The candidate best qualified for that job is Goose Creek Representative Shirley Hinson.
I haven’t always been a friend of Shirley’s. In 2000, I ran the campaign of her now-former husband, Jimmy Hinson, which ended in a close finish in a tough, high-profile GOP run-off. To her critics who are still holding the personal issues over her, I say it’s long past time to put that issue behind, get over it, and move forward. Regardless of what you think, it's long past and not relevant.
Over the last eleven years in the House, Shirley Hinson has learned the ropes in the General Assembly. She won’t start as a novice in the Senate, which will be critical in making sure Berkeley County’s primary Senate district is well-represented. To that end, her willingness to stand up and be heard on issues important to her county mean she will put that experience to work.
On the important issues of the day, Shirley is the right voice to bring to the table in the Senate. She is a fiscal conservative who played a leadership role in working to end “alternative” school district funding which unethically burdened taxpayers with the load of billions of dollars of school debt.
Shirley doesn’t just attack the problems at the legislative level. She came home and worked to unseat members of her county’s school board who were some of the biggest hogs at the alternative funding trough. This included campaigning for her ex-husband, who was her 2000 opponent. Having run the campaigns of the two candidates who ousted the county’s most atrocious alternative funding advocates, I found Shirley to be one of our best allies, fully committed to protecting the taxpayers.
Shirley has also worked to support continued efforts at restructuring. The Senate, long a dead-end for reform efforts, will find it a little harder to get away with “business as usual” with Shirley among them.
In Shirley Hinson, we find a legislator who is tough campaigner, thoughtful about the issues which affect her constituents, and outspoken when it counts. These qualities are crucial in serving in public office, and would serve her, and the people of Berkeley County, well in the Senate.
She has learned much in her career of public service, and has much to offer in the State Senate. The voters of her district would be wise to give her a much-deserved promotion in the upcoming special election.