South Carolina Is The Least Corrupt State?

We were shocked … shocked, we say … when a reader tweeted us a story about South Carolina’s standing on a new national assessment of the most corrupt states in America. According to the ranking, South Carolina is … wait for it … the least corrupt state in America. And yes,…

We were shocked … shocked, we say … when a reader tweeted us a story about South Carolina’s standing on a new national assessment of the most corrupt states in America. According to the ranking, South Carolina is … wait for it … the least corrupt state in America.

And yes, you’re forgiven if you need to take a moment to wipe down your computer monitor.

Compiled by Rob Wile of Business Insider, the rankings are tabulated based on the number of public corruption convictions per 100,000 residents. Wait … convictions?

THAT explains it … see in South Carolina, elected officials are rarely if ever held accountable for their corruption.

Our governor (Nikki Haley) has been busted repeatedly on numerous ethics violations – yet her former colleagues in the S.C. House of Representatives cleared her of any wrongdoing. Meanwhile our state’s top budget writer (Brian White) was caught red-handed using campaign resources on personal items – yet two years later no public hearing has been held. Over in the S.C. Senate the same is true of its leader (John Courson), who like the governor shamelessly appointed his family members to taxpayer-funded positions. Then there’s the Senate’s top budget writer (Hugh Leatherman), who refuses to disclose the money he’s making off of state transportation contracts.

And of course there’s the ongoing campaign finance investigation of S.C. House Speaker Bobby Harrell – arguably the most powerful politician in the state.

Hmmmmm … based on the examples listed above, does anybody care to guess how that’s going to end?

Of course South Carolina has one of the lowest public corruption conviction rates in America: Our state tolerates corruption among public officials.

Thus the lunacy of passing “ethics reform.” Like S.C. Treasurer Curtis Loftis has said … there’s no point passing new ethics laws if lawmakers aren’t going to follow the ones already on the books.


Pic: Travis Bell Photography

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not in the ring September 3, 2013 at 8:12 pm

I did have to wipe down my monitor..The spit take after reading the headline was impressive…I also began screaming at my poor monitor and then I realized the criteria was convictions and yes that explains everything…sorry monitor…next time I’ll read the whole story first

Scooter September 3, 2013 at 8:38 pm

So, you have been lying all this time.

Vanguard16 September 3, 2013 at 8:44 pm

Hahahha!! You got Nikki Haley, Bobby Harrell, Alan Wilson, Jake Knotts, James Metts, Mark Sanfraud, Henry McMaster, Jean Toal…………..

Edgar September 3, 2013 at 9:05 pm

There is no one more corrupt and power addicted than JeanToal. Remember, Vinny. We are watching your support on this one.

Centrist View September 3, 2013 at 9:37 pm

Justice Dept. report that data was pulled from.

If looks like the data is for Federal prosecutions only. It does not appear to include prosecutions by state law enforcement agencies.

If you are considering corruption by public officials, a better measure would be to report both the indictment rate and conviction rate per 100 or 1000 PUBLIC OFFICIALS instead of convictions per 100,000 population.

CASH2 September 3, 2013 at 9:44 pm

Corrupt states do not arrest their corrupt leaders. The report tells the truth about the number of arrest.
It does not tell the truth about the level of corruption.

Someone that knows September 3, 2013 at 9:41 pm

I am an insider and know where the bodies are buried. Even though this is an anonymous post, but perhaps you will believe me anyway.

People have no idea how much money is raked away from the purposes intended and into the pockets of the elite. Stop looking at the little stuff. The action is at the top end. The money that is “protected” by special agreements written by highly paid lawyers. It has been this way for the almost 30 years I have been in state government and I think it will be like this on the day I retire.

No one will ever go to jail. The bad actors control the funding to the investigative agencies thus they control those agencies. It is the safest, most lucrative business in SC.

Miles September 3, 2013 at 10:03 pm

A powerful man once told me that the “Brown insurance scandal” (where a no bid contract allowed a family business to pocket a couple of million per year) was chickenfeed to the truly connected. I believed him then and still do now.

I can’t remember the last time state authorities threw any high official in jail. Was it lost trust?

Elliott September 3, 2013 at 10:22 pm

The Dems should spend their money on independent investigations of these crooks in State Government and then jam it down the Governor’s throat. But they won’t because they are as corrupt as the GOP.

Smirks September 4, 2013 at 5:40 am

I imagine the legislature as one big Mexican standoff, so no one is likely to rock the boat.

Jesus H. Christ! September 4, 2013 at 6:18 pm

It would be helpful if you could give some specifics.

House Members Go 2 Jail September 4, 2013 at 10:19 pm

Seen the inside. Know people on the inside. It is just as you say.

dave September 4, 2013 at 10:55 pm

But is it a “business?” I would argue it’s less business than black market. And I agree with you, and would add – there are even those that are “innocent” that are just as dirty. The innocent talk about the corrupt like they are criminals, all the while grabbing money out of the same pockets the corrupt are and justifying it as resetting the moral compass. This state is headed down a bad ‘crik and ain’t got a paddle to push with.

not surprised September 9, 2013 at 11:51 pm

presumably you work in the senate finance committee, house ways and means committee or in the state whorehouse — b&cb

anonymosly . . . just between us two girls . . . who are the top five crooks?

