The South Carolina Supreme Court has suspended the law license of a former legislator facing a criminal conspiracy charge.
In a court order Wednesday, the justices said former State Rep. Jim Harrison of Columbia agreed to the interim suspension until his legal issues are settled. The attorney served as a Republican the House for 23 years, including as chairman of the powerful Judiciary Committee. The committee’s approval was almost always needed for any legislation altering the state’s criminal or constitutional laws.
The State Grand Jury indicted Harrison last week on conspiracy charges. First Circuit Solicitor David Pascoe, who is leading the investigation, accused Harrison of taking payments from political consultant Richard Quinn to influence his vote on certain bills. Harrison was listed as a part-time employee of Quinn’s consulting firm. Pascoe said Harrison was paid $900,000 over several years, but never disclosed the income despite guiding legislation through the House which benefitted Quinn or his clients.
Harrison has also been suspended from his position on The Citadel military academy’s Board of Visitors and in his job at the Legislative Council providing research and legal support for the state House and Senate. He has maintained he did nothing wrong and did not view the job as bribery.