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Press Release: Noble: Too Little, Too Late: Entire Santee Cooper Board Should be Fired, Special Prosecutor Appointed

(Charleston, SC – December 11, 2017) – Democratic gubernatorial candidate Phil Noble says Governor Henry McMaster is dragging his feet on restoring confidence in Santee Cooper in the wake of a massive scandal that has jeopardized the future capacity of the state’s power grid and cost South Carolinians billions.

“The entire Board needs to go, and a special prosecutor with broad investigatory powers appointed,” Noble said. “Having an ethically-challenged governor investigate a scandal-ridden agency for its role in the biggest corporate crime in state history does not exactly inspire optimism.”

Noble said that corporate officials of SCANA and executives at Santee Cooper should at least return their pay and bonuses since they first found out the V.C. Summer nuclear station project was in trouble. Noble said McMaster’s current feud with Santee Cooper Chairman Leighton Lord is little more than a “hissing contest between the Trump and Bannon wings of the state Republican Party.”

The collapse of the nuclear project resulted in the loss of nearly 6,000 jobs at a cost to customers and taxpayers of at least $9 billion.

Press Release: Democrat Phil Noble Calls for End of PACs To Fight Corruption

Challenges Opponents to Stop Taking Special Interest Money

(Kiawah Island, SC) – Today at the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce’s Gubernatorial Candidate Forum, Democratic candidate Phil Noble called for an end to state political action committees (PACs) and challenged the other candidates to follow his lead.

In his remarks to the Chamber, Noble said, “Two years ago after the Emanuel Nine shooting, the Chamber led the effort to take down the Confederate flag from the statehouse. I’m asking the Chamber to show this same bold leadership today and close their PAC and encourage other business organizations to the do the same.”

Citing the ongoing statehouse corruption scandal, the related nuclear scandal and the millions spent by PACs on political contributions, Noble said, “There is a disease of corruption in the statehouse and it is contagious, infectious and its spreading. PACs are a big part of this corruption and we should end them today.”

Noble said that he was the only candidate, Democrat or Republican who has refused PAC money. “I know that this puts me at a disadvantage in the campaign but a leader should lead and I’m leading on this and I hope that other candidates will follow”, said Noble. “It’s the right thing to do for our state.”

Talking with members of the media after the Forum, Noble outlined two reforms he believes are essential to restoring integrity to the state legislature and the Governor’s office:

  1. No office holder who takes PAC money should be part of any investigation or decision making affecting organizations related to the PAC.
  2. If you take money from a PAC, you should be forced to recuse yourself from any vote that affects the organization affiliated with the PAC.

Noble cited the example of the current statehouse utilities investigation saying, “There are 32 members of the Legislature on committees investigating the utilities scandal and news report show that every one of them took campaign money from utilities. That’s a clear conflict of interest.”

Campaign Update: Making Waves and Making Progress

Since I announced last month, we’ve been making waves and making progress!

Here’s what I’ve been doing:

First and foremost, we have established our candidacy as the one true Democratic independent reformer – determined to fight the corrupt statehouse crowd that is giving us broken and dysfunctional politics.

Second, we have refused to accept political action committee (PAC) money that is corrupting our politics. I’m the only candidate – Democrat or Republican – who has refused PAC money.

Third, we called for the Attorney General to appoint an independent special prosecutor to investigate SCE&G, Santee Cooper and the legislature about the $9 billion nuclear scandal to determine if laws have been broken – and send people to jail if they have.

Fourth, we took a bold stand on health care reform and demanded that Gov. McMaster accept the federal Medicaid funds to provide decent health care for over 123,000 South Carolinians who do not have it now.

Fifth, we launched a petition challenging members of the legislature to return the contributions they have received from the utility companies. Only four members – two Democrats and two Republicans – have done so. I’m not going to stop demanding big change and real reform until South Carolina taxpayers get their money back and their rates lowered, and those that are responsible for this mess (including our placid and sometimes corrupt legislators) are held responsible.

The campaign itself has been going very well. After the launch, we’ve had some great events, and I’ve gotten enormous support from people all over this state who are dissatisfied with corrupt statehouse politics and are ready for reform.

I am not the candidate of the Democratic establishment – they will provide big endorsements and big money to elect someone else.
I’m the underdog but I’m getting great grassroots support because Democrats are simply tired of losing, time after time, with the same kinds of candidates. They want someone that isn’t beholden to special interests and PACs or to the standard lobbyist-derived money sources that have controlled our politics for too long.

We’re getting positive media coverage and I know that as we move forward our message of reform and accountability will resonate among voters who clearly feel both are needed.

I can’t thank you enough for this opportunity. If you can make a donation here today, I’d be grateful.

