State House News: May 15th – 18th
|May 18, 2017
The May 16 GOP runoff for the 5th Congressional District nomination was too close to call, triggering an automatic recount under state law. Former Rep. Ralph Norman (R-York) appeared to narrowly defeat Rep. Tommy Pope (R-York) by about 200 votes. Over 35,000 votes were cast in the runoff, with unofficial results showing 17,772 for Norman and 17,572 for Pope. The results should be certified on May 19, and the winner of the runoff will face Democrat Archie Parnell and several third-party candidates in the June 20 general election.
Democrat Wendy Brawley won the Democratic primary runoff on May 16 in her bid to win the vacated seat of Rep. Joe Neal, who unexpectedly passed away earlier this year. Brawley will face Republican Bill Strickland in the June 20 general election.
Ongoing Ethics Probe Leads to Another Indictment
On May 16, another Republican lawmaker was indicted on public corruption charges in the state’s ongoing ethics investigation. Rep. Rick Quinn (R-Lexington), who faces two counts of misconduct in office, stated that he is “asking for a speedy trial so this can be resolved as quickly as possible.”
Rep. Quinn is the third state lawmaker to be indicted in the last six months after investigation by Pascoe, a state solicitor for Calhoun, Dorchester, and Orangeburg. Rep. Quinn is a former majority leader in the House, and currently serves on the House Judiciary Committee.
Budget Conference Update
The budget conferees have been working this week to come to an agreement on the state’s budget for the upcoming fiscal year. They plan to meet again the afternoon of May 18 at some point, but the meeting time has yet been announced after the original 11AM meeting was postponed. Conferees are still hopeful that a conference report will be complete before the House and Senate return to Columbia next Tuesday, May 23.
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Gov. Jim Hodges, Senior Advisor
Billy Boan, Senior Vice President
Robert Adams, Senior Vice President
Amber S. Barnes, Vice President
Brian Flynn, Vice President
Robin Crawford, Assistant Vice President
Kayleigh Hall, Assistant Vice President