? September 3, 2013 at 9:55 pm

More proof that statistics don’t lie, but liars use statistics.

In this case, it’s probably just stupidity…but just sayin’.

Pissed off September 3, 2013 at 10:31 pm

Loftis is correct. We have lots of laws but no one with the backbone to enforce them.

Cecil September 3, 2013 at 11:16 pm

I don’t know about being the least corrupt state, but the fact that they want to elect nitwits like Bright, Mace and Cash certainly prove it is the dumbest.

9" September 4, 2013 at 5:21 am

I got involved in some corruption one time,and it felt really good.Joe loved it,too.

Smirks September 4, 2013 at 5:37 am

We are the Sgt. Schultz of corruption. I see nothing!

Bozo September 4, 2013 at 7:37 am

Official Statement of Attorney’s General of SC:

Ain’t nobody know nuttin about no corruption. No sir, nobody done nuttin wrong round here.
Signed by,

AG Alan Wilson.
AG Henry McMaster
AG Charlie Condon
AG Travis Medlock

Polyphemos September 4, 2013 at 12:45 pm

I thought The Onion was a comedy site using sarcasm and “faux news” stories as a technique of humor.

Gregory Geddings September 4, 2013 at 3:44 pm

Never really got a chance to respond fully to your comment a few days ago. To refresh your mind here is what you said:

“You were way too nice to Geddings. He is pompous know-nothing, whose finest effort is his public masturbation on this blog. I know, I know, it looks like a penis, only smaller.”

Ironic that you should choose the moniker Polyphemos. This was one of the cyclopses on an island where Odysseus landed as he journeyed back from the Trojan war.

Either way I think that it’s quite appropriate that you chose the ID of a quite stupid and gullible cave dweller who passed out drunk and gets his one and only eye poked out with a sharp, burning stick.

Score one for Odysseus and a loud huzzah for public masturbation!

A final thought: If you spent less time reading Will Folks and listening to Rush and more time reading the likes of Dorothy Parker and Mark Twain you might become the great “teacher” which you laughably claim to be. You might even learn the fine art of repartee on an adult level and leave the 8th grade “humor” behind.

Gregory Geddings September 5, 2013 at 7:00 am

I really didn’t expect you to reply to this. That’s a good thing. When you got nothing it’s best to keep quiet.

Philip Branton September 4, 2013 at 5:03 pm

You mean that you were SHOCKED by a tweet..?

Well, Mr. Folks, have you read this story…

“…..“We can’t have people swooping in to read one article,” he said, adding that the paper should not be seeking to bolster hits from such one-time casual readers. “What you can’t do is go for the lowest common denominator, because then what you have is mediocrity.”

He repeatedly said that the success of The Post depends on its ability to draw readers into a “daily ritual habit” of reading across a collection of different topics — and paying for it. “People will buy a package,” Bezos said, “they will not pay for a story.”…”

Mr. Folks, we highly wonder what your intel thought would love to say to Jeff Bezos..!!

There is a great line that goes…”Ask not what your country can do for you…ASK what you can do for your country..!”

Maybe you can whisper to Jeff….”Ask not what your readers will pay for your news…ASK how will our news pay our readers to read..!!”

Mr. Folks would you give Mr. Bezos a swift kick…and pay me for each kick you deliver..?

We are FED …UP..!!

somebody from SC September 4, 2013 at 8:16 pm

Damn, why is everybody pickin’ on South Carolina? I too was shocked and confused, but there is no need to get angry.

The People Are Coming! September 4, 2013 at 10:17 pm

No Convictions equates to corrupt government system not bringing charges against those in government who are corrupt. So with that said, this report is simply ludicrous. Everybody in South Carolina knows that the Good Old Boy system protects itself. Take people like Bobby Harrell. Over half the citizens of the state want that narcissistic psychopath pos sob to rot in prison with his pretentious friends. Yes sir – the peasants will be gathering their pitchforks soon, I say. They want heads. And these corrupt fools are outnumber 25,000 to 1.

dave September 4, 2013 at 10:50 pm

That’s awesome!! I guess SC is also the wealthiest state – if you don’t look at ppp, or gnp/gdp, or average income per capita…. or any of those other pesky measurements that would actually be an indicator that it is NOT the wealthiest state. Why look at reality when you can just ignore it and make whatever cock-a-mamey bs statement you want?

I believe SC is also the bellwether state on economic reform and socioeconomic stability. Why not – I said it so it must be true.
OH – South Carolina has the lowest unemployment rate in North America. Let’s go for broke (no pun intended)!

vic September 5, 2013 at 6:26 am

White collar crime and cronyism in state government has created some of the wealthiest families in this state. They control the politicians by political donations. Politicians, by definition, are weak minded and will do anything for a check.


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