Attempted Bribery In SC Governor’s Race?

SOURCES: STEVE FRENCH OFFERED $30K TO DROP OUT OF RACE  Sources at multiple state agencies tell FITS they are investigating allegations of attempted bribery in the South Carolina governor’s race.  Specifically, the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED), S.C. Election Commission (SCEC) and S.C. State Ethics Commission (SCSEC) have received…


Sources at multiple state agencies tell FITS they are investigating allegations of attempted bribery in the South Carolina governor’s race.  Specifically, the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division (SLED), S.C. Election Commission (SCEC) and S.C. State Ethics Commission (SCSEC) have received a “credible tip” about an effort to induce Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Steve French to withdraw from the race.

The inducement? A $30,000 bribe …

French’s campaign was not immediately available for comment, but sources investigating the allegation tell FITS a caller identifying themselves as “Tom Hart” reached out to French campaign manager Colin Ross in the wake of a new poll showing incumbent “Republican” Nikki Haley in a dogfight with S.C. Sen. Vincent Sheheen.

The caller reportedly identified himself as a “conservative Republican,” and said he “appreciated where (French) was coming from” but that it was imperative not to “let the liberals take charge” in South Carolina.

To that end, our sources say, French and Ross were offered $15,000 apiece to scrap the former’s gubernatorial bid – specific amounts the caller is said to have “personally guarantee(d).”

The number used by the caller has since been disconnected.

According to our sources, Ross rejected the bribe, advised the caller of the illegality of such an offer and indicated his intention to report the matter to the appropriate authorities.

“(The French campaign) thinks this was probably someone playing a joke – but we take this sort of thing very seriously,” one law enforcement source told FITS. “They were right to report this.  Joke or no joke – a bribe to influence the outcome of an election is a serious matter.”

Hours before the bribe was allegedly offered, The (Charleston, S.C.) Post and Courier  published the results of a new poll showing Nikki Haley with a 13-point lead over Sheheen in a head-to-head race.  That lead shrinks to just four percent, though, in a race with French and self-styled “Independent Republican” Tom Ervin on the ballot.

French is a small businessman from the South Carolina Lowcountry.  He’s campaigning on a plan to grow the state’s economy via tax cuts and reductions in government spending (a.k.a. what “Republicans” are supposed to stand for).

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GrandTango July 23, 2014 at 11:39 am

Was Tom Hart wearing a Speedo, and had a hand stamp from a “Burlesque” Nudie bar?…

LMAO. FITS, you once had a shot. You have degenerated into pure – laughable – TRASH.

Oh yeah Check it out. GOP funding a lot of school choice. (I’ll have Disqus soon):

Sic is GT's bitch July 23, 2014 at 11:44 am

I really fucking hate you. I just can’t get over that Sic let’s you post adverts for free while you also shit all over his blog.

Sic is by far the biggest bitch in the world for allowing you to continue doing it.

urstupid July 23, 2014 at 11:55 am

get with it! GT is Sic. Sic is GT. same person. just expanding the brand. all the cable channels do it.

Will Folks aka Sic July 23, 2014 at 12:42 pm

I wish I had the kind of time GT has … as for his comments and his incessant linking, this is the marketplace of ideas. Such as it is …

Sic is GT's bitch July 23, 2014 at 2:25 pm

Just remember that this particular “marketplace” is yours, not his.

The staple component of any free market is the concept of private property. How many people would visit a shopping mall that allowed homeless people to shit in the corners of their mall?

Do you allow guests in your home to insult your wife? Everyone should have SOME boundaries when it comes to their property.

I can give you many more examples too.

You are certainly good when it comes allowing controversial opinions and comments and that is commendable and adds to your site. That doesn’t mean you have to be his punching bag or free online advertising provider however, nor should it mean that you allow people that could potentially hurt your business to do so.

