S.C. Republican U.S. Sen. Tim Scott was named one of the most partisan members of the Senate in a study released last week.
The Bipartisanship Index from the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University measures how often D.C. lawmakers sign on as co-sponsor to bills authored by a member from the other party and, conversely, how often they can get co-sponsors from the opposite side to back their legislation.
Scott’s ranking puts him in company with one of the body’s most conservative members: Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.
One hiccup though: Just days after the list came out, Scott announced he was forming the “Prescription Drug Abuse Caucus” with Sen. Joe Manchin, a West Virginia Democrat.
The new caucus will raise awareness to the problem of prescription drug abuse that particularly strikes poor and rural communities, including in South Carolina and Manchin’s Appalachia.
Some 17,000 Americans die of prescription opioid overdoses every year, or 46 Americans every day, according to the caucus’ statistics. “This is a problem we must tackle from every angle,” Scott said.
While Scott is considered one of the least bipartisan in the index, it appears he connected with the right guy to take on prescription drug abuse. Manchin was voted among the most bipartisan for his willingness to reach across the aisle.
Last week wasn’t the best for U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham.
After announcing he will announce his presidential campaign on June 1 in his hometown of Central, Graham learned he’s not guaranteed a spot at Fox New’s leadoff GOP presidential candidate debate, Aug. 6 in Cleveland.
To limit the field, Fox said that only the top 10 candidates taken from an average of five late summer polls will be allowed on the stage.
As many as 16 Republicans could be in the race by August, and Graham has polled around 13th.
Graham also hoped to make a splash on the “CBS This Morning” show Monday where he made his “save the date” announcement on his White House bid.
That didn’t go entirely smooth, either.
First, his appearance time was shifted from 7 a.m., to 8 a.m. Then he had to wait in the green room while stories on the Amtrak crash, fighting in Iraq, the Texas biker-gang fight, the “Mad Men” finale, daredevils killed in Yosemite, murders in northwest Washington and a great white shark who is on Twitter all preceded him, according to media tabulations.
One of South Carolina’s House members has sued a Midlands-based political blogger.
Rep. Kenny Bingham, R-Cayce, filed a lawsuit May 12 against William “Will” Folks, the voice behind FitsNews. In the suit’s paperwork, Bingham alleges Folks published “false and defamatory statements,” even after he was told that the information was inaccurate.
The articles claimed that an ethics complaint was being filed by libertarian activist Colin Ross against Bingham, who chairs the House ethics committee, for allegedly using his position as a lawmaker for political gain.
Folks’ site is often a go-to site for those in Columbia’s political circles seeking insider and often unconfirmed information. According to the lawsuit, the site reaches “approximately 300,000,” though it was unclear if the number applies to daily, weekly or monthly hits.
U.S. Rep. Mark Sanford will host Republican presidential hopeful Dr. Ben Carson at the Mount Pleasant Farmers Market at Moultrie Middle School on Tuesday beginning at 3:45 p.m.
Ohio Republican Gov. John Kasich will be in Charleston on Wednesday to address the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Circle at its North Charleston offices. He’ll also have some private meetings and a tour of the Port of Charleston. It’s his third visit to South Carolina. He’ll also stop by the Liberty Tap Room 1028 Johnnie Dodds Blvd., in Mount Pleasant from 5:15-6:30 p.m.
And while Hillary Clinton hasn’t released her itinerary yet, she is scheduled to be in the state on Wednesday.