The Charleston Post and Courier ran an article on Thursday that stated how South Carolina House Speaker Bobby Harrell was enjoying life campaigning with the McCain-Palin ticket in Ohio. Insider rumors have Harrell continuing his campaigning for McCain outside of South Carolina.
Normally, I would say, "good for the Speaker." However, we in South Carolina are not in normal times. The Governor and the General Assembly face a budget crisis. According to state economists, the state is going to have a revenue shortfall of over $500 million. That shortfall means real cuts in state government to keep the budget balanced.
While lawmakers and agency heads are scrambling quietly behind the scenes to find a way to deal with the budget crisis, the leader of the South Carolina House is off in some other state campaigning. With all due respect to the Speaker, and to the South Carolina House of Representatives, how many undecided voters in Ohio say to themselves, "Hey here's the Speaker of the South Carolina House, I will vote McCain?"
It is time for the Speaker to stop playing like he is important and come home and be important. Now, doing so might result in making some hard choices and exhibiting real leadership. Perhaps that is too much to ask. Perhaps that is why so many in the know are asking, "where's Bobby?"