SC

Letter: True Ethics Reform Requires Real Disclosure

RE: “DAVIS AND SHEHEEN: ETHICS BILL FAILED TO DELIVER“ Dear Editor, When you run for elected or appointed office in South Carolina, you are required to disclose the source of any contributions to the S.C. State Ethics Commission (SCSEC).  It seems a logical extension that once you are in office…

RE: “DAVIS AND SHEHEEN: ETHICS BILL FAILED TO DELIVER

Dear Editor,

When you run for elected or appointed office in South Carolina, you are required to disclose the source of any contributions to the S.C. State Ethics Commission (SCSEC).  It seems a logical extension that once you are in office – you should continue to disclose the source of any income or contributions, especially when the power of the office to vote on millions of dollars in taxpayer funds is far greater than an election campaign.

I believe true ethics reform should require the disclosure of all income sources of an elected or appointed official.

I also support an independent oversight board not just to investigate alleged wrongdoing, but to audit the annual ethics reports required of all elected/ appointed officials – perhaps on a random basis.

The basis for this already exists in at least one area, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board which was: “established by Congress to oversee the audits of public companies in order to protect the interests of investors and further the public interest.”

What could be more “public” than public office? Once you become an elected/ appointed official, your income sources are subject to public review, just like public corporations. The key is to protect the public interest and any elected or appointed official who does not like that concept should not be in office.

Sincerely,

Sarah Nuckles
S.C. Transportation Commissioner 2008-12

SIC SEZ

sic speaking

Sarah … I seriously love you.  You’re awesome.  When it comes to the promotion of true fiscal responsibility and real accountability in state government, you are one of only a few I know who has consistently walked the walk.  We need a thousand like you … and then a thousand more.  Thank you for sharing your thoughts on ethics reform with us – hopefully your advice will be heeded.  

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5 comments

Tom July 1, 2014 at 9:55 am

Such a rule would be worthless unless all PACs are also required to disclose their membership contributions. It is of no value to know that John Politician received $50,000 in campaign contributions from ABC PAC, unless you know that virtually all of the money in ABC PAC came from John Briber and affiliates of John Briber, who just happens to be pushing for the passage of legislation that is currently before John Politician’s committee. With that exception I wholeheartedly agree with this post.

Dark money is a cancer eating away at liberty.

Reply
TontoBubbaGoldstein July 1, 2014 at 10:44 am

Dark money is a cancer eating away at liberty.

Raciss.

Reply
Thomas July 1, 2014 at 1:25 pm

The MCCUTCHEON ET AL. v. FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION concluded aggregate limits are invalid under the First Amendment while preserving base contribution limits. PAC membership contributors and their base contributions they donate for any number of candidates does not rise to a quid quo pro corruption over the candidate or his office. Disclosure of individual contributor’s names opens up the real possibility for retaliation and threats against their protected political speech.

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Tom July 1, 2014 at 4:10 pm

Such nonsense. Paying money to a Super PAC is not protected political speech. Paying money to politicians or to support politicians is not protected political speech. Speech is speech.

Even if it were, who would threaten them? Why do people fear the light? Why do they feel the need to hide the money they are giving to politicians? Because this is nothing more than a way to pay money to politicians in exchange for favors. While it may not be legal quid pro quo, because we cannot prove it, only an idiot thinks a person gives a lot of money to a politician and expects nothing in return. This is de facto quid pro quo, and the only way to stop it is to expose it to light.

Finally if the concern is some people may not want to associate with people because of their political views or may not want to do business with them; There is nothing wrong with that. We have freedom of association in this nation as well. We have the right to associate with whom we please and do business with whom we please. The constitution does not guarantee you
your speech will not cause other people to dislike you

For example whether you agree with the Hobby Lobby decision or not, women who feel strongly on this issue have every right not to shop at Hobby Lobby. That is what freedom of association is not. Your constitutional right to free speech protects you from government action, not from action by individual who disagree with you. Not associating with you is also their way of expressing their protected political speech.

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