journal statement concerning adjournment vote on 05.05.2011

“A few minutes ago, a runaway spending train was about to leave the station in the South Carolina Senate. Senators on both sides of the aisle had successfully used the parliamentary rule of cloture to prematurely stop debate on the budget and to stop our efforts to fix what we think are some very bad spending habits. They were about to force a premature vote on the most massive budget in our state’s history, without any consideration of the cumulative effect of the hundreds of budget amendments that had passed in the preceding days or, more importantly, without allowing time for taxpayers to be informed as to how their money was being spent. And so we decided to apply the brakes; we voted to adjourn and to delay the vote on the budget in order to take our case directly to the people of South Carolina.
But while we were able to stop the spending train today, it revs up again next Wednesday. So between now and next Wednesday we will explain to the people of South Carolina what is wrong with this budget and what reforms are needed to how state government spends their money. And because the cloture invoked today was revoked by adjournment prior to a vote on the budget, we will also be able to continue debate on the budget in the Senate. Yes, other important bills must be passed this session — Voter ID, tort reform and illegal immigration, for example – and we are prepared to work day and night for the rest of this legislative session to ensure that they are. But the next few days must be about controlling runaway spending in state government. That is the heart of the problem today in South Carolina, and in America.” Lee Bright, Kevin Bryant, Tom Davis, Larry Grooms, Shane Martin, Phillip Shoopman, Danny Verdin