Haley calls on Sheheen to drop his clients

Associated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Gov. Nikki Haley's campaign is calling on her Democratic opponent to drop five clients who have cases before magistrates he recommended for the job.

Sen. Vincent Sheheen dismissed Tuesday's request, calling it a desperate political ploy.

It's her campaign's second day of attack following a report in The State newspaper that Sheheen has eight cases pending before Kershaw County magistrates. The cases involve five people. They are accused of speeding, license suspension, marijuana possession, trespassing and third-degree assault.

The practice is not illegal. Sheheen has requested a jury trial in each case.

Under state law, the governor appoints magistrates following senators' recommendations. Sheheen has repeatedly sponsored legislation to instead use the Supreme Court's suggestions.

Campaign manager Andrew Whalen says Sheheen's been leading the effort to reform the magistrate selection process.

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