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June 2 Barbecue

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May 21 meeting


View photos by Tom Hanson

March 19 meetingphotos by Henry Pickard


Kathy (Gingrich) Lubbers, daughter of former Speaker Newt Gingrich, and Karen Santorum, wife of former Sen. Rick Santorum, spoke at the Jan. 16 meeting.Their daughters Elizabeth and Sarah Maria attended and participated. View photo gallery by Judy Kinzer.


SCFRW Convention including Oct. 30 brunch sponsored by the Upstate Republican Women at the Commerce Club. View photo gallery by Judy Kinzer.


South Carolina State Treasurer Curtis Loftis speaks at the Sept. 19 meeting.


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U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint and Rep. Trey Gowdy speak to combined meeting
with the Upstate Republican Women Aug. 31.

Sen. DeMint's address with introduction by South Carolina Rep. Dan Hamilton


Rep. Gowdy's address with introduction by Solicitor Walt Wilkins

DeMint-Gowdy photo gallery.

DeMint: South Carolina delegation best and the brightest in the country

Sen. Jim DeMint told the combined Greenville County and Upstate Republican women’s clubs Wednesday, Aug. 31, that in the debt limit debate we saw character and spine from our South Carolina congressmen that we did not see from Tea Party Republicans all over the country.

“This time last year I was fighting people in Washington about the need to cut spending when even my own Republican colleagues were fighting about how much bacon to take home to their states,” DeMint said. “They were talking about how much more to spend.”

DeMint said Republican office holders had not been true to Republican principles when the party held the presidency and both houses of Congress, and that conservatives thought it would be 10 or 20 years before Americans listened to them again. DeMint said his biggest frustration was not that the Republicans lost in 2006 and 2008, but that the party had not been true to what it had told Americans it would do if it had a majority.

DeMint said that during the 2008 election, he heard all over the country that Americans did not really like Democrats, but that they were frustrated with Republicans. DeMint said he was pummeled for his positions inside Washington, but outside of Washington people thanked him for fighting, told him they were praying for him and asked what they could do.

Republican Party leaders told DeMint he did not understand what was going on in Washington, and that “it is not about principles. It is about the numbers.” DeMint countered that “we got in the minority by believing we could rule by numbers and not by principles,” and that “we get the numbers when we stand for principles.”

DeMint said that the numbers came in in the 2010 elections. “They came into the House. They came into the Senate. We haven’t won the battle yet, and we can’t correct in one election what it took many elections to break,” adding that the South Carolina delegation elected in 2010 is probably “the best and the brightest in the country.”

DeMint was introduced by state Rep. Dan Hamilton, who said DeMint had Tea Party principles before there was a Tea Party, and that according to the Heritage Action Legislative Scorecard, DeMint is the most conservative senator in the U.S. Senate.

Gowdy: Compromise is a one-way street in Washington

Rep. Trey Gowdy told the combined Greenville County and Upstate Republican women’s clubs Wednesday, Aug. 31, that “compromise is only one-way street in Washington.

“They want us to compromise when we are in power, and they can do what they want when they are in power. With civility we must be unyielding in our convictions.”
Gowdy referred to Sen. Jim DeMint, the luncheon’s first speaker, as the father of the modern-day constitutional conservative movement. Gowdy asked that DeMint give prayerful consideration to running for president. He said his dream ticket is either DeMint and Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin or DeMint and Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida.

“Do not underestimate what the NLRB is trying to do to Boeing,” Gowdy said. The NLRB is an unelected, Executive branch entity that is trying to mothball Boeing’s $1 billion plant and send 1,000 jobs from a right-to-work state back to a union state.

“It is gutter-raw politics,” Gowdy said. “It has nothing to do with respect to the rule of law. The next time Boeing is considering whether to expand, it won’t be between Washington state and South Carolina. It will be between Washington state and Brazil or India or China, because they do not have an NLRB. As long as the South Carolina delegation has breath, we will fight the NLRB.”

Darrell Issa, chairman of the House Oversight Committee, allowed the field hearing about Boeing to take place in Charleston, “which created a huge home court advantage for us.”
Gowdy said that Operation Fast and Furious, in which the U.S. Government allowed thousands of weapons to cross into Mexico, which were used to commit heinous, violent crimes, was an “ill-conceived, botched” operation from its inception.

“We are not going to let it go until we find out who in the Department of Justice knew about it, who sanctioned it and who turned a blind eye to it.”

Gowdy said the fact that Rep. Paul Ryan is not on the so-called Super Committee on the budget should tell you to have “very low expectations for what is getting ready to happen.”

