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Integrity counts, honesty counts, and truthfulness counts. More than ever, I support Ed Clements for re-election as Solicitor for the 12th Judicial Circuit.

I seldom forward scare-tactic emails or repeat rumors and gossip – they are seldom accurate. If possible I check such statements using trustworthy sources but sometimes there is just no way to be sure.

It’s common sense, then, not to repeat those rumors. Sometimes they turn out to be total fabrications.

In the case of the Solicitor’s office there are trustworthy sources to check, such as the Clerk of Court and other official agencies. Wikipedia, a user-submitted “source,” is certainly not one of those.

Multiple misrepresentations (faulty statistics and inaccurate “facts”) are being circulated through Letters to the Editor, Facebook and emails by people who should know better. And they are being copied and forwarded by people who should know better.

Here’s a fact: A single criminal case can have multiple warrants; newspaper accounts of arrests and trials often list these multiple charges in that single case.

Suppose a person commits twenty forgeries and is indicted on a twenty-count indictment. He is allowed to plead guilty to one count but admits responsibility and makes restitution for all twenty, the other 19 counts being dropped. If you went only by numbers of warrants, that would be a five percent conviction rate! Quite misleading.

Here are some facts: The U.S. District Court (Columbia, Greenville, Charleston and Florence offices of the U.S. Attorney) began 2009 with 1081 criminal cases pending, filed 785 cases, and ended with 1052 still pending. They moved only 814 cases in federal court – for the entire state.

During that same time, our Solicitor’s office (Florence and Marion Counties) handled thousands of warrants and moved 2320 indicted cases. That doesn’t include all the PTI and juvenile cases, DUI and CDV cases in Magistrate’s Court, and the other ancillary programs connected with the Solicitor’s office.

Words matter. The truth matters, and honesty and integrity count. Ed Clements consistently demonstrates the high caliber of his character in the operation of his office, and in his campaign for re-election.

He has my wholehearted support, and I ask you to vote for him for re-election as Solicitor for the 12th Judicial Circuit.

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CLick to read entire text: Republicans for Clements letter, July 2010

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