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Haley v. State House

Posted: June 9, 2011 6:08 p.m.
Updated: June 10, 2011 5:00 a.m.

As we mentioned earlier this week, Gov. Nikki Haley has several solid proposals in her package to streamline state government. The S. C. Supreme Court has ruled that she doesn’t have the authority -- it was hardly a clear-cut decision, coming in at 3-2 -- to call the Senate back into session, as she attempted to do, and it now appears that South Carolinians might be in for four more years of contention between the governor and the legislature.

We’ve never believe that elected officials all need to get along with each other. Honest disagreements are healthy, and the public needs to beware when it appears that politicians in a particular body are all marching in lockstep. But residents of the Palmetto State grew weary of the contention between former Gov. Mark Sanford and the General Assembly, and a bit of blame could be laid at the feet of both. We’d hate to see a repeat of that between Haley and state lawmakers.

Of course, turf battles are involved. South Carolina has always been a strong legislative state, with limited powers given to the governor. Chief executives have tried for years to change that, and Haley certainly has her own agenda. That’s not a bad thing; some of her proposals make perfect sense. Now, Senate President Pro Tem Glenn McConnell, who perhaps holds even more power than Haley, says senators can vote on whether to take up Haley’s agenda.

Much of this is political posturing. Many experts say there’s little chance that the required two-thirds of senators would vote to consider the governor’s proposal. The give and take is fine. But we hope residents of this state won’t be subjected to such divisions for the remainder of Haley’s term. Disagreement is fine, but we don’t really need any drama kings or queens at the State House.


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