Vincent Sheheen wants to be the next Governor of South Carolina. He is currently the Democratic State Senator from District 2. As yet, I am not impressed. He is uttering the same non-descript formula for “change” as every other politician that wants higher office. In other words, he speaks in platitudes and generalities, yet does so in an inspiring way. Oooo, sends tingles up the leg, don’t it?
Haven’t we had enough of substance-less change? When will politicians realize that the age of the sound bite and the vague outlines are over? South Carolinians, along with the rest of America, are waking up to broad brush strokes of meaningless speeches and want real strategies for bettering our state. If you have a plan then spell it out. If you don’t, don’t waste our time with your hollow ramblings.
If nothing else comes out of the Tea Parties and protests, politicians should realize that the people of this country will no longer stand for the vote for a bill without reading it first attitude. This past summer should have been a wake-up call to the ‘party line’ politician. South Carolina has shown it is an issue based constituency, not a party based one. The people will vote for the one who can explain exactly what they intend to do and then sticks by those words.
“As governor, I will personally lead the state’s efforts to recruit robust industry and new jobs,” writes Sheheen in his blog. How, we want to know. Does he have an answer? “I will aggressively pursue economic development opportunities for South Carolina.” Come on, now, he has to do better than that. Pursue how? Which economic opportunities? From South America perhaps? Nope, shouldn’t even go there on that one.
He will overhaul our Commerce Department by stopping cronyism. How? By putting in his own person. Heard that before. But hey, let’s not dwell. Overhaul how? “The Commerce Department will be mandated to pursue as a top priority the recruitment of jobs to our state, using all tools and incentives at our disposal,” he writes. Um, isn’t that the job description anyway? I mean, shouldn’t that be the priority all along? So what exactly is he proposing here?
He wants to increase growth at South Carolina’s ports to “make South Carolina the hub of shipping commerce for years to come.” But isn’t growth the aim of every business? And how is that changed from the current administration’s efforts? The Danish shipping company Maersk Lines just signed a deal to keep some of their business at the Port of Charleston through 2014. So how is his “plan” different? And if it is not, why vote for him?
Another area he has plans for is to utilize our public power more efficiently and effectively. He says “Alternative energy and conservation should be job creators in South Carolina. My Administration will focus on creating an alternative energy economy in our state.” But just how is he planning on doing this. Again, more substance-less statements, more vague generalities. Not really much of a plan.
He wants to promote our technical colleges and develop higher education systems to “fuel economic growth.” How? With higher taxes? Lower tuitions? Well, it seems his plan here is to forge bonds with employers and future employers in order to make the state more attractive to new businesses. And he wants to encourage graduates to stay and work in South Carolina. Although I like the idea, there is no meat to these remarks. they could be said by any wannabe Governor or Senator or elected official. And probably will be; because it is easy to promise the moon when you have no way of getting it. Promises are just words. A plan is made of more sturdier stuff.
Sheheen wants a balanced tax system. He says, “Comprehensive tax reform will be a priority during my first term as Governor.” But what does that mean? Will he lower taxes on new and existing businesses? Will he increase taxes for the average taxpayer? Maybe for anyone making over $250,000 as an example?
South Carolina wants answers. We want a leader who shows leadership and spells out what they want to do. The voters of this state demand more from their Governor and elected representatives than simple platitudes and ‘feel good’ agendas. We want real plans, real answers to our state’s problems. And what we don’t want is some party hack who will listen to political advisors over the state’s voters.
And if you are not ready to spell out what you plan on doing, (specifics, not generalities) then don’t bother coming to the table. We won’t be lured into empty promises again. The people of South Carolina are awake and watching what you say very closely.
Just as a side bar, Sheheen’s Senate record does little to prove he can actually get anything done. His record of passage for any bill he was associated with is dismal, two out of 51 passed. And no Joint resolutions. However, he is great at getting concurrent resolutions and simple resolutions passed. Unfortunately, this shows me that he is great at the minutiae but sorely lacking on the grand plans.
Agree with me or disagree with me. It just seems to me that he has yet to prove he is worthy of the office. Call me a bit premature on this guy or say I’m just calling it as I see it. Either way, it makes no difference to me. Just so long as I get you to think. But hey, this is just me, Thinking out Loud.
Have a great day.
The Economy | Vincent Sheheen for Governor
Wikipedia – South Carolina Gov race 2010
South Carolina Legislature Online