Palmetto Sunrise: South Carolina’s Mentally Ill

 An inmate peers through his cell door at the Gilliam Psy­chiatric Hospital. He is being held in a section designed for acute treatment, where inmates are monitored at 15­-minute intervals  Paul Zoeller/Staff

Photo: Paul Zoeller/Staff

Earlier this week, The Post and Courier published a series of articles detailing South Carolina’s prison mental illness crisis.

Our editor’s note detailed how for years the state has thrust mentally ill people who commit crimes into prisons where they receive incon­sistent treatment and have been sub­ject to abuse and neglect. Their plight received little attention until this year when a circuit judge issued a scathing order in a nearly decade-old lawsuit demanding that state prison officials fix the problem.

Continue reading

Shealy is still upset over Facebook spat with Haley

Sen. Katrina Shealy

Sen. Katrina Shealy

Sen. Katrina Shealy, R-Lexington, is still upset over a spat she and Gov. Nikki Haley got into on social media on Wednesday, after Haley accused Shealy of spreading rumors.

In an update she posted Thursday afternoon, Shealy said “someone” was trying to divert attention from all of the issues raised during a Senate panel hearing regarding DSS with a “Facebook Slam.”

Continue reading

Haley has double digit lead, Rasmussen poll shows

      • gov-300x2272 (2)

Republican Gov. Nikki Haley holds a double-digit lead over Democratic challenger Vincent Sheheen in Rasmussen Reports’ first look at the 2014 gubernatorial rematch in South Carolina, according to results out today.

      A new statewide telephone survey of likely South Carolina voters finds Haley with 52 percent support to 37 percent for Sheheen.
      Three percent like some other candidate in the race, and seven percent are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
      The survey of 750 Likely Voters in South Carolina was conducted on April 14-15, 2014 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.


Palmetto Sunrise: DSS head Lillian Koller testifies

DSS head Lillian Koller.

DSS head Lillian Koller.

The embattled director of the Department of Social Services, Lillian Koller, was grilled yesterday by a Senate committee made up of some lawmakers who have called for her to step down.

As the Post and Courier’s Cynthia Roldan reported, Koller appeared to hold firm. Her testimony came as the agency has been accused of mismanaging cases and failing to step in to save the life of a child when it should have.  Continue reading

Crawford endorses Childs for top schools chief

Charmeka Childs

Charmeka Childs

Superintendent of education candidate Charmeka Childs has received the endorsement of another South Carolina lawmaker.

Childs’ campaign announced Wednesday through a written release Rep. Kris Crawford, R-Florence, backs Childs in the crowded superintendent of education race. Crawford said in the release Childs is the most qualified candidate for the position.

Continue reading

McMaster on Winthrop Alzheimer’s statistics

Henry McMaster, one of four Republicans running for lieutenant governor, issued a statement in reaction to the recent Winthrop Poll that shows nearly one in five South Carolinians has a family member suffering from Alzheimer’s or another form of dementia.

“This poll confirms that a ‘Grey Tsunami’ is bearing down on us,” his campaign statement said.

” More and more of our seniors and their families are unable to meet these challenges alone and a costly and broken Medicaid system is not the answer,” said McMaster for Lt. Governor Campaign Manager Jeff Taillon. “Henry is the experienced and proven leader who can ensure from day one that our Office on Aging is the first line of defense for these families.”



T-Rav: I can beat Graham

New papa and former state treasurer Thomas Ravenel says results in the latest Winthrop University statewide poll shows “Lindsey Graham can be beat – and I’m the guy that’s going to beat him.”

“South Carolina voters know Lindsey Graham isn’t representing their interests – he’s representing the Washington D.C. insiders who are bankrolling his $8 million reelection campaign,” Ravenel said in a statement Wednesday. “They also know the Democrats in the U.S. Senate – with whom Graham so frequently aligns – aren’t representing their interests either. They are bought and sold just like he is.

“Voters cannot trust either party to do what’s best for them. They need an independent voice – one that isn’t beholden to any party or bureaucratic establishment.

“I cannot be bought. I don’t need anybody’s money. My only loyalty will be to your bottom line as a taxpayer – and the bottom line of our children and grandchildren.

“This poll shows Lindsey Graham can be beat – and I’m the guy that’s going to beat him.”

The results show 39.6 percent of registered voters approve of Graham’s job performance, while 43.8 percent disapprove, according to the poll that was in the field last week.

Ravenel, who’s political career ended with his federal cocaine arrest, says he will run against Graham as an independent if Graham wins the GOP primary June.

He and his girlfriend announced a new baby this week.


Palmetto Sunrise: Answers expected from DSS head Lillian Koller

The S.C. statehouse.

The S.C. statehouse. File photo.

The long-awaited testimony of the head of the Department of Social Services is expected this morning in front of a Senate panel that will likely have a lot of pointed questions.

The panel has already taken testimony that has prompted several senators to call for DSS director Lillian Koller to step down or be fired. Richland County Coroner Gary Watts had recounted a story about 4-year-old Robert Guinyard Jr. of Richland County.: Despite 15 reports of possible abuse to the agency from the home where he was living,  the infant died there. Continue reading