While on scores of plant tours, Gowdy is told that Washington must stop creating uncertainty, whether it’s Obamacare, Cap and Trade or Card Check. Don’t make us fearful to expand our businesses, he is told.

Gowdy concluded by saying: “This is still the greatest country on the face of the earth. There is something about the American spirit that has gone from a ragtag band of mercenaries who took on the most powerful army on the face of the earth at the time, which led to the forming of our country, and then cobbling together, as some would say by fate, and I would say the Lord did it, in Philadelphia to get those minds in that room at that time to create our Constitution.

“We have survived presidential assassinations, we have survived Civil War, we have survived the Civil Rights conflict, we have lost scores of our young men on the beaches of other countries so they could enjoy freedom.

“My fear is this, what unites us anymore? We say we are the United States of America, and then all I hear about is diversity. What unites us? I think what unites us is individual liberty. What unites us is a belief in personal responsibility, what unites us is accountability to others, a belief that education and hard work is the pathway to prosperity, not a government handout, a belief in the sanctity of life, an acknowledgement that we must have the Lord direct our steps, or we are not going to make it as a country.”

Gowdy was introduced by Solicitor Walt Wilkins.

Terri Wilfong, Greenville Police Chief, speaks to the Upstate Republican Women July 18.


Butch Kirven, chairman of the Greenville County Council,
speaks at the June 20 luncheon.


View still photo gallery

Lenna Neill, CEO of the Piedmont Women's Center, speaks at the May 16 luncheon


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Rep. Trey Gowdy speaks at the April 18 luncheon


Video Part 2

Video Introductions

Still Photo Gallery

Gowdy: national debt is greatest threat to our way of life

Rep. Trey Gowdy told the Upstate Republican Women at the Poinsett Club April 18 that “the biggest threat to our way of life is our debt” and warned that if you want to straighten the nation’s financial course without talking about entitlement reform, you are not serious.

Gowdy said that President Obama first proposed a budget without entitlement reform, then the Republicans produced Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget with entitlement reform, and then the president produced a budget that raises taxes, while calling the Republicans draconian and accusing them of trying to hurt senior citizens.

Gowdy said that 17 government shutdowns have taken place in our nation’s history but they were called “spending gaps” the first 16 times. Then, during the Clinton administration, adviser Dick Morris said that if they were going to win the battle with then-Speaker Newt Gingrich they would have to call it a government shutdown. They did and the administration won that battle in the public’s eye.

Gowdy said that Speaker John Boehner, with the Republicans controlling only the House, is negotiating having control of one half of one third of the government. Gowdy has voted against the Speaker’s wishes four times, explaining that “I do not challenge his conservative credentials. I just am blessed to come from an area that is prepared to go at [spending cuts] at a faster pace.”

All spending cuts that Congress is considering come from non-defense discretionary spending. If this amount was brought to zero that would just be $600 billion out of a $1.5 trillion debt this year. If interest rates increase, interest on the debt “will explode,” Gowdy said. Defense is the one item in the budget mandated by the Constitution, but many opponents want to start with cuts in defense spending.

Congress is considering raising the debt limit, which, Gowdy said, it has done 74 known times in the past.

LaDonna Ryggs, Spartanburg Republican Party chairman, speaks to the URW March 21, introduced by Vice President Donna Gottschall.



LaDonna Ryggs (left) and URW President Phyllis Foster. View photo gallery.

Rep. Garry Smith speaks to the Upstate Republican Women Feb. 21 about the GOP's state legislative agenda. View photo gallery. Watch video.


Walt Wilkins, newly elected solicitor for Greenville and Pickens counties, speaks to the Upstate Republican Women Jan. 18. View photo gallery.Watch video.



Liz Seman speaks to Upstate Republican Women about Meals on Wheels from Thomas Hanson on Vimeo.

View photo gallery

2011 officers

Outgoing President Suzette Jordan (left) with new officers inducted at Dec. 20 meeting (from left): Treasurer Becky Knoke, President Phyllis Foster, Secretary Ruth Templeton and Vice President Donna Gottschall.

Upstate Republican Women Membership Tea Nov. 15.

Tea Lead

Watch video.

Photo gallery by Kathy Pflug.

Tom Corbin, candidate for SC House District 17, speaks to Upstate Republican Women, Oct. 18

Tom Corbin, candidate for House District 17, told the Upstate Republican Women Oct. 18 that he is pro-life and a Reagan conservative. He called for an end to government policies that kill jobs; an Arizona-type immigration law; and greater transparency in votes by legislators and expenditures by state agencies. View video of Tom Corbin's speech.

