Daily Archives: May 29, 2012

And that would make it less “political” HOW?

I was a bit surprised by this move by Joan Brady:

A Midlands lawmaker says the investigation into Gov. Nikki Haley has gotten too political and is encouraging it be investigated by the state Attorney General’s Office instead of a legislative committee.

“The State Attorney General’s Office has the experienced investigators and staff necessary to address this matter in a fair and timely manner,” wrote Rep. Joan Brady, R-Richland, a member of the House Ethics Committee that is looking into charges that Haley illegally lobbied while a member of the House.

In a letter to the committee’s chairman, Brady continued the committee is “not positioned to hire the criminal investigators and lawyers necessary to fully investigate this complaint.”…

On the one hand, the attorney general should be someone who could credibly do this. That is the one great advantage, theoretically, to having the A.G. elected separately from the governor.

On the other hand, what’s our experience been? The A.G.’s office was much criticized for supposedly dragging its feet on the Ken Ard investigation. I’m not saying Alan Wilson DID delay dealing with that sticky wicket; I’m saying he was accused of it. And I think it fair to say that criticism was… political. In the end, the thing was handled properly, but along the way there were plenty of recriminations. Political recriminations.

Does an investigation by lawmakers of one of their own have a political dimension? You bet. But so does an investigation by an elected official from outside the General Assembly.

And as it happens, the way the law is set up, it’s the Legislature’s job to investigate this. Rep. Brady not wanting to do so comes across as little more than wanting to ditch a hot potato.

Maybe it is more than that. If so, Rep. Brady should present clear evidence that the process has been compromised. That is to say, more compromised than that party-line vote to dismiss the charges the first time around.

The innuendo here — raised by Nikki Haley (who would never seek to influence an investigation of herself — would she?) — is that Bobby Harrell has improperly influenced the investigation by urging the panel to DO something this time.

I suppose you could see that two ways — as Harrell out to get Nikki, or as the speaker wanting a trustworthy ethics panel that won’t punt at the first whiff of public scrutiny.

If Rep. Brady has evidence that Harrell has crossed a line, let’s hear it when the panel meets on Wednesday. If not, if it’s just that the members are in an uncomfortable position here — well, Alan Wilson would be, too, if you dumped it on him.

Democratic heavyweights line up behind Brittain

After Ted Vick imploded about as completely as a candidate can last week, top Democrats are publicly lining up behind Preston Brittain in the primary for the new 7th Congressional District:


On Tuesday, May 29 at 11:15 AM, Congressman Jim Clyburn, former Congressman John Spratt, former Governor Jim Hodges, and Senators Vincent Sheheen and John Land will hold a conference call for the press to announce their endorsement of Preston Brittain. Brittain, a local Horry County attorney, is currently a Democratic candidate in the newly drawn 7th Congressional District of South Carolina.

Prior to reapportionment, Clyburn and Spratt each represented portions of the newly drawn 7th Congressional District including Florence and Darlington Counties….

That sort of leaves Gloria Bromell Tinubu, the preferred candidate of Donna Dewitt‘s AFL-CIO, out in the cold in the June 12 primary.

Gallup: Veterans are cause of the gender gap

Here’s an interesting fact I didn’t know before.

Turns out that the “gender gap” that has Mitt Romney doing better among men and Barack Obama doing better among women (the usual pattern for a generation, at least) is less a gender thing, and more a matter of whether men have served in the military or not. According to Gallup:

PRINCETON, NJ — U.S. veterans, about 13% of the adult population and consisting mostly of older men, support Mitt Romney over Barack Obama for president by 58% to 34%, while nonveterans give Obama a four-percentage-point edge.

These data, from an analysis of Gallup Daily tracking interviews conducted April 11-May 24, show that 24% of all adult men are veterans, compared with 2% of adult women.

Obama and Romney are tied overall at 46% apiece among all registered voters in this sample. Men give Romney an eight-point edge, while women opt for Obama over Romney by seven points. It turns out that the male skew for Romney is driven almost entirely by veterans. Romney leads by one point among nonveteran men, contrasted with the 28-point edge Romney receives among male veterans.

The small percentage of female veterans in the U.S., in contrast to their male counterparts, do not differ significantly in their presidential vote choice from the vast majority of women who are not veterans…

Here’s a graph:

Interesting. I wonder what the long-term implications of this will be. Most of the men who have served in the military are older than I am. Twenty years from now, will much of the gender gap have disappeared, in favor of Democrats? I don’t know. I’d need to understand better why this veteran gap exists to be able to answer that.