Buz Martin July 23, 2014 at 12:49 pm

Not possible. “Grand Tango” aka “Big T” aka “Emily Peterkin” aka “T (Whatever)” (blog author) spends far too much time commenting on multiple newspaper sites, blogs, forums, etc., to put out a blog like FITSNews. I think that theory can be put to rest.

easterndumbfuckastan July 23, 2014 at 11:55 am

As much as 90% of the members of the community really dislike the GrandTango advertising fest for his blogging habit, I understand why Will allows it. Will has always said he’s all about the market place of ideas, to my knowledge he hasn’t banned anyone from the comments section here. If you support the market place of ideas then you support all the ideas, and let individuals sort out the good from the bad. I think we’ve all done that.

shifty henry July 23, 2014 at 12:43 pm

The GerbildoingtheTango is an easy target. Pointing the needle at him/her/them helps to keep my interest and intellect sharp. I was taught never to kick a man when he is down, but in GT’s case I don’t mind because he can’t get it up anyway ….

Sic is GT's bitch July 23, 2014 at 8:43 pm

“If you support the market place of ideas then you support all the ideas”

Yea, I really don’t. I support market places that support good ideas, not bad ones.

easterndumbfuckastan July 23, 2014 at 9:02 pm

That’s where sorting out the good from the bad comes from. While Will has the absolute right to censor anyone he want’s from his site, he has chosen to give all his content consumers free reign to discuss what they will. One of the last web outlets in this area that allows that. If he doesn’t want to use the banhammer sometimes you have to take the good with the bad.

shifty henry July 24, 2014 at 9:02 am

— although the photos and cartoon zaps are gone (sigh)

Lee Padgett July 23, 2014 at 12:23 pm

Can’t wait for you to get disqus soon. Maybe then you won’t be the only one posting on your blog. You might get some friends.. It is awfully lonely in that basement with your cheetos and mom yelling from upstairs. I feel your pain.

CorruptionInColumbia July 23, 2014 at 12:54 pm

Yeah but when she comes downstairs to “service” him, that’s when it gets “fun” for him.

The Colonel July 23, 2014 at 1:08 pm

That is a mental picture I did not need to see…

TontoBubbaGoldstein July 23, 2014 at 8:54 pm

(I’ll have Disqus soon)

You go, Boyee!!!

Fed Up July 23, 2014 at 11:48 am

Ervin is above reproach, smart, honest and a former Judge, so, I doubt seriously he would be involved.
Sheheen does not need the help, an attorney, honest and would not be that stupid.
Judging from the immature children running the Governor’s Office and how desperate they are, my money would be on the Haley camp.
Haley is a proven liar, as recent as yesterday caught in multiple lies.
Haley illegally destroyed emails.
Haley used staff phones to cover up her activities.
Haley lied about DOR breach.
Haley lied about DSS children’s murders and refused to fire Koller.
Haley replaced DHEC board to get a fund raiser in Georgia, against best interest of SC.
Haley used security detail and taxpayer funds to raise campaign funds.
Haley lied about her income from Exotica.
Haley sold herself to Wilbur Smith against Ethics rules.
Haley sold herself to Lex. County Med. Center and lied on application.
Haley lied about trip to China with Sanford.
Haley failed to disclose required info on ethics report.
Haley is alleged, I feel truthfully, about multiple affairs.
Haley is a proven liar, ethics violator and I feel law breaker. A bribe would be a logical move for her and just another questionable activity, easily acceptable in her lack of moral, ethical, and warped psychological estimation!

idiotwind July 23, 2014 at 11:57 am

well you put it kind of harshly (there are no saints in the race), but yeah most of this stuff is true. what’s bizarre is that she will be re-elected. isn’t that weird? what on earth is with us?