From left: Rep. Garry Smith, House District 27; Leann Corbin; Tom Corbin, candidate for SC House District 17; Suzette Jordan, president of the Upstate Republican Women; and Rep. Wendy Nanney, House District 22. View photo gallery.

Rep. Garry Smith on 2010 SC elections from Thomas Hanson on Vimeo.

Karen Floyd, chairman of the South Carolina GOP, spoke to the Upstate Republican Women Sept. 20 about strategy for the Nov. 2 elections. View photo gallery.

From left: Kurt Pickhardt, director of operations for the South Carolina GOP; Mrs. Floyd; Suzette Jordan, president of the Upstate Republican Women; and Jason Greer, field representative for the SC GOP's Victory 2010.

Glenn McCall speaks to Upstate Republican Women Aug. 16 from Thomas Hanson on Vimeo.

Glenn McCall tells Upstate Republican Women:
We look to Greenville to uphold our conservative values (Photo gallery)

Glenn McCall, one of South Carolina’s two national committeemen, told the Upstate Republic Women Aug. 16 that the Greenville County Republican Party is the benchmark that other county Republican parties strive to follow.

“We look to you to uphold our conservative values,” McCall said, citing the leadership of chairman Patrick Haddon and Dan Herren, state executive committeeman.

McCall recounted the efforts of Karen Floyd, state GOP chairman, and his fellow national committeeman Cindy Costa, in their successful efforts at the National Republican Committee summer meeting in Kansas City, Missouri, Aug. 4 to 7 to keep South Carolina’s first in the South presidential primary, which it has held since 1980.

The RNC passed resolutions supporting Arizona’s stance on immigration and to repeal Obamacare and replace it with free market solutions.

McCall said that he and his wife Linda, who attended the meeting with him, get called all sorts of names, but that because of his values and most importantly because of his Christian values, he cannot vote for a person because of color. McCall said he is a Tea Partier, and that the Tea Party movement is not about racism. It is about our Constitution, and the rule of law, he said.

Dr. David Woodard, a professor of political science at Clemson, spoke to the Upstate Republican Women July 19. Here is the photo gallery and here is the complete video.
Here are video excerpts of Dr. Woodard's speech.

Here is a video of introductory comments by President Suzette Jordan, Chaplain Barb Taylor and Vice President Phyllis Foster.

Dr. David Woodard, a political science professor at Clemson, told the Upstate Republican Women July 19 that President Ronald Reagan’s accomplishments are legion: he abolished communism, he stopped inflation and he restored prosperity. But Woodard considers his greatest accomplishment to be that he brought confidence back to the American people.

Woodard, who is writing a book about President Reagan, said that Reagan told Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev at arms reduction talks in Reykjavik, Iceland, in 1986: “I do hope for our children’s sake that we can find some way to avert this terrible arms race, because if we can’t, America will not lose it. I guarantee you that.” Gorbachev eventually backed down.

Woodard said that Reagan adviser Lyn Nofziger said Reagan believed in three things: He believed in God, the American people and himself. Woodard said he considers Ronald Reagan to be the greatest president in his lifetime.

Phyllis Foster, club vice president, introduced Dr. Woodard. Barb Taylor, chaplain, gave the invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance. Suzette Jordan is president of the club.

At the June 21 meeting, the URW heard a debate between incumbent Rep. Bob Inglis and challenger Trey Gowdy the day before the runoff primary. Also present was Bill Connor, candidate for lieutenant governor. Click here for photo gallery.

Rep. Bob Inglis and Solicitor Trey Gowdy debate June 21 from Thomas Hanson on Vimeo.

At the May 17 meeting, the URW heard from candidates Jim Lee, Christina Jeffrey, Henry McMaster, Leighton Lord, Eleanor Kitzman, and Mick Zais. View photo gallery.


At the April 19 meeting the Upstate Republican Women heard from Trey Gowdy, candidate for Congress, Henry McMaster, candidate for governor, Robert Bolchoz, candidate for attorney general, and Walt Wilkins, candidate for solicitor. View photo gallery.

Henry McMaster
Henry McMaster, South Carolina attorney general, spoke about a lawsuit he has filed along with 14 other states’ attorneys general, to have government-mandated health care ruled unconstitutional.

Trey Gowdy
Trey Gowdy, seventh circuit solicitor, and a candidate for the U.S. Congress, said our nation is at a cross roads and that he cannot understand this administration’s rhetoric toward the nation of Israel, once our most treasured ally. “Even Great Britain, a week or so ago, said there is nothing special about their relationship with the United States anymore.”

