Guest Op-Ed: Stephanie Rawlinson - "Who should run for the Seventh?"

This guest op-ed comes to us from Stephanie Rawlinson, 1st Vice Chair of the Florence County GOP and Broker-in-Charge of the McLaughlin Company, a Pee Dee real estate and commercial development company. As always, if you have something you'd like to share with our readers, you are welcome to submit a guest editorial via email to

Recently, I seem to have ruffled some feathers when I made this statement:
The Pee Dee still has a major hurdle to cross, if a person is sincere about protecting the Pee Dee they should spend time defending it to the Justice Department and assuring we get the 7th District rather than campaigning for a seat that has not yet been finalized. A person who announces a candidacy before the Justice Department rules shows no regard for the process, a serious immaturity in judgment, a lack of concern for the region and an unwillingness to put their own desires second to the advancement of the Pee Dee.

Many have asked me what exactly I meant when I said this, so I am going to spend a little time and clarify my statement.

Guest Cartoon: Jamie Walton & "Biden's Twisted Tongue"

Another submission from Jamie Walton of Rock Hill.

As always, submissions of guest editorials and cartoons are welcome for submission. Any submitted articles will be published verbatim and the source given credit. Send them via email to

The Republican Women of Dorchester County

A blogger meets with a bunch of women late one night … and attends a meeting.

The October meeting of the group featured GOP Committeewoman Cindy Costa and Dorchester County State Rep. Chris Murphy. A good group to hang with, the Blogland always appreciates their warm hospitality.

You can catch them every third Tuesday of the month, meeting in the back room at the Dog and Duck restaurant, next to Arby's on Trolley Road in Summerville.

Annual Barnwell GOP dinner

Last night, Barnwell County Republicans packed the house for their annual dinner. The Blogland was there and enjoyed their hospitality (and the BBQ as well).

While the event brought in three big GOP stars: SCGOP Chair Chad Connelly, SCGOP Second Vice-Chair Chair EJ Cousar and State Education Superintendent Mick Zais, it was Zais who gave the most meaningful information to attendees, promoting his agenda of focusing on boosting accountabilty, competition and incentives in South Carolina public schools.

Zais pointed out there was "no one-size-fits-all solution", warning that the "traditional school system puts every child in an assembly line, factory type system where every child is the same" for which he advcoated customization and personalization". Touching on his days in the U.S. Army where many soldiers came from disadvantaged homes, he reiterated his believe that "every inner city family has a right to the same choices for their children's education as anyone else."

Also, Kinlaw was recognized for his early support of renewed efforts to boost the state GOP's Silver Elephant fundraising program with a pin from Connelly.

Any way you go, it's a long drive to Barnwell County, but well worth it. Ben Kinlaw and the Barnwell GOP team are always great company.

Donehue to address national campaign IT conference

Donehue Direct would like to announce that CEO Wesley Donehue will be speaking on "The Digital Candidate" at the 2011 CampaignTech Conference. The conference will be held November 10-11 in Washington, D.C., and is being hosted by Campaigns and Elections magazine.

Donehue has been a good friend and a noted innovator in the political netroots world and it's always been a great experience to work with him. While we can't break away for this, we're sure those who attend will learn a ton.


State immigration compliance law challenged

Months before it takes effect, South Carolina's new immigration compliance law is being challenged in court. Alleging the act is unconstitutional, the following groups have filed suit to block the law's implementation, alleging "South Carolina and the nation have watched the devastation caused by laws like this as families have fled Alabama, businesses have lost patrons, and a climate of fear and hate have settled over the state":
American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of South Carolina, the Southern Poverty Law Center, the National Immigration Law Center, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), the South Carolina Appleseed Legal Justice Center, LatinoJustice PRLDEF, and the law firms of Rosen, Rosen & Hagood and the Lloyd Law Firm.

While the coalition alleges the new law "unfairly and illegally targets the Latino community with improper arrests and detentions", we reviewed the legislation and - not surprisingly - we didn't find any race-specific language.

Also, if any of our readers observe any recent outbreaks of devastation, fear or hate which they refer to anywhere in South Carolina, please let us know - because haven't seen any.

NLRB employer mandate postponed

The 11-by-17-inch notice should be posted in a conspicuous place, where other notifications of workplace rights and employer rules and policies are posted.

This implementation of this NLRB mandate, which was intended to take effect on November 14, will now be delayed until January 31 of next year. Reportedly, the NLRB's reason for the delay was that it needs to “provide enhanced education and outreach” to small and mid-sized companies.

Recently, the S.C. Chamber of Commerce joined the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in filing suit against the National Labor Relations Board (Chamber of Commerce, et al. v. National Labor Relations Board, et al.,) to challenge NLRB-issued regulations which will require nearly all employers to post a large notice to employees informing them of rights under the National Labor Relations Act, including their right to unionize. Many in the HR profession see this pending rule as little more than free advertising for labor unions and has been accused of being part of an ongoing pattern of the Obama administration giving free assistance to help labor unions reverse a long trend of declining membership, such as the current NLRB action against Boeing's new North Charleston manufacturing facility.

