SC

SC Supreme Court Clears Nikki Haley

The S.C. Supreme Court has affirmed a lower court ruling that paved the way for a legislative whitewash of serious ethics charges against S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley – effectively ending the case against the Palmetto State’s corrupt chief executive. This week, the court unanimously upheld the lower court’s decision to…

The S.C. Supreme Court has affirmed a lower court ruling that paved the way for a legislative whitewash of serious ethics charges against S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley – effectively ending the case against the Palmetto State’s corrupt chief executive.

This week, the court unanimously upheld the lower court’s decision to throw the Haley case to the notoriously corrupt S.C. House ethics committee – which conducted a show trial last summer that “vindicated” Haley. According to the Supreme Court, the results of the legislature’s sham hearing will stand.

“The South Carolina Constitution and this Court have expressly recognized and respected the Legislature’s authority over the conduct of its own members,” S.C. chief justice Jean Toal wrote in issuing the court’s majority opinion, adding that “ethics investigations concerning members and staff of the Legislature are intended to be solely within the Legislature’s purview.”

Haley was accused of multiple abuses of power during her six years as a member of the S.C. House of Representatives from 2005-2011. Specifically, she was accused of illegally lobbying on behalf of Lexington Medical Center, her former employer from 2008-10. She was also been accused of illegally lobbying on behalf of Wilbur Smith Associates – an engineering firm with extensive business before the state – and failing to report $42,500 in income received from the company between 2007-09.

The governor has repeatedly denied all allegations of wrongdoing – although in this case there was at least one smoking gun attesting to her guilt.

Despite the abundance of evidence against Haley, the ethics committee nonetheless voted last June to dismiss all of the charges against her. This decision was based exclusively on testimony from the governor and sympathetic witnesses – and was reached without a public examination of the evidence (including evidence sought by the committee).

Haley’s accuser John Rainey, a prominent GOP fundraiser, was never allowed to present his case to the committee. Instead he was sequestered in a private room – unable to even listen as the governor called him a racist for daring to raise questions about her transparent lawlessness.

Not only that, Haley repeatedly threatened the “Republicans” charged with investigating her crimes with political retribution if they went against her.

Here’s the thing about this ruling, though: As much as we can’t stand the S.C. Supreme Court – and its frequent tolerance of corruption – the justices had very little latitude to decide this case any differently than they did. Until state lawmakers abolish their corrupt self-policing practice, this “fox guards henhouse” arrangement is state law – making it very hard for the courts to overturn legislative decisions.

In fact, one of the main reasons this website blasted a recently defeated ethics bill was its failure to abolish these corrupt “cover-up” committees.

Until a clear and unambiguous line of accountability for lawlessness on the part of public officials is established and enforced, South Carolina’s elected officials will continue to engage in widespread corruption – and continue to get away with it like Haley did.

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50 comments

A face in the crowd June 12, 2013 at 12:22 pm

If South Carolina was a nation, it would be declared a failed state.

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Elfego June 12, 2013 at 1:12 pm

No more than the rest of the USA!

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A face in the crowd June 12, 2013 at 1:39 pm

Really? Among governors, I believe Illinois sent George Ryan and Rod Blagojevich to prison, and New York accepted the resignation of prostitute-friendly Eliot Spitzer. Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick was found guilty on 24 of 30 counts of corruption, and a federal grand jury indicted New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin on 21 counts of money laundering, bribery and other crimes. Just to name a few.

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A face in the crowd June 12, 2013 at 1:41 pm

In other words, they prosecute people.

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Elfego June 12, 2013 at 4:46 pm

Out of how many elected officials?

A face in the crowd June 12, 2013 at 12:22 pm

If South Carolina was a nation, it would be declared a failed state.

Reply
Elfego June 12, 2013 at 1:12 pm

No more than the rest of the USA!

Reply
A face in the crowd June 12, 2013 at 1:39 pm

Really? Among governors, I believe Illinois sent George Ryan and Rod Blagojevich to prison, and New York accepted the resignation of prostitute-friendly Eliot Spitzer. Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick was found guilty on 24 of 30 counts of corruption, and a federal grand jury indicted New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin on 21 counts of money laundering, bribery and other crimes. Just to name a few.

