Attorney General Weighs In on Suspended Legislators Seats

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) _ South Carolina’s attorney general agrees the state Supreme Court can resolve questions over whether Gov. Henry McMaster should temporarily fill the seats of suspended legislators.

Attorney General Alan Wilson says it’s “in the public interest” for the state’s highest court to directly take up the issue. But Wilson said in court documents filed Friday a lawsuit seeking a temporary replacement for Columbia Sen. John Courson makes irrelevant arguments, and there’s nothing unconstitutional about a legislator being temporarily absent.

Wilson was responding to a lawsuit over Courson’s seat. A separate lawsuit filed Friday makes the same arguments in seeking a temporarily replacement for Charleston Rep. Jim Merrill.

Courson and Merrill are suspended pending the outcome of ethics charges against them.

Courson was indicted two months ago. Merrill was indicted in December.

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