Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is wrapping up his first tour of early voting states as a presidential candidate, showcasing his personal side in South Carolina with a lighthearted sit-down with his wife and an emotional moment with a military spouse. DeSantis, whose whirlwind tour this week included stops in Iowa and New Hampshire, used his first stop Friday morning in Bluffton to respond to knocks from Donald Trump, who boasted that he could accomplish in six months what would take the governor eight years. DeSantis told voters it can't be done “in 24 hours or six months or anything like that” but described the mission of the next Republican president as “trench warfare.”
Community members are grieving the death of a 14-year-old boy who authorities say was fatally shot in the back by a South Carolina gas station owner. A Friday evening prayer vigil across the street from the Xpress Mart Shell station in Columbia featured calls to channel righteous anger into community support and political action. The station owner Rick Chow is accused of killing Cyrus Carmack-Belton on Sunday night after chasing down the teenager, who he wrongly suspected of stealing four water bottles. The shooting leaves many in the community also crying out against racial profiling.
Three chemical manufacturing companies have reached a deal to resolve complaints of polluting many U.S. drinking water systems with compounds known as PFAS. DuPont and spinoff companies Chemours and Corteva said Friday they'll create a $1.18 billion fund that could compensate thousands of public water systems. PFAS chemicals are used widely in nonstick and water-resistant products, as well as some firefighting foams. Many water providers have sued the three DuPont companies and others that made or used the compounds. A federal judge must approve the settlement before it takes effect.
Trump and DeSantis jab at each other on campaign trail in 1st dueling appearances as 2024 candidates
Former President Donald Trump is keeping up a steady drumbeat of criticism of his chief Republican rival, Ron DeSantis. Trump on Thursday jumped on remarks by the Florida governor on the campaign trail to try to highlight the former president's own strength as the leading GOP presidential candidate. Trump appeared in Iowa as DeSantis campaigned in New Hampshire. Trump made a point of telling about 200 members of a conservative club gathered at a Des Moines-area restaurant they could ask him questions. Trump's offer came not long after DeSantis snapped at an Associated Press reporter who asked him why he wasn't taking questions from voters during his events.
A federal judge did not make an immediate decision on the fate of a revised version of a federal policy that prevents the deportation of hundreds of thousands of immigrants brought to the U.S. as children. A court hearing was held in Houston on Thursday. Attorneys representing the nine states suing to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program and lawyers for the federal government and DACA recipients made their arguments to U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen. The judge, who in 2021 declared DACA illegal, didn't say when he would issue a ruling but said he would do so "as expeditiously as we can."
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Louisiana and nine other states have filed a lawsuit against the federal government over sharp increases in national flood insurance rates slated to be phased in over the coming years. Dozens of local Louisiana governments and flood control districts also are plaintiffs in the lawsuit, which was filed in U.S. district court in New Orleans on Thursday. The Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Emergency Management Agency are among the defendants. The suit was announced at a news conference by Attorney General Jeff Landry, who was accompanied by local government officials and business leaders.
Authorities say a store owner in South Carolina charged with murder this week after shooting a 14-year-old boy he wrongly thought stole water has shot at suspected shoplifters two other times in the past eight years and not faced charges. Richland County deputies say 58-year-old Rick Chow got in a fight with a shoplifter in 2018 and shot the man in the leg. They say in 2015, a suspected shoplifter got in a car after Chow tried to stop him, and Chow fired several shots at the vehicle after the suspect threatened to shoot him. Chow's lawyer has not commented on Monday's murder charge or the other shootings.
Ron DeSantis has made a four-stop blitz through Iowa during his first full day of presidential campaigning. He's aiming for a personal connection with voters even as he intensifies his criticism of former President Donald Trump. The Florida governor’s first appearance was the floor of Port Neal Welding in Salix, a rural town near Sioux City. DeSantis made subsequent Wednesday events in Council Bluffs, Pella and Cedar Rapids. He's packing in early stops in the state where caucuses kick off the Republican presidential primary voting. From there, he will head later in the week to New Hampshire and then South Carolina.