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A face in the crowd June 12, 2013 at 1:41 pm

In other words, they prosecute people.

Reply
Elfego June 12, 2013 at 4:46 pm

Out of how many elected officials?

Fruit of the Loom June 12, 2013 at 12:30 pm

The old, ‘You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours”!
Or in the case of these poloticos, You show me yours and I’ll show you mine, then we rub them together.
Toal’s payoff .

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Fruit of the Loom June 12, 2013 at 12:30 pm

The old, ‘You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours”!
Or in the case of these poloticos, You show me yours and I’ll show you mine, then we rub them together.
Toal’s payoff .

Reply
? June 12, 2013 at 12:32 pm

Is anyone ever surprised when you take any gov’t to court that those same courts that are part of said gov’t find the gov’t “not guilty”?

Seriously, this actually surprises people?

The surprise should be on the rare occasions where the opposite happens. Or even more surprising, instead of some “fine” being paid(by the taxpayers of course), some gov’t mule actually losing their job as a result.

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Curious June 12, 2013 at 1:53 pm

Totally on point. It’s the exceptions to this rule that make news.

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Simple Simon June 12, 2013 at 3:26 pm

Why ahould anyone be “surprised?”Fits is right.The ruling is consistent with the present law in SC.You arent advocating the Court usurp the legislative function,are you?

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? June 13, 2013 at 11:08 am

I have no idea how you would come up with the notion I support courts over legislature, or even care either way.

I just made an observation, nothing more.

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? June 12, 2013 at 12:32 pm

Is anyone ever surprised when you take any gov’t to court that those same courts that are part of said gov’t find the gov’t “not guilty”?

Seriously, this actually surprises people?

The surprise should be on the rare occasions where the opposite happens. Or even more surprising, instead of some “fine” being paid(by the taxpayers of course), some gov’t mule actually losing their job as a result.

Reply
Curious June 12, 2013 at 1:53 pm

Totally on point. It’s the exceptions to this rule that make news.

Reply
Simple Simon June 12, 2013 at 3:26 pm

Why ahould anyone be “surprised?”Fits is right.The ruling is consistent with the present law in SC.You arent advocating the Court usurp the legislative function,are you?

Reply
? June 13, 2013 at 11:08 am

I have no idea how you would come up with the notion I support courts over legislature, or even care either way.

I just made an observation, nothing more.

Reply
Thomas June 12, 2013 at 12:35 pm

Hoo-Ray!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Thomas June 12, 2013 at 12:35 pm

Hoo-Ray!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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lowcorider June 12, 2013 at 12:51 pm

Shock face.

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Lowcorider June 12, 2013 at 12:51 pm

Shock face.

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Pappy ODaniel June 12, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Will-the City Paper called you out. See page 10 in this weeks ed.

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CNSYD June 13, 2013 at 9:07 am

Don’t wait up looking for a response from Sic Willie.

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Pappy ODaniel June 12, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Will-the City Paper called you out. See page 10 in this weeks ed.

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CNSYD June 13, 2013 at 9:07 am

Don’t wait up looking for a response from Sic Willie.

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Marie Harrison June 12, 2013 at 3:22 pm

Nimrata may have gotten one over on the supreme court, but there’s always the IRS

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Marie Harrison June 12, 2013 at 3:22 pm

Nimrata may have gotten one over on the supreme court, but there’s always the IRS

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Jim June 12, 2013 at 4:44 pm

So our elected officials can throw stones since SC is bottom of list on just about everything.

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OK June 12, 2013 at 4:44 pm

So our elected officials can throw stones since SC is bottom of list on just about everything.

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Invisible Hired Hand June 12, 2013 at 9:29 pm

Based upon information and belief, Queen Jean Toal is more nervous about the investigations into her corrupt attorney and judicial discipline systems that previously reported. Her systems are as corrupt – probably more so – than/as the ones in the legislature, so she could not dare rule anything against theirs. The continous puzzle remains is why Costa and Kaye continue to bow to her when she has so severely screwed them both? Kittredge and Beatty are too dumb to be a problem to her. They continue drink her cool-aid.(Need another pill, John? For your back, of course.) Hmmmm.