Gowdy noted that earlier this month a federal judge said the National Day of Prayer was unconstitutional. Government is taking over the banking industry. It is in the automotive industry. It is rewriting the bankruptcy laws to benefit unions. It is threatening to take over the energy industry, and in an unconstitutional fashion they have taken over health care.”

“The decisions we make in the weeks, months and years to come are going to impact what kind of country we pass on to our children and grandchildren,” Gowdy said. “The challenge for us is to win again and when we do win again, to lead differently. I do not want to go down the road to statism and big government. I want to travel down another road: self-determination and personal responsibility, accountability to others and smaller government.”

Gowdy said Republicans must tell voters we believe in American exceptionalism and that we will not apologize for it, peace through strength, that certain cultural guard rails are necessary to keep our culture from falling off the side of a cliff, that the obligations we owe this country exceed any so-called entitlements it owes us.

Robert Bolchoz

Robert Bolchoz said the attorney general is the state’s chief prosecutor and that he has prosecuted almost 1,000 criminal cases; that the attorney general is the state’s chief legal officer and that as chief deputy attorney general he ran the Attorney General’s Office for three years under Charlie Condon; and that the attorney general is the state’s chief securities commissioner, and that he is the only candidate with series seven and 24 security licenses.

Walt Wilkins

Walt Wilkins was appointed a U.S. attorney by President George W. Bush. He left that position to run for 13th circuit solicitor. He is running unopposed.

Wilkins said that the solicitor’s job is to put bad guys in jail and to be a steward of taxpayers’ money, to oversee hundreds of employees and work with clerks of court, judges and defense attorneys. He wants to send a message that Greenville is a pro-business community.

Major Gen. Bob Livingston, candidate for SC adjutant general ( and Craig Hartman, author of Through Jewish Eyes,
speak to the Upstate Republican Women March 15. View photo gallery.

Craig Hartman, URW President Suzette Jordan
Major Gen. Bob Livingston

The adjutant of general is the head of the Army and Air National Guard in the state, and Gen. Livingston said that in South Carolina, the adjutant general is also responsible for the State Guard, which is a voluntary organization that replaces the National Guard in the event of total mobilization, and the Emergency Management division, which serves as a liaison with civilian agencies in the event of a disaster.

Since 9-11 the role of the adjutant general’s office has changed significantly as the National Guard has become an operational reserve rotating land and air forces into the combat theater about once every three or four years. The National Guard is also the fifth largest employer in the state. The adjutant general is the senior military officer in South Carolina, and the governor is the commander in chief.

Gen. Livingston led a division of 9,000 people from 18 nations in Afghanistan training the Afghan army and police. He previously commanded a task force of 8,000 soldiers in the United States who were responsible for military installations east of the Mississippi. He has served as a two star general at the National Guard Bureau, and on the staff of Gen. David Petraeus at Central Command in Tampa, Florida. Gen. Livingston has served in the National Guard for 31 years starting as a private.

Gen. Livingston has been endorsed by the current adjutant general, Stan Spears.

Gen. Livingston’s campaign web site is

Craig Hartman
Craig Hartman is founder of Shalom Ministries in New York City to reach Jewish people ( with the gospel and author of Through Jewish Eyes.

Hartman spoke about the Israeli government approving the building of a new neighborhood in Rabat Shlomo while the U.S. vice president was in Israel, which caused relations between the two countries to deteriorate to the worst point in 35 years.

“It is not a secret that the current administration is trying every way it possibly can to nuzzle up to the Arab world,” Hartman said. Statements made by the U.S. secretary of state to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “will only embolden the enemy to get vicious and violent,” he said, adding that not only is the U.S. administration “showing poor judgment, it is showing a lack of experience and a lack of understanding of true statesmanship, and a lack of understanding of war and evil and violence.”

Hartman went on to say: “I believe that one of the reasons God has so richly blessed America is because America has been a good friend to Israel, and I fear that if we turn our back on Israel maybe we will not enjoy the same blessings we have enjoyed for so long.”

“There is a certain anti-Semitic element here and there is also a pro-Arab element here. Don’t forget that the president of the United States went to Islamic schools as a child,” Hartman said. “There are videos all over the Internet of him talking about his Muslim background and heritage and the importance of the Arab world.” He added, “God says that Israel is the apple of His eye, and certainly anything that God loves the devil is going to hate.”

Phyllis Foster, URW vice president, introduced the speakers. Suzette Jordan is URW president.