The governors of Virginia, West Virginia and South Carolina are joining the growing list of Republican-led states sending soldiers or other state law enforcement officers to the U.S. border with Mexico. Virginia's Glenn Youngkin announced Wednesday he's deploying 100 Virginia National Guard soldiers and 21 support personnel at the request of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. South Carolina's Henry McMaster and West Virginia's Jim Justice made similar announcement Wednesday. At least eight Republican-led states have made similar deployments in the weeks since Abbott appealed for helpassistance, which was issued in mid-May. The Department of Homeland Security did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Nikki Haley’s husband will soon begin a yearlong deployment with the South Carolina Army National Guard to Africa. The mission will encompass most of the remainder of his wife’s campaign for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination. The National Guard told The Associated Press Wednesday that a formal deployment ceremony will likely happen in several weeks. It'll be Michael Haley’s second active-duty deployment since he joined the Guard as an officer in 2006. His first was in January 2013, when Nikki Haley was South Carolina's governor. She's been highly critical of President Joe Biden’s competency as commander in chief as she campaigns for the White House nomination.
Alex Murdaugh has been arraigned on federal money laundering and wire fraud charges for indictments saying he stole money from his clients. The convicted murderer already serving a life sentence in a South Carolina state prison for killing his wife and son pleaded not guilty for now. But one of his lawyers said that might change soon. The details of the 22 federal charges aren’t new. State prosecutors have indicted Murdaugh on similar charges, saying he diverted money meant for clients and a wrongful death settlement for his family’s longtime housekeeper who fell at Murdaugh’s home to his own bank accounts.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis stepped up to Donald Trump at his campaign kickoff event in Iowa, vowing to “fight back” against the former president as the GOP's 2024 campaign enters a new phase. Until now, the 44-year-old Republican governor whose slogan is “Never Back Down” had largely avoided any direct confrontation with Trump, who has in turn unleashed a torrent of fierce attacks against DeSantis for much of the year. But on Tuesday, DeSantis accused Trump of essentially abandoning “America First” principles on immigration, supporting pandemic-related lockdowns and generally having “moved left” on key issues. DeSantis pointed out: "His whole family moved to Florida under my governorship. Are you kidding me?”
A South Carolina gas station owner accused of chasing a 14-year-old boy from his store and fatally shooting him in the back has made his first court appearance on a murder charge. Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott says station owner Rick Chow incorrectly suspected the middle school student, Cyrus Carmack-Belton, had shoplifted water from the station. After a verbal confrontation Sunday, Carmack-Belton fled and was pursued by Chow’s son. Rick Chow joined the chase, armed with a pistol. Lott says Chow fired, striking Carmack-Belton in the back. The station owner and his lawyer declined to comment on the case at Chow's initial court appearance Tuesday.
A South Carolina sheriff's office says one person was killed and five others injured in a shooting on Memorial Day. The Charleston County Sheriff’s Office says deputies responded to a report of a shooting Monday night in Hollywood and found six gunshot victims. Officials say one person died on the scene and the other five were taken to area hospitals with injuries that weren't considered life-threatening. The sheriff's office says deputies who responded to a report of a crowd in the area about two hours earlier found a neighborhood party, but no unlawful activity. Detectives were working to determine the circumstances that led to the shooting, but officials say no arrests have been made.
Russia’s Interior Ministry has issued an arrest warrant for U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham following his comments related to the fighting in Ukraine. Graham met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Friday. Zelenskyy's office later released an edited video of the encounter in which Graham notes that “the Russians are dying" and describes the U.S. military assistance to the country as “the best money we’ve ever spent.” Graham appeared to have made the remarks in different parts of the conversation. But the short video by Ukraine’s presidential office put them next to each other. It caused outrage in Russia. The Russian Interior Ministry issued the arrest warrant on Monday.
Carnival Cruise Lines says that one of its ships that navigated rough seas off the South Carolina coast has resumed sailing on its next cruise. Terrified passengers on the Carnival Sunshine took to social media over the Memorial Day holiday weekend to post video of water pouring through a flooded hallway on a cabin level and pictures of on-board stores in shambles as large waves swelled on the sea. Miami-based Carnival says the ship's return to Charleston, South Carolina, from the Bahamas on Saturday was delayed by prolonged bad weather and rough seas in the area. No serious injuries were reported.
When Republican Sen. Tim Scott of South Carolina launched his campaign for the White House, the notoriously prickly former President Donald Trump welcomed his new competitor with open arms. There were no accusations of disloyalty or nasty nicknames like when Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, his leading rival, joined the race two days later. The contrast underscores not only the fact that Trump sees DeSantis as his most formidable rival, but also basic math: He and his team have long believed the more candidates who enter the Republican primary contest, the better for Trump. And the field is growing by the day.