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Lobbyist #1 June 12, 2013 at 10:35 pm

Certain Senators and legislators have Toal’s number and figured out her agenda. It’s a matter of time. There are a few idiots like Lourie and James Smith left, but they will soon learn it will only hurt them to follow their Master.

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Invisible Hired Hand June 12, 2013 at 9:29 pm

Based upon information and belief, Queen Jean Toal is more nervous about the investigations into her corrupt attorney and judicial discipline systems that previously reported. Her systems are as corrupt – probably more so – than/as the ones in the legislature, so she could not dare rule anything against theirs. The continous puzzle remains is why Costa and Kaye continue to bow to her when she has so severely screwed them both? Kittredge and Beatty are too dumb to be a problem to her. They continue drink her cool-aid.(Need another pill, John? For your back, of course.) Hmmmm.

Reply
Lobbyist #1 June 12, 2013 at 10:35 pm

Certain Senators and legislators have Toal’s number and figured out her agenda. It’s a matter of time. There are a few idiots like Lourie and James Smith left, but they will soon learn it will only hurt them to follow their Master.

Reply
Eagle Scout June 12, 2013 at 10:11 pm

Sorry, Glenn.

You’ll have to keep working on re-election or else buying out Jean Toal for her seat.

And staff says she isn’t looking to retire anytime soon.

Supposedly you’ll have to campaign against a heterosexual to keep your position.

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Muffin June 12, 2013 at 10:51 pm

What is McConnell’s position — doggie, missionary, 69, gay kama sutra?

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Kuyperdog June 13, 2013 at 2:03 am

Glenn McConnell is one of the most honorable politicians in SC-

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Eagle Scout June 12, 2013 at 10:11 pm

Sorry, Glenn.

You’ll have to keep working on re-election or else buying out Jean Toal for her seat.

And staff says she isn’t looking to retire anytime soon.

Supposedly you’ll have to campaign against a heterosexual to keep your position.

Reply
Muffin June 12, 2013 at 10:51 pm

What is McConnell’s position — doggie, missionary, 69, gay kama sutra?

Reply
Kuyperdog June 13, 2013 at 2:03 am

Glenn McConnell is one of the most honorable politicians in SC-

Reply
nitrat June 13, 2013 at 1:25 pm

I’m not a lawyer and don’t know the details of any laws that Haley might have violated.
But, is the court saying that if a legislator breaks ethics or other LAWS and the legislature’s ethics committees decide to whitewash that the law breaking is just ignored?
That there is no other recourse to bring the legislator to justice for their crime?
That no one can take action against the ethics committee members, who by virtue of whitewashing, become co-conspirators in crimes?
Something is real wrong there, bubba.

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nitrat June 13, 2013 at 1:25 pm

I’m not a lawyer and don’t know the details of any laws that Haley might have violated.
But, is the court saying that if a legislator breaks ethics or other LAWS and the legislature’s ethics committees decide to whitewash that the law breaking is just ignored?
That there is no other recourse to bring the legislator to justice for their crime?
That no one can take action against the ethics committee members, who by virtue of whitewashing, become co-conspirators in crimes?
Something is real wrong there, bubba.

Reply
Maggie Mae June 15, 2013 at 4:13 pm

NIKKI HALEY WAS NOT CLEARED. The Supreme Court said that they would not hear the case as it -the Supreme Court – was the wrong venue for that case to be heard.

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Maggie Mae June 15, 2013 at 4:13 pm

NIKKI HALEY WAS NOT CLEARED. The Supreme Court said that they would not hear the case as it -the Supreme Court – was the wrong venue for that case to be heard.

Reply
gerald smith June 19, 2013 at 11:53 am

To many parties in Columbia sc

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gerald smith June 19, 2013 at 11:53 am

To many parties in Columbia sc

Reply

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