One thing I need to do is catch up on some recent meetings I haven’t let y’all know about, before I get too far behind. I’ll mention this chance encounter from this morning now:
I ran into Sen. Hugh Leatherman this morning at breakfast and sat with him for awhile to kick over a number of topics — national and state politics, what’s happening in Florence, etc.
Two things stand out in my mind:
- We talked about endowed chairs. Sen. Leatherman is high on the program, but isn’t convinced that the cap has to be raised. Mind you, he’s certainly not persuaded by any of the governor’s objections, which seem to him off-base. The governor chops at trees, but has never bought into the forest (although he IS into preservation of wilderness, so maybe that’s a bad metaphor). But the Senate Finance Chairman sees a way to make sure future chairs are funded without lifting the cap. He briefly explained it, but I confess I didn’t fully understand it, and didn’t want to detain him all morning trying to. It’s a good topic for further inquiry.
- I was reminded at various points in the conversation, as I am so often in speaking with the General Assembly’s Republican leadership, about how frustrated they are trying to deal with the governor day-to-day. Conversations such as this one flesh out the substance of such stories as this one in The Post and Courier today, about the governor’s efforts to stack the Legislature in his image. To serious, responsible lawmakers, having one Mark Sanford is enough of a burden; they don’t need any clones. Note this quote from the Charleston story: "If someone ran against Senator Leatherman, I’d probably support them." Who said that? Mark Sanford. So we’re not just talking paranoia here.