Rep. Gresham Barrett, State Sen. David Thomas,
attorney Allen Wilson, Lt. Col. Bill Connor
at Feb. 15 URW Meeting

Sen. David Thomas

Allen Wilson, Bill Connor,
Phyllis Foster

Gresham and Natalie Barrett


Video of Sen. David Thomas
Video of Allen Wilson

Rep. Gresham Barrett, state Sen. David Thomas and attorney Allen Wilson spoke to the Upstate Republican Women at their monthly meeting Feb. 15 at the Poinsett Club.

Bill Connor, a candidate for lieutenant governor, visited the club to meet members and guests. For more information visit Connor’s web site at

President Suzette Jordan led the meeting and Vice President Phyllis Foster introduced the speakers.

Gresham Barrett, candidate for governor
Rep. Barrett, a candidate for governor, said the June primary is not going to be a popularity contest but it is going to be about who has a definitive plan for South Carolina.

Rep. Barrett said: “I believe in God (with him all things are possible), the sanctity of life and that we as leaders must do everything we can to protect that life. I believe that innovation not taxation is the way we solve our energy problems, and that South Carolina can be and should be the nation’s leader when it comes to energy independence.”

He went on to say: “I believe in the Second Amendment, the Constitution of the United States and the constitution of this great state. I believe in spending the taxpayers’ dollars wisely and I will not raise taxes as governor to pay for the government of South Carolina. I believe your health care decisions are best left to you and your doctor, not some bureaucrat sitting behind a desk in Washington, D.C.

“I believe in hard work, personal freedom, devotion to family and service to country.”
Barrett concluded: “I believe collectively we can take South Carolina to somewhere she has never been before.” For more information visit Rep. Barrett’s web site at

David Thomas, candidate for Congress
Sen. David Thomas recounted his financial reform efforts in the South Carolina legislature and committed to pursue similar changes in Washington. He warned that the only way the U.S. Congress can rein in out of control spending is to raise taxes substantially and inflate the money supply, which will bring on massive percent inflation.

A third solution would be to control spending, but, “believe me, the Democrats are not going to talk about controlling spending.”

Sen. Thomas, the son of a Baptist preacher, said he was in church every Sunday and Wednesday, and that his dad and mom taught him right vs. wrong out of the Bible.

Allen Wilson, candidate for attorney general
Allen Wilson said he is a conservative Republican, pro-life, pro-business, favors small government and is a strict constructionist on Constitutional issues. He mentioned his passion for public service, leadership and for prosecution. He and his three brothers are Eagle Scouts, and all are commissioned officers in the military.

Wilson is a veteran of the Iraqi War, where he led soldiers in combat. “I know what it is like to be shot at, and I know what it is like to have to shoot back,” he said. “It is not fun.”

Eighteen sheriffs, some of whom are Democrats, have endorsed Wilson for attorney general. No other sheriff has endorsed any of the other candidates.

Wilson served as a prosecutor in the 11th circuit Solictor’s Office in Lexington. His main goal if elected attorney general is to keep South Carolinians safe. His work experience as a prosecutor has taught him how to lead a prosecution team and manage a criminal docket, duties the attorney general must perform. For more information visit the Allen Wilson campaign site at


Rep. Bob Inglis and Dr. Brent Nelsen speak
to Upstate Republican Women Jan. 19.

Rep. Bob Inglis
Dr. Brent Nelsen

Rep. Bob Inglis and Dr. Brent Nelsen, candidate for state superintendent of education, speak to the Upstate Republican Women Jan. 19. Click here for photo gallery.

Reps. Nikki Haley and Tim Scott speak
to Upstate Republican Women Dec. 15.

Suzette Jordan and Tim Scott
Nikki Haley and Brenda Schoolfield

Rep. Nikki Haley, candidate for governor, and Rep. Tim Scott, candidate for lieutenant governor, spoke to the Upstate Republican Women Dec. 15. Betty Poe, incoming president of the South Carolina Federation of Repubican Women, installed new officers for 2010-2011. Click here for photo gallery.

David Wilkins, U.S. ambassador to Canada under President George W. Bush, and former Speaker of the South Carolina House, spoke to the Upstate Republican Women Nov. 17.
Click here for photo gallery.

David Wilkins speaks on why America must lead from Thomas Hanson on Vimeo.


State Sen. Larry Grooms, a candidate for governor, and Ken Ard, a Florence County Councilman and candidate for lieutenant governor, speak to the Upstate Republican Women Oct. 20. Click here for photo gallery.

