You may recall that a while back I chided the head of the state Chamber for not taking a stand against (or for, for that matter) our governor during the stimulus farce (“Otis, tell him what YOU think,” April 30).
Well, Otis Rawl has gotten over his shyness about the gov, of so this item seems to indicate:
State chamber exec: Sanford’s departure now or later could benefit I-85 project
Embattled Gov. Mark Sanford’s woes could be good in the long run for a development off Interstate 85 and State 14 in Greer that legislators have said may include a Bass Pro Shop, according to the president of the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce.
Sanford opposed special tax breaks for magnet retailers, such as Bass Pro, and “if everybody was playing by the same rules, that’s fine,” state chamber president Otis Rawl said.
But other states offer incentives, he said, adding “If we don’t play the game, we lose jobs.”
“I think that all that’s happening around Sanford and depending what Sanford does will lend itself positively to whether Bass Pro Shop decides to locate here,” Rawl said. “It’s awful hard for a company to look at South Carolina and your governor, who’s supposed to be your biggest cheerleader, not supporting trying to get a company that would create anywhere from 500 to 1,000 jobs in the community.”
A Sanford resignation would put Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer in power, who would be “one of our businesses’ biggest cheerleaders,” Rawl said.
If Sanford does not resign, “It’s got to be a step forward for us to look toward 2010 to have a new governor that focuses on jobs and economic development,” he said.
In other words, whether sooner or later, Otis — like many in positions of business or political leadership — is really looking forward to the day when Mark Sanford is out of office. And it’s nothing personal. It’s strictly business.