The Center analyzed campaign expenditures and statements of economic interest from the South Carolina Ethics Commission, obtained through public records requests. Center reporters Rachel Baye and Ben Wieder examined filings covering 2009 through mid-2015 from political committees, constitutional officers, state representatives and state senators, as well as candidates seeking those elective offices.
The Center and The Post and Courier reviewed the data to identify notable expenditures, gifts and spending patterns. Post and Courier reporters Tony Bartelme, Doug Pardue, Glenn Smith and David Slade, along with Center reporter Baye, contacted dozens of lawmakers and other officials to discuss the findings and gain additional insight into South Carolina’s ethics laws. Bartelme served as the lead writer on today’s article.
Taken together, this information provides the most comprehensive look yet at how state elected officials and candidates receive perks and spend millions of dollars in campaign cash.