Upstate Republican Women at South Carolina Federation of Republican Women convention in Beaufort Oct. 16 to. 18.

Converse Chellis, South Carolina treasurer, speaks to the Upstate Republican Women Sept. 15. Click here for photo gallery.

URW Cut the Pork Barbecue Aug. 25 photo gallery

Rep. Gresham Barrett speaks to the Upstate Republican Women Aug. 18
Click here for photo gallery.
Rep. Gresham Barrett gave a Washington update to the Upstate Republican Women’s Club Aug. 18 in the Poinsett Club. Rep. Barrett noted that the average utility bill for a South Carolina family is $150 a month, but if the Cap and Trade bill passes Congress in its present form and is signed into law those bills will rise to $400. Rep. Barrett said that Democrats on the Energy and Commerce Committee unanimously voted down an amendment by Phil Gingery (R-Ga.) to the health care reform bill that would have mandated that medical decisions be made between you and your doctor, not between you and a government bureaucrat.

Rep. Gresham Barrett comments on Cap and Trade and Health Care from Thomas Hanson on Vimeo.


Rep. Harry Cato, speaker pro tem, addresses URW July 21
Sen. Larry Grooms talks about his campaign for governor
Joyce Smart runs for at large seat on Greenville City Council
In attendance were Sen. David Thomas (candidate for the Fourth District U.S. House seat), Rep. Eric Bedingfield (candidate for re-election), and Dean Allen, candidate for state adjutant general. Click here for photos.

Rep. Harry Cato
Speaker Pro Tem
District 17 Greenville County

Sen. Larry Grooms

Joyce Smart
City Council Candidate
District 37
Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester

Gubernatorial Candidate


Jamie Bach from the Office of the Governor speaks about
the Governor's Budget battles with the General Assembly

Jamie Bach speaks to the Upstate Republican Women May 19 about Gov. Mark Sanford's budget battles with the South Carolina General Assembly and urges members to contact their legislators and urge them to support the Governor. The Governor vetoed major portions of the state budget and legislators were considering whether to sustain or override those vetoes. Click here for photo gallery.

Ashley Landess gives spirited address
against accepting stimulus money at April meeting

Ashley Landess, president of the South Carolina Policy Council, spoke about refusing stimulus money at the April 21 luncheon at the Poinsett Club. Click here for photo gallery.

Henry McMaster tells Upstate GOP women
Abolish parole: No revolving door for criminals

Click here for photo gallery.
Henry McMaster, the South Carolina attorney general, told Upstate Republican Women meeting at the Poinsett Club March 17 that the state legislature is wrestling with budget cuts, and that tax revenues are not coming in as they did previously. He noted that the state’s unemployment rate is second highest in the nation.

McMaster says abolish parole
from Thomas Hanson on Vimeo

McMaster, an unannounced candidate for governor, wants to abolish parole in South Carolina like in Virginia and other states. Criminals, except for those convicted of committing violent crimes, would have to serve at least 85 percent of their sentence before appearing before the parole board.

Currently a prisoner can go before the parole board after serving 25 percent to one third of his sentence depending on the crime. A sexual predator serving a 10 year sentence can get out after 22 months. McMaster cited an example of family members of a murdered man who appeared before the parole board 22 times to ensure that the murderer was not given parole.

McMaster also proposes a middle court process for non-violent, non-sexual and non-drug crimes to give judges a third option in addition to prison time or probation. The middle court would have a volunteer judge meeting at night. The process would last at least18 months during which time the offender must work, go to school, get a GED, do community service or pay restitution. He or she must then appear in court once a week to explain compliance with demands. The judge could send the offender back to jail for short periods of time if these demands are not met.

McMaster detailed the lawsuit the state has filed against North Carolina for diverting water that flows into South Carolina from the Catawba River.

North Carolina pumps water out of the Catawba and sends it to cities that use it and return it to a water system that does not enter South Carolina. North Carolina refused to listen to repeated requests from various South Carolina officials to change their policies, so South Carolina asked the U.S. Supreme Court to sit as a trial court in this matter. Though the Supreme Court has only done this 137 times since the court was created in 1789, in 2007 it agreed to take the case.

This case could set a precedent for South Carolina’s water battles with Georgia. The City of Savannah is pumping so much water out of the aquifer that extends into South Carolina that salt water is intruding into it affecting water quality in Beaufort and Jasper counties and at Edisto Beach. This case needs funding from the South Carolina Assembly.

