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#ProbeGate: Subpoenas Issued

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Subpoenas issued by the South Carolina statewide grand jury have landed on the desk of at least two people in the aftermath of last month’s #ProbeGate testimony from veteran South Carolina political strategist Richard Quinn.

According to our sources, one of the subpoenas issued in the aftermath of Quinn’s much-anticipated testimony was received by S.C. solicitor general Bob Cook – an institution in the South Carolina attorney general’s office for several decades.   In addition to working for incumbent “Republican” attorney general Alan Wilson, Cook has served under prior attorneys general (and Quinn clients) Charlie Condon and Henry McMaster – the latter of whom has since become the state’s 117th governor.

We addressed Cook’s role in the office extensively in this piece last summer.

According to sources familiar with the situation, Cook has had a contentious relationship with Quinn in the past – pushing back against alleged political interference in the office of the state’s top prosecutor.

It’s not clear why his testimony is being sought.

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Another subpoena was reportedly received by state representative Bill Herbkersman, a longtime ally of Quinn and his son – former state representative Rick Quinn.

What is Herbkersman’s proximity to this investigation?  Again, it’s not immediately clear.

Sources in the South Carolina Lowcountry tell us his testimony could be connected to prosecutor David Pascoe’s ongoing battle with the presiding judge in this case – S.C. circuit court judge Carmen Mullen.

That fight has been exceedingly acrimonious, with Pascoe accusing Mullen of judicial bias and the judge firing back at the prosecutor for failing to prove his allegations in court.

We’ll be sure to let our readers know in the event we learn more …

For the better part of the last three years, #ProbeGate has been focused on the powerful corporate and governmental interests represented by the elder Quinn – with Pascoe alleging an elaborate pay-to-play network run by the veteran strategist.

The Quinns’ and their allies have consistently argued that they never ran afoul of the law – and that Pascoe’s investigation has been a politically motivated witch hunt orchestrated by veteran Democratic attorney Dick Harpootlian, one of Pascoe’s mentors.

As we’ve noted on several occasions recently, Pascoe has yet to bring a defendant to trial in connection with the ongoing investigation, however he has secured guilty pleas and resignations from three powerful “Republican”members of the S.C. House of Representatives – the younger Quinn, former S.C. speaker of the House Bobby Harrell and former majority leader Jimmy Merrill.

The first #ProbeGate trial of suspended state senator John Courson is scheduled for early June.  Meanwhile two additional defendants – state code commissioner and former House judiciary chairman Jim Harrison and former state representative Tracy Edge – still have charges pending against them in connection with the ongoing investigation.

News of #ProbeGate was exclusively reported by this site back in October of 2014.  Since then, we’ve broken dozens of stories related to the investigation … including the one you just finished reading.

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