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SC pols fight over republican brand (Sanford vs. Graham)

My apologies if this has already been posted. In the first video below, Lindsey Graham is seen giving a speech at the SC Republican Convention. In the speech, he has this to say:

“I am not a libertarian. If you are, you’re welcome to vote for me and help this party, but we’re not going to build this party around libertarian ideals.”

That is an interesting comment to be making at a convention where the essential head of the SC republican party would be its governor, Mark Sanford. Sanford is an unabashed libertarian whose belief in limited government libertarianism is so strong that he recently sued the republican-led state legislature after they voted to require him to take all of President Obama’s stimulus money. That money includes $700 million that would be extremely detrimental to the state with expensive educational mandates from the federal government. Sanford wants to spend that money paying down the state’s debt so they will have more money to spend on education in the future rather than spending it on interest payments. Anyway, Sanford had this response for Graham, just moments after Lindey’s speech:

“Sen. Graham spoke and said ‘I’m not a libertarian and whatever, whatever …’ as if that’s an evil word,” Sanford said. “Liberty is the hallmark of the American experiment. (It) is the distinguishing characteristic of our Republic and frankly what’s made it great.”

Which of these two viewpoints would you like to see adopted by the national party? That’s the debate going on with republican politicians in South Carolina at the moment. I side with Governor Sanford and think he’d be an excellent 2012 candidate should he choose to run.

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