Governor Mark Sanford of South Carolina made a name for himself this year by refusing the federal stimulus money handed out by the Obama Administration. By standing on principle he won the hearts of true conservatives across the country, including myself. However, the governor might be forced to take the money by the courts in his state.
The Wall Street Journal reports:
South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, who defied his own state to reject federal stimulus funding for his struggling government, lost a pivotal decision in federal court and said he now expects to be ordered to request the money.
A federal judge on Monday returned to the state Supreme Court two lawsuits demanding that the governor accept roughly $700 million in federal aid. The state’s high court is scheduled to take up the lawsuits on Wednesday.
Sanford analyzed the situation as follows:
The Republican governor suggested the state court likely will bow to the wishes of state lawmakers, who have ordered him to take the money. “Here we have a Supreme Court picked by the General Assembly,” the governor said. “It looks like we will be bound to spend that money.” He said he would abide by the court’s ruling.
This puts Governor Sanford in a precarious situation, and I might suggest one thing to him: defy the court’s ruling if it is against him. Though this decision would make a dramatic and attention-grabbing statement for fiscal conservatism which could well propel Sanford on his way to the presidency should he choose that route, however, it has the potential downside of creating a further trend of presidents who do not follow the rule of law to advance their own agenda, however admirable (or not).
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