South Carolina

In South Carolina, some state senators are making passionate calls to move the Confederate flag off the Capitol grounds. Senator Vincent Sheheen introduced a bill to do that. On the Senate floor today, he said the debate over the flag shows that racial tensions are still a problem in South Carolina.

"We still have a very serious culture of division within our state. And it's a culture of division that we as leaders have to take stands to change."

Tom Bullock/WFAE News

South Carolina lawmakers reconvene in Columbia this morning, where they will debate the fate of a Confederate flag flying on the grounds of the capital. Lawmakers have introduced three bills to move the flag to a nearby museum. But for many, this debate is about more than just location.

The call to remove the Confederate flag from South Carolina’s Capitol grounds has gained a powerful supporter.  Governor Nikki Haley said it’s time to take down a symbol that divides the state. 

Haley said the shooting of nine African-Americans at a church in Charleston last week made people look at the Confederate flag differently. Flanked by politicians from both parties, she called on state lawmakers to remove it. 

Michael Tomsic

A South Carolina landmark that's both loved and lampooned is under renovation. You can't miss it driving on I-85 near the North Carolina border: it's a massive peach-shaped water tower.

City of Chester, SC

Chester, South Carolina has a population around 5,500. It is in many ways a classic small Southern city. Chartered in 1840, the town has plenty of history, from farming and textiles to railroads and the Civil War.

Chester also has a 21st century gang problem. On November 4th, Chester City Councilman Odell Williams was killed in a drive-by shooting. Authorities say all five suspects now charged in the killing have ties to a gang called “Roundtree Circle.”And, this is just the latest gang violence to hit the town of Chester – a teenager was killed earlier this year.

The U.S. Supreme Court is allowing same-sex marriage to begin in South Carolina. The nation's highest court refused Thursday to delay the marriages pending appeal.

Courtesy of

South Carolina’s Attorney General says he will appeal A federal judge’s ruling that struck down South Carolina’s ban on gay marriage.

Suspended South Carolina House Speaker Bobby Harrell has pleaded guilty to six campaign finance violations and agreed to resign from office. 

Harrell accepted a plea deal Thursday that lets him avoid jail time. Instead, he will have six years in prison suspended as long as he completes three years of probation. He was also fined $30,000, ordered to turn over about $10,000 remaining from his campaign account to the state and will pay $93,000 to South Carolina's general fund.

A grand jury indicted the South Carolina Speaker of the House Wednesday on nine charges that include corruption and ethics violations. The indictment is the latest in a months-long legal battle that's involved the South Carolina attorney general and the state Supreme Court.

Flickr/Seth Sawyers /

Both North and South Carolina are getting ready to rewrite Common Core standards.  South Carolina has already started the process. Teams of educators have until March to come up with new ones.