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SC Legislature: Think Tanks Weigh In




|| By FITSNEWS ||  Two think tanks are weighing in on the upcoming session of the S.C. General Assembly … hoping to shift the “Republican-controlled” legislature’s left-leaning ideology back to the right a bit.

Oh, and to get some meaningful ethics reform passed … (unlike the “reform in name only” advanced unsuccessfully last year by governor Nikki Haley).

One group – the libertarian-leaning S.C. Policy Council – has launched a new page previewing all of the proposed ethics bills, endeavoring to separate the wheat from the chaff.  So far (surprise, surprise), there appears to be a lot more “chaff.”

“As the 2015 session begins, already more than 30 ethics-related bills have been filed,” the Policy Council’s review notes.  “Some would accomplish worthy goals, to be sure.  Yet most contain troubling and dangerous provisions that would loosen rather than strengthen existing ethics requirements, make corruption easier rather than harder, and encourage rather than abolish secrecy.”

Wait … state lawmakers filing deceptive legislation?  Surely not (editor’s note: sarcasm alert).

In addition to the Policy Council, another group – former U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint‘s Palmetto Policy Forum – is also offering its thoughts on the upcoming legislative session.

The top policy item on its list?  Legislation that would expand the state’s current school choice tax credit from exceptional needs children “to all children trapped in poverty.”  The group also wants the expanded temporary budget proviso to become “a part of permanent law.”

We concur …

South Carolina is the only state in the nation featuring a school choice program that must be re-authorized every year as part of the budget – which along with the limited size of the program is sadly indicative of the Palmetto State’s lack of commitment to academic freedom.

DeMint’s group also wants a “reduction and elimination of the state income tax, an earned income tax credit for poor South Carolinians, and state spending limitations.”

We like those ideas …

In fact on the spending limitation front, we would humbly suggest state lawmakers finally pass a “Taxpayer Rebate Fund” like the one S.C. Sen. Tom Davis has been pushing for years in the hopes of sending surplus revenues (and government “savings”) back to the people.

You know, as opposed to spending it on crap like this …

Now … do we expect any common sense, pro-free market laws to actually pass the legislature this year?  Or any meaningful ethics reform bills?  Or spending limitations?

Ummmm … no.

We suspect lawmakers will do what they always do … tax, and spend.  With predictable results …

That’s too bad.  South Carolinians struggling to overcome low incomes and a shrinking workforce deserve so much more than “more of the same.”

Unfortunately, that’s what their leaders keep giving them … laughing all the way to the bank.