baptist Church
Brookland Baptist Church

Just these three historically black churches in Columbia have a total combined membership in excess of 15,000 people. Three preachers tell all of these people it is God’s will to vote for so and so and 98% will deliver. They have voter registration drives and are extremely active in the community. Most are good hard working people and can deliver votes or money.

Throw in the other historically black church votes and they can nominate anyone they desire. Dog Catcher, School Board Member, City Council, Mayor it doesn’t matter. Our fathers’s sins are now being forgiven. It is their turn, now. Reconstruction Part II.

xx chromosome November 11, 2012 at 10:40 pm

Hate to admit it but I actually overheard a conversation between Bob Coble and an associate on how to “get the black Vote”. This was over 20 yrs. ago. If I were black, I would be insulted.

Johnson November 12, 2012 at 9:41 am

Ad your friend Bob, whored himself out for 20 years to get that “black vote.” “They” own him. Pathetic.

Been There November 13, 2012 at 5:18 am

In the 90’s the police in the Eau Claire area used to be real familiar with Frank McBride’s kids, a boy and a girl. They were involved in anything illegal you could imagine. How does this trash get to hold high paying jobs that are paid for with our money?

badtoworse November 13, 2012 at 7:38 am

No wonder the push for certain demographics to vote “early”.The riggers new the fix would be in on election day.

chris November 13, 2012 at 10:22 am

“And why were the shortages and malfunctions confined almost exclusively to heavily Republican precincts?”

Do you have any support for this contention? I am in a predominantly Democrat precinct, and waited over 3 and a half hours. I also heard of similar wait times from friends in like precincts.

PJ November 13, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Jump Back Jack, I would not expect someone with a third grade mentality to understand. The bottom line is, people waste their time reading all of this trash you racist people are writing. Get over it! Get a drink of water and stop smoking your pipe. You are delusional Buddy!

Jump Back Jack November 16, 2012 at 3:14 am

Dude, don’t shoot the messenger.

You’re the one who said, “If you need a dollar tax, I am for it because I am blessed!”

Nobody cares what YOU’RE for because you’re blessed.

You’re just like a lot of liberals who don’t care about those for whom more taxes makes their life more difficult.

So, take your cute third grade education comment and realize you just had your ass handed to you, because IT’S *NOT* ALL ABOUT YOU.


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