A pioneer lost

Guest cartoon: Jamie Walton - Obama & Taxes

Guest Op-Ed: Bill Connor, "The Hollow United States Military?"

Today's Guest Op-ed comes from Bill Connor, an Orangeburg attorney and Lt. Colonel in the U.S. Army reserve. Guest submittals will be considered for publication if sent via email to All op-eds will be published in their entirety and attributed to the original author.

On September 22, 2011, while testifying in front of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, stated: "If you took a trillion dollars out of defense that would break us”. He was referring to the mandatory cuts in Defense if the “Super Committee” failed to reach a plan for a budget. At the same hearing, Admiral Mullen warned that further cuts going past the $315 Billion planned “has forced us to look into the abyss”. The new Secretary of Defense, Leon Panetta, testified that further cuts would cause "catastrophic damage to military and ability to protect this country." Unfortunately, the new military drawdown and defense cuts are the most drastic seen since the post-Vietnam period of the 1970s. While the media and Presidential candidates put all focus on the nation’s economic problems, they ignore a gathering storm on the horizon: A “hollow” military.

Defeated Dem to make second House bid in Berkeley County?

In a heavily-Republican county such as Berkeley County, it's hard to find a Democrat willing to get beat like a drum once, much less twice. But it seems like Democrat Tonia Aiken-Taylor, who just lost a special election to fill House Seat 100 by about twenty points, plans to run for the House again next year.

After she lost to Republican Rep-elect Eddy Southard last week, Aiken-Taylor told the Charleston Post and Courier: "This was just a practice run."

Where she presently resides will remain in District 100 (presuming the redistricting plans receive pre-clearance from the Justice Department), a large part of the town of Moncks Corner, where she holds an at-large Town Council seat, will be moved into Rep. Joe Jefferson's majority-black House District 102. Some have told the Blogland that Aiken-Taylor may move into 102 and challenge Jefferson in next year's Democratic primary, knowing the nominee will easily carry the seat in the general elections.

Since the chances of a Democrat winning in heavily-Republican District 100 in what is expected to be a decent year for Republicans would be slim, using her head-start in the mostly-Democratic portions of District 100 which are being moved into District 102 seems a more logical next step to follow up on her "practice run".

We'll be watching this one.

GOP surge in WV guv race tied to Obama woes?

Today, voters in West Virginia go to the polls to decide who will complete the gubernatorial term of Joe Manchin, who won a spirited race last year to fill the state's then-vacant U.S. Senate seat.

After Manchin managed to break out of a close race in the closing weeks of his 2010 Senate race, Republicans weren't given much of a shot at contesting the race to replace him, but the race between acting Democratic Governor Earl Ray Tomblin and GOP businessman Bill Maloney, which started out as a sure-bet win for Tomblin, has changed radically with polling showing undecided voters breaking heavily for Maloney, cutting a lead of over thirty points to dead even.

Herman Cain's own brand of bigotry

Since Gov. Perry has been going there for years to hunt, I think that it shows a lack of sensitivity for a long time of not taking that word off of that rock and renaming the place.

The attacks from Cain seem ironic considering the kind of bigoted rhetoric Cain has directed at American Muslims. In March, Cain promised that he would not appoint Muslims to serve in his cabinet or in the federal judiciary.

E-verify use mandatory in 5 states

Following the Supreme Court ruling (Chamber of Commerce of the United States v. Whiting) in which justices ruled 5-3 that the state of Arizona could mandate the use of the federal E-verify system as a means of screening new hires, other states are following Arizona’s lead to mandate it’s use.

Legislation sponsored by Berkeley County Senator Larry Grooms will require South Carolina employers to use E-verify next year. In addition, three other states will also mandate E-verify usage next year: Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee.

For a first occurrence by a private employer, after July 1, 2012, of failure to verify a new hire through the E-Verify federal work authorization program within three business days, the Department of LLR must place the employer on probation for a period of one year, during which time the private employer must submit quarterly reports to the agency demonstrating compliance with the law. A subsequent violation within three years of the law’s verification requirements must result in the suspension of the private employer’s licenses for at least 10 days but not more than 30 days.

A private employer who knowingly or intentionally employs an unauthorized alien must have his licenses suspended by the Department of LLR on a first occurrence for at least 10 days but not more than 30 days.

Crescent Magazine offers positive look at SC

As hard a task as it may sound, Upstate political and public relations strategist Taft Matney has put his experience, his contacts and his knowledge of the Palmetto State into creating Crescent: The Magazine, a publication taking some positive looks at life and politics in the Palmetto State:

There’s a lot going on in South Carolina, and you deserve to know about it. At least that’s the premise behind CRESCENT.

With a mixture of original and aggregated content, it’s a look at South Carolina news and politics that may give you some “inside baseball” while making it understandable and entertaining.

Go take a look. We think he's got something pretty good going on here ...

Back in South Carolina

After a two-week hiatus traveling the Eastern Seaboard from South Carolina to Nova Scotia by car and cruise ship, it's time to get back to work. The Blogland has returned, so watch for new ramblings to appear soon.