– Phil

SC Court Sentences our Children to a Lifetime of Ignorance

The South Carolina Supreme Court has just issued a decision about the education reform case, also known as the Abbeville case, that is so bad it is hard to overstate its severity.

It is cruel, heartless and wrong and will sentence our children to a lifetime of ignorance unless we elect a governor committed to fixing it.

Here is what happened and why it is so bad:

In 1993, 40 of the state’s poorest school districts with the worst performing schools sued the state to get adequate funding to improve their schools. Because the first school district on the alphabetized list was Abbeville, it became known as the Abbeville Case. And, because the schools were all generally in one region of the state, they become known as the “Corridor of Shame” schools.

In 2014, after 21 years of legal wrangling, the SC Supreme Court ruled – by a 3-2 vote – that the schools were not ‘minimally adequate’. They told the legislature to fix the schools but did not specify how or a timetable.

Since 2014, the legislature has done practically nothing on the issue. They delayed action, knowing well that two of the Supreme Court Justices that voted for the schools were to retire soon, and so that they could appoint new justices likely to be favorable to continued inaction that would oppose the reforms.

That is exactly what happened.

In Tuesday’s decision, the SC Supreme Court essentially said ‘we don’t care if we sentence our children to ignorance in a failing school’s system.’

It’s the worst kind of evil… couched in law.

It doesn’t have to be this way – you can do something:

The other candidates for Governor are part of the same machine that let this happen. And so far, they’re characteristically quiet about this topic.

It’s if they are saying, “we don’t care about our children and their future.”

Well, I do and I know you do too… and that’s why I’m asking for your help in fighting for our children and their future.

Please, send a donation now – so I can continue my campaign for governor and continue our fight for our children.

No, Ms. Templeton. Bannon does not speak for us.

Catherine Templeton says Steve Bannon speaks for the people of South Carolina. With respect, he does not and never will.

Bannon appeals to the worst instincts of our state and nation. This is a man who refers to himself as Satan and Darth Vader. Ms. Templeton, by aligning yourself with him, you are embracing the dark heart of fear and prejudice that has divided our state’s politics almost from the beginning.

Neo-Nazis do not speak for South Carolina. Racists do not speak for South Carolina. Steve Bannon has given both of them platforms through which their hatred for American values has gone mainstream.


Have you seen your 2018 health care costs?

Thanks to Donald Trump and Henry McMaster, health care for South Carolinians will cost more in 2018 than ever before.

Trump’s erratic attacks on the Affordable Care Act have resulted in a staggering loss of competition in all health insurance markets in South Carolina. That, in turn, has driven up monthly premiums for everyone. Some of us will see increases of more than 30%.


Press Release: Utility Campaign Contributions To Charity

Charleston, SC – Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Phil Noble today, called for all elected officials in the Statehouse who received donations from SCE&G or the Co-ops to give those monies to charity and also launched an online petition to gather support.

According to news reports, all 32 members of the special House and Senate committees looking into the nuclear debacle are compromised by their campaign contributions from the utilities. The Co-ops and SCANA are considered to be among the top ten biggest lobbying organizations in the state and in recent years have given millions of dollars in campaign contributions to statehouse politicians in both parties.

“It’s like asking Colonel Sanders to guard the chicken house,” Noble said. “These investigations are a carefully orchestrated charade by the Statehouse crowd to make the public think they are doing something, after years of looking the other way. It appears this so-called investigation is turning out to be more of a political whitewash than a real investigation.”


Press Release: Statement on Lobbyists Indictments

In his announcement to run for governor last Wednesday, Phil Noble said, “Too many of our State House politicians have been infected with the contagious disease of corruption. Its symptoms have not just contaminated the halls of our State House but have spread thoughout our state, and stopped us from becoming the state that we were meant to be.”

Noble was right then, and today’s news proves he is right again – and it will continue to get worse.

In reaction to today’s new indictments, Noble said, “We are only at the beginning of the beginning of this corruption scandal. I expect many more indictments and the numbers I hear are that another 10 to 15 more legislators may be indicted. Who knows where this will end?”


People Should Go To Jail.

It’s corrupt, it’s wrong, and people should go to jail over it.

South Carolina’s utility companies have squandered billions from customers like you and I… and, with the help of our state government, are now trying to make up for these losses by charging it back to us.

It is one of the central themes of my candidacy for Governor: We must make the utility companies pay, and make sure the boards of Santee Cooper and South Carolina Power and Gas are sent packing – possibly to prison – without their golden parachutes.


I’m Running for Governor

I’m excited to tell you that I’ve launched my campaign for Governor of South Carolina as a proud and true Democrat.

My name is Phil Noble and I’m running for Governor because I believe that we need real change and real reform – right now.