Courts to Gov. Sanford: 'No.'



South Carolina's Gov. Mark Sanford is still kicking and screaming about taking $700 million from the feds in stimulus funds. Why? Because he'd rather pay down the state's debt than help out the state's struggling schools.

Rumor is, he's gearing up for a 2012 presidential run.

Try as he might to leave stimulus money on the table, it appears likely that South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford will be force-fed $700 million from the federal government. On Monday, Sanford lost in his attempt to have a federal court, as opposed to South Carolina’s Supreme Court, hear two lawsuits [1] that seek to force him to accept the stimulus money.

South Carolina is facing a projected $871 million budget deficit [2], and Sanford has stood fast in his assertion that he would accept $700 million in fiscal stabilization money — a subset of stimulus funding that is largely earmarked for education — only if he could use it to pay down existing debt. The state legislature defied Sanford and budgeted the money for education.


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