COLUMBIA - After two years of debate, ethics reform efforts died Thursday in the Senate.

The bill became not good enough, according to some lawmakers, when the Senate rejected independent oversight for the General Assembly and the governor. But the House passed it weeks ago, arguing that a compromised bill was a step in the right direction.

The bill was hailed as the first attempt at ethics reform in 20 years, yet it fell victim to arguments between lawmakers who said the measure didn't go far enough and others who thought it would impede free speech.

And so, it suffered an agonizing death by filibuster on Thursday in the Senate.

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