Karen Floyd, a candidate for chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party, spoke briefly at the close of the meeting. She noted the 82 percent success rate the party has in elections, and that the party needs to continue to be pro-life, support social conservative issues and second amendment gun rights, and be fiscally conservative
Floyd received a Friends of the Taxpayer award when she served as chairman of the Spartanburg county council.

Feb. 16 meeting: Constituents thank Sen. Jim DeMint for fighting

Click here for photo gallery.

When Sen. Jim DeMint dropped by to address the Upstate Republican Women’s luncheon meeting Jan. 16 at the Poinsett Club, he was met with a standing ovation. The visibly moved senator said the standing ovation was like “getting an infusion of energy,” as “Washington is sucking the life out of me.”

The senator went on to say that “a few years ago people would say, why didn’t you do this or why didn’t you do that, now they just grab my arm and say, ‘Thanks for fighting.’ ”

The senator said that the nation’s only hope is that people and groups be informed and activated and start calling their government to account. He goes to talk radio and Fox News to make his case directly to the American people.

During last year’s debate over immigration reform, GOP congressional leaders gave copies of the legislation to talk show hosts and bloggers, which they read, posted on the web and told their listeners what was contained in the bill. In response, millions of angry Americans called or e-mailed their representatives and defeated that bill.

GOP leaders did the same with legislation about earmarks and the offshore drilling moratorium. Sen. DeMint said that this has even helped put a spine in some Republican legislators who were sitting on the sidelines waiting to see which way the wind would blow.

“We can decide which way the wind blows if we let Americans know what is really going on,” he said.

Sen. DeMint said that a lot of people in Washington do not understand that people make the economy work, and that free markets, not the government, create jobs. The President and his advisers have not participated in the private markets, started their own businesses and signed the front of a paycheck.

“I think most Americans understand intuitively that something is wrong, Sen. DeMint said, and “as long as we have people out here who believe, we can turn things around no matter what Washington does.”

Rep. Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.), the House Majority Whip, has promised to make Sen. DeMint a project for defeat when he runs for reelection in 2010. “Many think that South Carolina moved to the left in the last election,” Sen. DeMint said. “We need to show them that South Carolina hasn’t.”

Sen. DeMint said that in Mark Sanford, “we have a governor who understands that you cannot spend your way out of problems. You have to set priorities and cut spending and create a good business environment. I think he is pulling a lot of the legislature along with him, some kicking and screaming, but he is out there fighting for what I think is the right cause for Republicans.”

Sen. DeMint asked URW members to go onto his web site at and subscribe to his e-mail updates. He wants to counter negative campaign ads in the coming campaign, which he said will accuse him of voting against children, veterans and farmers. With several hundred thousand e-mails, he can have a readership larger than all the newspapers in the state.

Rep. Bob Inglis, who was at the Poinsett Club for another meeting, greeted the Upstate Republican Women, before the senator arrived.

After Sen. DeMint spoke, Samuel Harms, Greenville County GOP chairman, spoke to the group about the Republican county and state conventions and about a lawsuit he is filing on behalf of the party to end South Carolina’s open party primary system that allows members of either party to vote in the other party’s primary elections.

Betty Poe, the Greenville County GOP first vice chair, spoke about precinct reorganization meetings to take place March 2 at 7 p.m. at polling locations.

Kevin Hall, candidate for state GOP chairman, visited the meeting and talked with URW members and guests.

Suzette Jordan, URW president, chaired the meeting.

Deb Sofield speaks at Jan. 20 meeting

Deb Sofield, a member of the Commission of Public Works, discussed the Greenville Water System at our Jan. 20 meeting.

The commission had its beginnings in the early part of the 20th century with a group of citizens who were concerned about the need of water in the area. That group later became the Commission of Public Works, of which Deb was the first female member. She was appointed to the commission by Mayor Knox White and was elected to the board in a citywide election in 2007.

The water system owns and protects three water sources made up of 30,000 acres of watershed: the Table Rock and Poinsett reservoirs and Lake Keowee. They provide water to Greenville as well as many of the towns in the surrounding area. They use a process of treating the water, the Dissolved Air Flotation (DAF) treatment system, that instead of allowing impurities to settle on the bottom of the water source uses air bubbles to float impurities to the surface where they are skimmed off.

The commission is dedicated to protecting our resources and keeps trespassers out of the watersheds. Deb reminded us that the signs that warn people to stay out of the area mean what they say.

The 2009 budget was also presented and approved.

Upstate Women hear from Susan Reynolds, Amy Ryberg-Doyle,
install 2009 officers at Dec. 16 meeting

Kathy Sheppard signed her new book
I Lost My Husband, Not My Mind

Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer speaks
to Upstate Republican Women Oct. 21

Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer said that the state’s current budget shortfall that prompted Gov. Mark Sanford to call the state legislature back into session “makes Republicans remember why we are Republicans.”