Bible Thumper July 23, 2014 at 12:18 pm

“Sheheen does not need the help.”
I suspect Fed Up called Colin Ross. Sheheen needs to hurt Haley politically to pick up his 4% deficit. Apparently by the polls helping third parties helps Sheheen. Why would Haley’s supporters do this when the article clearly indicates she is likely to win? Fed Up was quick with a response…

Jobs gone July 23, 2014 at 2:48 pm

Sealed Air just announced that they are moving most of their operations out of SC. Another dink in the jobs numbers that will go unnoticed by our Gubna

Bible Thumper July 23, 2014 at 3:11 pm

Just Corporate operations. 1300 jobs are moving to Charlotte. 750 of those are from South Carolina. I’m sure South Carolinians will be commuting to many of those jobs

Manufacturing facilities in Simpsonville and Seneca are not affected by Wednesday’s announcement, according to Aurichio.

Duncan July 23, 2014 at 6:43 pm

Have you ever driven from G’ville, Duncan, or Spartanburg to Charlotte during normal daily commuting hours? Of course you haven’t, because if you had you would know very well that those current employees will not be commuting to NC.

I go by the Duncan complex at least 5-6 times per week. My office is 12 minutes away in Spartanburg. I have friends who work there. Those administrative, research, and executive jobs are real jobs, not typical Piedmont low wage manufacturing jobs.

Say what you will: this is a real loss to the Piedmont, Haley’s apologists notwithstanding.

Deo Vindice SC July 23, 2014 at 7:17 pm

The movie is called, Idioticictrocy, I think. SC spells it R.

Bible Thumper July 23, 2014 at 7:25 pm

Yes it is bad for the Piedmont, but York, Chester and Lancaster will benefit to a lesser extent. Some from the Piedmont will move.
“Jobs gone” blamed the governor. It’s a free country. I’m sure efforts were made to keep these jobs in the Piedmont.

You can criticize Haley for a lot of things, but she beats most other states and the national average in job creation per capita. A lot of lower paying part time jobs, but this true in other states also. She can’t completely over come bad Federal policies and the national economy, but South Carolina has out performed most States and the nation.108,542 more jobs since taking office.

If I’m an apologists then you’re just a critic, which is always easier because things could always be better. Give me facts if you disagree about Haley’s jobs performance.

Paul July 23, 2014 at 9:48 pm

and how much taxpayer money did she spend to get these companies to come here? The Giti package alone included –

$35.8 million: State funds approved by the S.C. Coordinating Council on Economic Development for land purchase site improvement.

$2 million: State funds approved by the Rural Infrastructure Authority to assist with extending water and sewage to the site.

Jobs tax credits: From $1,500 to $8,000 per job created that can eliminate up to 50 percent of the employer’s income tax liability.

Job development credits: For up to 10 years reimburses eligible expenses related to real estate acquisition or improvement, infrastructure and other expenses.

An additional $1,000 per job income tax credit: For locating in a multi-county industrial park.

Fee-in-lieu agreement: To reduce the company’s local property taxes.

SOURCE: S.C. Department of Commerce

Bible Thumper July 23, 2014 at 10:03 pm

This is all true, but the cost benefit analysis more complicated than I can address here. Taxes and debt have not increased and tax revenue has increased possibly at the expense of future revenue. Other states also do this. There needs to be more oversite open records concerning these deals.

truthmonger July 24, 2014 at 6:07 am

The more “complex” you claim an issue is, the more likely you are trying to hide something…

truthmonger July 24, 2014 at 6:04 am

But when a company announced a move from Charlotte to SC (maybe 10-15 miles), Haley had NO PROBEM claiming the jobs as a gain for SC, even though they were already filled by people who would commute.

Assless Chaps July 23, 2014 at 11:54 am

So, the Briber is equally bribing the Candidate and the Campaign Manager for the munificent sum of $15k each. Preposterous.

Smirks July 23, 2014 at 12:04 pm

French doesn’t look like the kind of guy that is hard up for cash. Damn, if you’re going to bribe someone, at least offer a bribe that is hard to pass up.

Bible Thumper July 23, 2014 at 12:19 pm

How much does an exterminator make?

