The South Carolina Senate worked past midnight to get the state’s $5.7 billion budget to third reading. Senators entertained–and dismissed–amendments late into the evening.
In the midst of debate, legislators added an amendment to basically force Governor Mark Sanford to accept part of the $700 million in stimulus funds slated for South Carolina. To date, the governor, using his Congress-given discretionary authority over that money, has refused to take it.
Sanford stalwart Greg Ryberg of Aiken fought against the plan. His alternative budget, also sponsored by Beaufort Senator Tom Davis, was defeated Tuesday.
Some of the most contentious (and fatigue-fueled) arguments centered on funds for public safety versus education. Or one of the President Pro Tem Senator Glenn McConnell’s agenda items, a Capitol Police Force: