Hollings blasts Obama, but admits that he voted for him

Ernest "Fritz"Hollings

Earlier today, former U.S. Sen. Fritz Hollings served up his own fiery critique of President Barack Obama’s State of the Union address.

“The president said, ‘We’ve got a Sputnik moment.’ Heck, it’s a Pearl Harbor moment!” Hollings told about 75 members and guests of the Charleston Kiwanis Club. “We’ve got a Pearl Harbor moment, and we’ve got to get back to work.”

He said the United States is losing its manufacturing base because it’s not enforcing its trade policies and because its tax structure makes it uncompetitive for industries to locate here. He said America has lost one third of its manufacturing sector in the past 10 years, including 26,600 jobs in South Carolina

Hollings, whose Senate career was marked by his outspokeness and who received a standing ovation before and after his talk, also blasted Obama for the comment that despite its troubles in recent years, the United States remains the world’s largest and most prosperous economy.

“That’s garbage. That’s outrageous,” he said. “He’s talking in the State of the Union and all he’s making is a campaign talk for re-election. It’s the darnedest thing in the world.”

Hollings said he voted for Obama and is still trying to support him, but when asked who he would support for president, he replied, "Someone with experience."

Read more in Friday’s editions of The Post and Courier.