Buz Martin July 23, 2014 at 12:43 pm

They pull in the big bucks.

shifty henry July 23, 2014 at 12:54 pm

1) — Q. What’s the difference between an exterminator and a herd of elephants?
A. The exterminator charges more.

2) — A woman was having a passionate affair with an inspector from a pest-control company. One afternoon they were carrying on in the bedroom together when her husband arrived home unexpectedly. “Quick,” said the woman to the lover: “into the closet!” and she pushed him in the closet, stark naked.

The husband, however, became suspicious and after a search of the bedroom discovered the man in the closet. “Who are you?” he demanded
“I’m an inspector from Bugs-B-Gone,” said the exterminator.

“What are you doing in there?” the husband asked

. “I’m investigating a complaint about an infestation of moths,” the man replied.

“And where are your clothes?” asked the husband.

The man looked down at himself and said: “Those little bastards!”

CorruptionInColumbia July 23, 2014 at 12:57 pm

That’s one I never heard before! Good one!

shifty henry July 23, 2014 at 1:11 pm

An exterminator’s wife saw her husband spraying pesticide on a condom. “What’s the purpose of that?”
“You’ve had a bug up your ass for three days and I’m going in after it.”

Jolly good show! July 23, 2014 at 2:28 pm

Ha! That one is brilliant.

anonymous July 23, 2014 at 12:24 pm

Toal and Harrell bribed and paid off all sorts of legislators – not necessarily in cash to get Toal re-elected and that was okay. What’s the difference here?

Tom Davis July 23, 2014 at 9:36 pm

You can’t prove it… Hahahaha. And if you thought you could,…. Jean would ultimately be the judge. Hahahaha.

Some Readers R 2 Stupid July 23, 2014 at 1:50 pm

Likely a spoofed phone number and a throw away pre paid cell phone (if this incident actually even really took place). Judge and beyond reproach or not; I can slap documents in your faces that will show certain SC judges and their characters are not, “beyond reproach.” Even members of the SC bar.

Yawning July 23, 2014 at 2:50 pm

They don’t call it The Bar for kicks.

anonymous July 23, 2014 at 9:29 pm

Ya think????? Toal does it for power – not money – she inherited plenty….. She loves having white politicians’ testicles in jars in her office. That’s what gets her off. Right, Bill Nettles? Harrell? …… Well, and Beatty’s…. and Kittredge’s if he has any ,,,,,,and Hearn’s…..

TSIB July 23, 2014 at 3:01 pm



BrigidBernadette July 23, 2014 at 3:32 pm

A similar thing just happened in the Massachusetts governor’s race with Tea Party weirdo Mark Fisher, whom I do not believe for a second, there is something wrong with him, running against Charlie Baker in the primary. Huh. In the MA case Mark Fisher appears to be a spoiler and a plant. This sounds more like a prank. Maybe.

GrandTango July 25, 2014 at 8:42 am

Democrats are getting desperate, for sure.

Rocky July 23, 2014 at 4:28 pm

The caller, who had a very distinct southwest Asian accent, also offered free back rubs and a kumasarta book.

Rocky July 23, 2014 at 4:28 pm

The caller, who had a very distinct southwest Asian accent, also offered free back rubs and a kumasarta book.

Tom Hart July 23, 2014 at 5:14 pm

Never mind.

Colin Ross July 23, 2014 at 6:18 pm

Show me da money.

Deo Vindice SC July 23, 2014 at 7:23 pm

Simple, Haley is for Haley. IF YOU DON’T KNOW THAT, post with WIS.

sonnysboy July 23, 2014 at 9:08 pm

God forbid the “liberals” take the Governor’s office, seeing’s how the “Republicans” have been kicking so much ass for us. Funny, if it weren’t so sad.

Jackie Chiles July 24, 2014 at 8:55 am

$30k? That’s chump change.

shifty henry July 24, 2014 at 9:05 am

When I was being recruited to run for Governor, we never got to the issue of money.


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