Interesting exchange in District 79

Randy Page of SCRG shared with me his response to an e-mail from David Herndon, whom we recently endorsed over Sheri Few for the GOP nomination in House Dist. 79.

First, the letter he says he got from Mr. Herndon:

From: David Herndon, Republican for House
District 79

Dear sirs,

As you are aware, I am a Republican candidate for the S.C.
House of Representatives. I am writing because I am concerned about your
involvement in not just this race, but many others across the state as

It has been brought to my attention that your
special-interest organization has sent out many mailings in many Legislative
races in South Carolina. Some of these postcards simply promote candidates, but
others are “attack pieces” which aim to discredit Republican office-holders who
support public education.

While state law certainly allows special interest groups to
endorse whomever you wish, these mailings leave many unanswered questions.
First, and most importantly, nowhere in any of these mailings — at least the
ones I am aware of — do you disclose the true motives of your group.

It is my understanding the purpose of your organization is to
advocate private school vouchers. Strangely, neither your advocacy of vouchers
nor your preferred candidates’ support for vouchers is mentioned in any of your

As a public school parent, I strongly support public
education, and I believe your private-school voucher scheme would only drain
needed funding away from public school classrooms. However, I view this as an
honest difference of opinion, and I certainly believe it is important for
elected Representatives to find a common ground with those of other viewpoints.
What I do have a problem with is that your organization is not disclosing your
true motives. I feel this amounts to misleading voters.

Last month, I wrote to my opponent, Mrs. Few, to express my
concern about your involvement in this race. My concerns were based on your
previous track record of running negative, deceptive campaigns against
Republican office-holders who support education; your attempts to disguise your
true motives; and published reports that say much, if not a majority, of your
funding comes from out-of-state. (In my opinion, your negative campaign against
Bill Cotty in 2006 was perhaps the most negative our community has ever been
subjected to.)

My letter still has received no response, so I decided to
contact your organization directly.

I am writing you with this public challenge: In the rest of
your mailings this election cycle, please level with the voters about your true
motive — the privatization of education. The voters deserve honesty. And after
all, your group calls itself “South Carolinians for Responsible Government.” I
would think the hallmark of anyone claiming to advocate “responsible government”
would see the value in being as honest and up front as possible with the

So what do you say, SCRG? Do the voters not deserve to be
told the truth about your group’s purpose as you fill up their mailboxes with
attack pieces, pictures of pigs and postcards about conservative

I look forward to your response, and I hope you will answer
this challenge. The voters deserve as much.

Thank you,

David Herndon

Then, Randy’s response:

Dear Mr.

Thank you for your
email.  I appreciate you taking the time to contact South Carolinians for
Responsible Government. 

Through mail, radio and
Internet, we have been very clear about our objectives.  In fact, you can read
about it on our website at
     We have long advocated the need for lower taxes, government restructuring,
conservative judges and for tuition tax credits.

In my view, citizens
don’t need to be wary of a conservative organization that advocates for better
schools, lower taxes and streamlining government, but rather someone, like
yourself, who one day professes a particular set of beliefs, but then decides –
perhaps on the advice of a slick political consultant – that he’s changed his
position.  What else could describe your sudden about face on the issue of
school choice? 

In the survey that you
signed and submitted to us on April 18th, you clearly checked that
you supported both a scholarship granting organization and a voucher system. 
I’m sure this will come as a complete surprise to the editors of The State.
If you don’t remember, I’ve included a copy of it for you – as well as the
members of the media that were copied on this message.


Randy Page,

South Carolinians for
Responsible Government

I guess it’s a good thing that, as I said in my Sunday column, it was her position on the cigarette tax that made me decide against endorsing Sheri Few.

8 thoughts on “Interesting exchange in District 79

  1. Lee Muller

    Shame on citizens for desiring a responsible government!
    It’s okay for the GovCo schools to impose some homosexual curricula on students, or have a primary mission of making the students not question their government, but if a citizens group hides the fact that they want to offer tax reform and freedom of choice in education, they must be exposed!

  2. Susanna K.

    I received one of SCRG’s mailings last week. It was a blatant attack piece against Tom Young, a Republican candidate for the state house.
    The flyer accused Mr. Young of being a “trial lawyer” (Because, as we all know, they are evil incarnate! Not like lobbyists and PACs, who are total angels.) and included a superfluous picture of Bill Clinton with no explanation.
    I am neither for nor against Mr. Young, but I am strongly against stupid, pointless attacks like the kind SCRG is mailing out. I know they have the right to free speech, and to waste their money as they see fit, but this kind of substance-free attack poisons the well and benefits no one.

  3. Randy E

    That’s damning evidence, Brad. At least with Few’s ideology you know where she stands. In your interview thread, you do address private school vouchers as a significant difference.
    So, the decision is between a ship anchored far off to the right or one with no rutter, guided by the prevailing wind.

  4. Barry

    David has been consistent out here in Elgin. I don’t know him at all. But I have seen his letters in the little local Elgin newspaper opposing vouchers.

  5. Shelby Price

    Mr. Hearndon is means well. He failed to take the time to study the issues and inform himself before opening his mouth. Thus he is suffering from “foot in mouth” disease.


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