State House

South Carolina’s Uniparty Is Rubber Stamping Another Far Left Judge

Republican supermajority can’t stop electing liberal judges …

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There’s been plenty of of discussion over the last few weeks about the increasingly overt machinations of the uniparty establishment which governs the state of South Carolina – setting budgets, passing laws and picking judges.

After years of winking and nodding at each other as they pretended to be partisan antagonists, the ruse is finally up … the charade finally abandoned … the illusion finally shattered.

“Republican” leaders have finally said the proverbial quiet part out loud – publicly aligning themselves with Democratic leaders in an effort to silence (and oust) those who dare to oppose their increasingly costly failure.

To be clear: Party labels in the Palmetto State have never meant much, but as the 2024 session of the S.C. General Assembly starts to heat up they have become utterly worthless. Meaningless.

Here’s a quick history lesson …

For more than a century from 1878-1994, generations of corrupt, self-serving white Democrats were exclusively to blame for the myriad problems plaguing the Palmetto State. Since 2001, however, legislative power has been held exclusively by white “Republicans” – many of whom simply flipped parties (albeit not governing philosophies) as a means of maintaining their power. These GOP politicians talk a big game on the campaign trial, but when it comes time to actually implement the principles they campaigned on … their resolve evaporates.



Not content with lying to (and selling out) their constituents, these “Republicans” have now begun to target the handful of GOP lawmakers who do have courage of their convictions – and the courage to call out the sellouts.

As I noted just this week, since obtaining their numerical supermajority following the 2022 elections, House GOP leaders have “done everything in their power to neuter the conservative wing of their party.”

That includes the removal of conservative Republicans who declined to sign a “loyalty oath” to the uniparty establishment. It also includes recent efforts to bribe challengers to run against members of the S.C. Freedom Caucus in the upcoming 2024 primary election – as well as a controversial new rules change intended to silence dissent on the floor of the S.C. House.

The goal of these moves? To preserve the status quo – i.e. passing recklessly large budgets, awarding massive crony capitalist handouts and appointing unqualified judges whose decisions materially erode public safety.

The next judge to be anointed? Former S.C. House minority leader – and 2018 Democratic gubernatorial nominee – James Smith. According to our sources, Smith has earned the support of a majority of “Republican” lawmakers in his bid for a S.C. circuit court judgeship.

Crazy, right? Smith ran one of the most left-of-center gubernatorial campaigns in South Carolina history – including promises to expand access to “safe, legal abortion.”

“James Smith is a vocal supporter and advocate for Planned Parenthood,” the organization noted in a press release endorsing his candidacy.

How, exactly, do GOP lawmakers plan to explain voting for Smith to their rabidly pro-life constituents?

(Click to View)

James Smith on the campaign trail in 2018. (Facebook)

Smith also campaigned in 2018 on a costly “Medicare-for-all” single-payer health care system – i.e. the exact proposal embraced by socialist U.S. senator Bernie Sanders.

Again … is that the sort of thing that plays well in a “Republican” primary?

And let’s not forget the quid pro quo that landed Smith his last cushy taxpayer-funded gig … or his duplicity in obtaining millions of dollars in federal contracts for disabled veterans (which he illegally passed along to non-veteran firms, according to a 2013 audit).

As he seeks a judgeship, Smith hasn’t been credibly challenged on any of these issues – except abortion. According to our sources, he met privately with several Freedom Caucus members recently and told them if elected he would not attempt to erode last summer’s S.C. supreme court decision upholding a six-week abortion ban.

Can’t wait until his friends at Planned Parenthood find out about that …

Seriously, though. This isn’t about abortion. It isn’t about socialized medicine. It isn’t even about Smith being shady as hell when it comes to taxpayer-funded jobs and contracts. It is about one thing: Republicans being two-faced hypocrites. Seriously … this is a party that loves to complain about activist, liberal judges. And yet in South Carolina, its members are the ones electing those judges.

My media outlet has been singling out certain votes as “litmus tests” for members of the S.C. General Assembly. While I am not sure whether a vote in favor of Smith’s judgeship will be one of those, I can say GOP lawmakers who support his bid are likely to face withering criticism from Republican primary voters.

As I was going to press with this story, though, reports began trickling in about what Democrats are up to in their efforts to push Smith’s opponent for this seat out of the race – which, if true, would mark yet another example of the rampant corruption that infects our state’s judicial selection process.

Stay tuned for more on the Democratic side of this equation in a future report …

BANNER: Travis Bell Columbia SC Photographers



(Travis Bell Photography)

Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina and before that he was a bass guitarist and dive bar bouncer. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven (soon to be eight) children.



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Nanker Phelge January 18, 2024 at 10:23 pm

Only in the koo koo krazy world of Fits is James Smith “far left”.

SubZeroIQ January 19, 2024 at 1:24 pm

Please, don’t start demonizing Bernie Sanders or “socialized medicine.” That issue should be scientifically and objectively debated.
If only Bernie Sanders were opposed to abortion, he would be a Catholic saint although he is a non-practicing Jew. But he is opposed to the death penalty; and that makes him in some way pro-life.
Curiously, if Pope Francis were running for judge in South Carolina, do you think your Republicans should vote for him?

