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The South Carolina Senate Chamber
Russ McKinney/SC Public Radio

The next session of the S.C. General Assembly doesn’t convene until January, but Republicans in the State Senate are already working to try and pass a bill that essentially would prohibit abortions in the state.  It’s known as the Fetal Heartbeat Bill.

It won easy passage in the House of Representatives earlier this  year, and Republican Governor Henry McMaster has said if the bill passes he’ll sign it into law.  Because the bill is expected to have a harder time passing in the Senate its' backers are already at work trying to give it a head start in next year’s session.

In 2014, Congressman James E. Clyburn posted this picture to his Twitter page, sharing that he met his wife in a SC jail and that she reminds him to fight for women's rights and equal pay.
Twitter: @ClyburnWhip

Dr. Emily England Clyburn, wife of Congressman James Clyburn, Thursday morning. Dr. Clyburn was 80 year old.

Known as a driving force behind her husband’s political rise, the Berkeley County native was also a community activist in her own rite. Dr. Clyburn was a former librarian, often establishing programs at the schools she was employed. She also raised money for students to attend college. When Congressman Clyburn hosted his annual charity golf weekend in Santee, Dr. Clyburn also hosted her annual luncheon.

On this mini episode of the South Carolina Lede, host Gavin Jackson takes us to Horry County as a number of 2020 Democratic presidential hopefuls visited the Galivants Ferry Stump Meeting this week. The Associated Press' Meg Kinnard and The Post and Courier's Jamie Lovegrove join Gavin at the long-running Pee Dee event to discuss speeches given by New York City Mayor Bill de Balsio, former Vice President Joe Biden, South Bend, Ind. Mayor Pete Buttigieg, and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.).

McCellanville South Carolina after Hurricane Hugo struck
Mike Burton [CC BY-ND 2.0] via Flickr

It's been 30 years since Hurricane Hugo made landfall in South Carolina, pounding the coast on Sept. 22, 1989 before coming inland and causing damage all the way to the North Carolina line and beyond.  The storm remains fresh in the minds of many adults who were in the state at the time.  In that sense, 30 years doesn't seem that long, but in terms of emergency response, it's a big gap.

Charleston's Emergency Management Director Shannon Scaff preparing for a  live interview with The Weather Channel
Victoria Hansen/SC Public Radio

There's a brief lull in the heavy rain that's hit Charleston as Hurricane Dorian lingers off the coast.  The city's Emergency Managment Director Shannon Scaff takes a deep breath. 

He's about to interview live, nationally with The Weather Channel.  He's also relieved.  The storm isn't over yet and already he knows it could have been much worse.

"We got lucky with the tides," he tells the reporter. "The storm surge wasn’t as bad as what was forecasted originally."

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

The City of Chester is in crisis. Shootings are on the rise and so are shooting-related deaths. So far this year, police have taken more than 130 calls about shots being fired. That’s 20 more than all of last year.

Since April there have been almost a dozen confirmed shootings, including the recent deaths of 36-year-old Andrew Johnson and the drive-by killing of 14-year-old Jada Jones. Thirty homes, vehicles, and people have been hit by gunfire in Chester so far in 2019. That number was 25 for all of 2018.

Those numbers might not sound like much, but in a city of less than 5,500 people, statistics like these get attention.

2019 Galivants Ferry Presidential Stump
Thelisha Eaddy/ SC Public Radio

Democratic presidential candidates have consistently campaigned in South Carolina since the beginning of the year. They’ve visited the midlands, Upstate and the Lowcountry. Monday, four of these candidates returned to South Carolina, this time in the Pee Dee.

Gavin Jackson with Jamie Lovegrove (l) and Jeffrey Collins (r).
A.T. Shire/SC Public Radio

On this edition of the South Carolina Lede, host Gavin Jackson is joined by The Post and Courier's Jamie Lovegrove and the Associated Press' Jeffrey Collins to look at the fetal heartbeat bill South Carolina state senators recently received testimony on, despite being out of session. They discuss this initial hearing for the House-approved bill that would ban virtually all abortions in the Palmetto State.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

Why don’t people leave when a hurricane hits where they live? And how do news outlets and emergency officials and even governors make people understand that they should?

Those are two questions that vex all of the above-mentioned groups during a storm. In the first week of September, Hurricane Dorian menaced the South Carolina coast for days and triggered evacuation orders for every beach community in the state.

And yet, more people than not in some evacuation zones just didn’t evacuate.  

David Ball (second from left) and his band.
Courtesy of the artist

Country music has made and broken careers for close to a century now.  David Ball of Spartanburg is one of the survivors, enjoying a long career in the field.  In high school he joined the legendary acoustic trio Uncle Walt's Band, playing a blend of bluegrass, blues, swing and folk, "and then that of course led me into Jimmie Rodgers, the Carter Family," he recalls of his introduction to country. 

Columbia Native's Country Music Dream Lasts a Lifetime

Sep 12, 2019
Bemo Prince, at the mic, with some of his band members.
Courtesy of the artist

Country music finds fans in a variety of ways, most often by either hearing the music on the radio or seeing country artists play live.  That's the way Bemo Prince of Columbia became a country music fan.  "My daddy took me to hear...Snuffy Jenkins and the Hired Hands, and I was hooked."

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

If you’re the type who likes to say you knew someone back in the day, you might want to remember the name Kamron Venable.

Scott Morgan / South Carolina Public Radio

The Rock Hill Boxing Club is the kind of old school gym real boxers come out of – Golden Glove contenders, burgeoning pros, Olympic hopefuls …. There’s nothing corporate or pretentious about this place. It’s decorated with spray paint and duct tape-wrapped bags; it’s beastly hot; it’s packed with young men looking to make a name in the ring.

But look past the trappings of a small-city boxing gym and you’ll see what the Rock Hill Boxing Club really is for the people who train here – a community. Dare one say a family.

Gavin Jackson (l) and Meg Kinnard in the South Carolina Public Radio studios on Monday, September 9, 2019.
A.T. Shire/SC Public Radio

On this episode of the South Carolina Lede, host Gavin Jackson is joined by the Associated Press' Meg Kinnard to discuss two storms which recently affected the Palmetto State — one political, the other an actual hurricane. They talk about former South Carolina Congressman and Gov. Mark Sanford's announcement that he is running as a Republican challenger against incumbent President Donald Trump in 2020, as well as look at South Carolina's reponse to Hurricane Dorian.

Gavin Jackson (l) speaks with Sen. Bernie Sanders following a campaign stop in Florence, SC on August 29, 2019.
A.T. Shire/SC Public Radio

Leading up to the 2020 election, South Carolina Lede is keeping you up to speed on what the candidates are saying on the campaign trail in the Palmetto State with these "Trail Bites" mini-episodes.

On this edition for the week of September 5, 2019, host Gavin Jackson sits down for an interview with Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). Sanders made several campaign stops around South Carolina this week.

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