The Supreme Court will referee another bout of Gov. Mark Sanford vs. state legislators.
Speaker Bobby Harrell and the S.C. House of Representatives have filed a brief against Gov. Mark Sanford. The governor petitioned the South Carolina Supreme Court last week to prevent the state Ethics Commission from releasing preliminary information pertaining to his travel records. The legislature wants to review the findings; the governor says he is entitled to a response first.
Today, the House has requested to become a party to the lawsuit started by the Governor. Speaker Harrell says, “This issue is too important for us allow it to be done in secret. If the Governor succeeds in breaking his promise to keep this process transparent, it will cause all of this to drag on and on. It is time to get this behind us and move on.”
Gov. Sanford waived the right keep the investigation closed to the public. Harrell asserts that the Commission’s investigation should serve as a basis the legislature uses to gauge actions it may deem appropriate.
At issue is whether the legislature serves a “prosecutorial body” in this investigation, having the right to review the evidence. Some legislators say they can because impeachment could result from the probe. The governor’s attorney, Butch Bowers disagrees.