Civil rights leaders in South Carolina say they plan to petition the U.S. Supreme Court to rename the landmark Brown v. Board of Education, which outlawed segregation of public schools across the country. The Post and Courier reports that a group representing past plaintiffs and their descendants plans to file paperwork asking the high court to reorder the set of five 1954 cases that led to the Brown ruling. Members want to replace Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, with a South Carolina case that was filed earlier. Briggs v. Elliott was named after Harry Briggs, one of 20 parents who brought a lawsuit against Clarendon County School Board President R.W. Elliott.
A 25-year-old firefighter from South Carolina has died after part of a burning apartment building collapsed while firefighters were inside. Authorities said James Muller of the Irmo Fire District died Friday while he was providing aid during the response to a fire at an apartment building in Columbia. WLTX-TV reports that Muller was one of seven firefighters who were taken to the hospital after the collapse. Columbia-Richland Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins said the fire happened at Tropical Ridge apartments. Jenkins said five firefighters from Columbia and two from Irmo had to be taken to the hospital. A total of 19 people were displaced due to damaged apartments.
Fishermen in the U.S.’s only commercial-scale fishing industry for valuable baby eels once again had a productive season searching for the tiny fish. Baby eels, called elvers, are often worth more than $2,000 per pound because of how valuable they are to Asian aquaculture companies. They’re raised to maturity so they can be used in Japanese food, some of which is sold in the U.S. in unagi dishes at sushi restaurants. The elvers have again been worth more than $2,000 pounds at the docks this year, according to the Maine Department of Marine Resources. The price was a tick below last year’s, but higher than the previous two.
A judge has put a temporary halt to South Carolina’s new law banning most abortions around six weeks of pregnancy until the state Supreme Court can review the measure. The ruling Friday by Judge Clifton Newman came just about 24 hours after Gov. Henry McMaster signed the bill. The decision means South Carolina reverts back to a ban around 20 weeks. The new law is similar to a ban on abortion once cardiac activity can be detected that lawmakers passed in 2021. Legislative leaders say the new law makes technical tweaks that should sway at least one justice to change his mind. Planned Parenthood says the differences shouldn't change the original ruling.
Authorities say a school bus crash in South Carolina has sent at least 18 people including several students to the hospital. The South Carolina Highway Patrol says the bus and a tanker truck collided Thursday afternoon near Gilbert, southwest of the capital of Columbia. The Highway Patrol says 36 passengers were aboard and a hospital says at least 17 children and an adult were transported there for treatment. The students were from Gilbert Middle School and Gilbert High School. A hospital spokesperson says all of the patients were evaluated and released. There is no immediate information on what caused the crash.
Judge halts South Carolina’s new law banning abortions around 6 weeks of pregnancy so state Supreme Court can review
Judge halts South Carolina’s new law banning abortions around 6 weeks of pregnancy so state Supreme Court can review.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is working to push past an embarrassing beginning to his presidential campaign. The Republican outlined an aggressive travel schedule on Thursday and announced he had raised $8.2 million in the 24 hours since entering the race. His team insists they remain well funded and well positioned for a long fight ahead. Still, DeSantis faced nagging questions about his rocky rollout during a conservative media tour. The 44-year-old governor formally launched his campaign Wednesday during an online conversation with Twitter CEO Elon Musk, but the audio stream crashed repeatedly. DeSantis’ allies privately acknowledge that the situation was an unwelcome distraction. But there is a broad sense that the announcement snafu will have limited long-term political consequences.
A longtime friend of convicted murderer Alex Murdaugh has admitted he helped his old college roommate steal more than $4 million meant for a wrongful death settlement after Murdaugh’s housekeeper died in a fall. Cory Fleming pleaded guilty Thursday to conspiracy to commit wire fraud in federal court. The 54-year-old lawyer faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine when he is sentenced at a later date. After Murdaugh’s maid, Gloria Satterfield, died following a fall at the family’s home, Murdaugh convinced Satterfield’s sons to hire Fleming as their lawyer, saying they could help get the family money for a wrongful death settlement. Fleming and Murdaugh then kept all the money for themselves.