James January 19, 2024 at 5:15 pm

James Smith is indeed from the far left of the Dem party.
For Republicans to place him in a judgeship is a slap in the face to all republican voters.
We don’t ask for political litmus test. but surely a Leftwing politician turned judge is a bad idea.
The Republican leadership is anything but Republican Leadership.

SubZeroIQ January 19, 2024 at 6:59 pm

Not that I endorse the Democrat Party and its push to give fadist teenagers hormones that will harm them later; BUT I once asked on this website what do Republicans really stand for? Half-naked girls who hate foreigners? And the only answer I received was “that’s a unifying message.”
Really, what do those who call themselves Republicans stand for?
Social values? Their current idol is three-times married, twice divorced, and cheated even on the incomparable Melania. His adult male sons, too, are on their second wives or their second girlfriends.
And BTW, with the Trump shift in the party, “the base” really wants some form of abortion while remaining sanctimonious about it. The trailer-park new Republicans really want abortions and probably had lots of them, which explains why abortion bans failed in at least two red states which put the matter to popular vote.
Before leaving this point, life begins at fertilization, which is even earlier than conception (the implantation of the fertilized ovum in the endometrium). So, even IUDs are forms of abortion; and “heartbeat bills” are not really pro-life because life begins MUCH earlier than the detectability of a heart beat.
Back to the Republicans and what are they really for.
Business? Free market? Not really. The new “base” want and take government subsidies as much their neighbors. They are just paranoid about others getting a piece of the dole.
Strong defense? Not really. The demographics of the new Republican “base” does not sign up for the military as the old base did.
I really need to know where you want “the Republican leadership” to lead its base if not towards half-naked girls who hate foreigners.

Dum Spiro Spero Top fan January 20, 2024 at 6:54 pm

I’ll take this decent, honest, bright, civic-minded, experienced, family-man who volunteered to defend this country in Afghanistan over any of the right wing nut cases who FITS seems to prefer.

HedgeHogEyes January 21, 2024 at 10:26 am

Right on Will. Keep it up, and get the word out far and wide.
At the rate that people keep moving here from heavily Blue states, plus the Uniparty’s failure to represent their constituents, South Carolina will resemble Northern Virginia before long.

SubZeroIQ January 21, 2024 at 6:22 pm

Because I have no more free articles left this month, and because articles like this one strengthen my resolve to NOT subscribe to FITSNews, I need to post here my comment on FITSNews’ latest Week-in-Review, specially now that Ron DeSantis has just dropped out.
But before I do, three more things:
(1) DeSantis cannot be Trump’s VP pick because the Constitution requires the President and the Vice President to be from different states; and Trump has officially made himself a Floridian more than two years ago.
(2) Those South Carolina politicians DeSantis has gathered to attack Haley must now have much egg on their face. I always knew that “southern gentleman” BS was code for incompetent white male who feels most threatened by a female of some color. And parenthetically, Nikki needs some color, not melanin but hemoglobin. She is getting too thin and pale for her own good. A little self-care, Nikki! Learn from Simone Biles; but do not take a whole season, just a week between Nevada and South Carolina.
(3) Not that I support “corporatism” or war hawks. But isn’t a corporation BASICALLY a mom-and-pop business which “grew up”? The differences between FITSNews and FOX News are the generation and the size; but each started as a small LOCAL news operation
Now to my post on WIR:
Why should Nikki Haley drop out if she does not win New Hampshire, or even South Carolina for that matter?
It’s a great big country out there; and not all of it thinks like Iowa, New Hampshire, or South Carolina.
Heck! Not even Georgia or North Carolina thinks like South Carolina.
The REAL math: Nikki Haley can rout Trump if you add the blue bicoastals (they have Republicans, too, but of a different kind) and even some of the OTHER heartland.
“First in the South” does NOT mean “first AND LAST in the South.”
If Mahatma Ghandi had given up the first time the British refused to evacuate India, India would still have been a British colony today.
You guys do not understand immigrant perseverance.

JJ January 22, 2024 at 6:31 pm

Can anyone provide info on SC Family Court Judge White? He has a gray man bun that worries me, and he holds my future under his gavel in my divorce. I have become sorta famous for my conservative Mighty Motors signs, and I am definitely a target for liberals. Is he a liberal? Somebody must know…

JJ January 22, 2024 at 7:57 pm

Call me at 803-684-3007, Mighty Motors. $ reward for useful information. My ass is at the mercy of a questionable, possibly biased Judge that might fit this category and I am worried that I can no longer trust SC government.

Ernesto Fernandez January 26, 2024 at 8:37 pm

One who supports big government, no ID voting, abortion and is against self defense, the US Constitution and freedom of speech but votes in the Republican side is just a liar afraid of being himself.
Nicky Haley is not for the good of America neither is Biden nor judge James Smith they hide their intentions because they hate America.
We need more families to produce many more great children.


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