The South Carolina Ethics Commission will soon be determining whether candidates and sponsors are dodging the state law that has set limits on campaign contributions by distributing money through several companies. According to Steven Hamm, who is a director at the agency, the commissioners will answer important questions during a meeting that will be held in January. The outcome of the meeting will significantly influence the 2018 elections. Governor Henry McMaster of the Republican Party and Catherine Templeton, who is his greatest competitor, have already collected a significant amount of money a few people. These individuals have made donations through different companies, employees, friends, and family members. The illegal practices have been happening for years.
The suggestion of investigating the candidates and donors practices was brought up by John Crangle, who has been a government watchdog for a long time. Crangle is an attorney, and he participated in the writing of the 1991 state ethic legislations that the aims at regulating donations for campaigns. The law allows statewide candidates to receive up to $3,500-per-election-cycle while the limits for other elected offices is $1000.
The state law has assisted in preventing the political process from being influenced by the large amounts of money that are offered during campaigns. Many donors are currently dodging it by the establishing shell corporations and making contributions under their names. According to Crangle, the sponsors understand the morality of their actions. The recipients also know that it is illegal to receive huge amounts of money from one source but through different channels. John Crangle is now South Carolina Progressive Network’s director of government relations. The practice of ignoring the law started decades ago when Howard Rich, a New York millionaire, gave a lot of money to oust Republicans who opposed Governor Mark Sanford’s policies on choice for private schools.