At every level of government, Republicans have been elected Republicans who haven’t acted as Republicans. Bauer said he was elected to rule out tax increases and that the South Carolina government already has more money than it needs.

Bauer made these comments to the Upstate Republican Women meeting at the Poinsett Club Oct. 21.

“One thing that always united us as a party since my mother started dragging me to Republican women’s club meetings back when Goldwater was around,” Bauer said, “was that we thought that government could run more efficiently for less dollars.”
It was easy to differentiate between Republicans and Democrats, he said, because Democrats wanted to grow every social program. Republicans argued that there were many things government should not be involved in, that faith-based organizations, family, friends and neighborhoods should help people out when they have problems.

 “We have a lot of people who used to be Democrats who are now Republicans,” Bauer said. “We want to be a big tent party, but when we welcome these folks we must be sure we do not give up our essential values just to get new members.”

Bauer said that Gov. Dick Riley (1979-1987) promised that if he got a one cent tax increase he would solve all the education woes, and President Bill Clinton even made him his secretary of education. “I’m going to clue you in on a little secret,” Bauer said. “We are still in the same place we were 30 years ago. That penny hasn’t fixed it. You can spend all the money in the world, but if you do not have discipline, if you do not have structure, if you do not have an authoritative figure in the teacher, you are not going to change that environment,” adding that “when they took God out of the schools you can look at the test scores and see a dramatic decline in what has happened over the years.”

Bauer said that people who receive goods and services from the government ought to give something back, such as those who receive government help for their children should be mandated to attend parent-teacher conferences.

 “I can’t read Lyndon Johnson’s mind,” Bauer said. “He is still my second least favorite president, but maybe his intentions were good. Maybe he really thought that mothers who were left by men needed help, and that is understandable, but we are finding six generations deep now of aid to independent mothers that took a family and rewarded them only if the male left. So there were families who wanted to stay together but the financial incentive was to get the man to leave and have more children. So we incentivized bad behavior.”  

Bauer said that politicians don’t want to offend anyone, but that we must have backbones to make a change in politics.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee told Bauer that when he was lieutenant governor in Arkansas he was basically like the spare tire on your car. It is kept out of the way, in the dark and all pumped up just in case they need you.

Four years ago Gov. Sanford and the legislature helped Bauer with a campaign promise to increase the duties of the lieutenant governor to be more than just a glorified ribbon cutter. Bauer had just lost both his paternal grandparents, and he was offered the Office on Aging, which administers everything from Meals on Wheels to hurricane evacuations and nursing home investigations.

South Carolina is now the fifth largest state for in-migration of seniors. Six states this year modeled South Carolina legislation. Bauer said that people are looking to us and saying, What are they doing in South Carolina?

Bauer has been pushing law enforcement and media to pick up what is called a Silver Alert, like an Amber alert. When a person demonstrates he cannot take care of himself, and if they go missing, we would put out a Silver alert.

Bauer has conducted 13 listening sessions with seniors on how they have been taken advantage of by senior fraud. Bauer said: “We will make the message clear. If you take advantage of seniors in South Carolina we will try to put you in jail.”

Bauer said his 2006 light plane crash was probably the best thing that ever happened to him because it let him experience what it was like to be disabled. “It let me see exactly what it was like to ask others for help,” Bauer said. “A lot of you prayed for me and I appreciate it.”

Bauer was introduced by Vice President Donna Gottshall. Suzette Jordan is president of the club.

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Join us for our next luncheon meeting, Tuesday, Feb. 19, at noon at the Poinsett Club in downtown Greenville.
Our speaker will be
Parks Evans,
Greenville County Coroner

Please RSVP by noon,
Thursday, Feb. 14, to

Lunch is $16*
Reservations are required.

Phyllis Foster, president
Donna Gottschall, vice president
Ruth Templeton, secretary
Susan Brinkerhoff, treasurer
Suzette Jordan,
president ex officio

Greenville County Republican Party
South Carolina Republican Party
South Carolina Federation of Republican Women
National Federation of Republican Women
The Times Examiner
South Carolina Conservative

State of the State Address, Jan. 14: Rep. Wendy Nanney (standing), Cheryl Cowart (left) and Suzette Jordan.
Rep. Nikki Haley (left) with Brenda Schoolfield.
Lenna Neill with Rep. Tim Scott
Attorney Gen. Henry McMaster
and Katie Wiederman