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GOP attorney general hopeful Wilson vows to be ‘proactive’

MOUNT PLEASANT — Republican state attorney general candidate Alan Wilson swung through the Lowcountry on Tuesday to underscore his willingness to fight the pending federal health care mandates.

Wilson and Democratic attorney general candidate Matthew Richardson have expressed concerns about the recent health care reform, but Wilson said he would ensure that South Carolina takes an active role in fighting it.

That would include using state taxpayer money to help pay for the legal challenge currently being pursued by at least 18 other states.

“We’re not going to waste their money, but bear in mind this is a health care bill that will cost us $1 billion over the next 10 years, starting this coming year, $20 million at a minimum,” Wilson said. “We’ve got to get out there and be proactive.”

The legal fight focuses in part on the mandate that citizens must buy health insurance or pay about $700 in additional taxes. A federal judge recently ruled the states’ complaint could go forward.

“If they can require us to buy health insurance, they can require you to buy a particular kind of car,” Wilson said.

Richardson issued a statement saying he also opposes the health care plan and has more experience in federal court, where the lawsuit will play out. “Unlike my opponent, I will not waste the money of the people of this state on political lawsuits and posturing,” he said.

Richardson also vowed not to seek another office, if elected, and to forgo his state pay until the economy turns around.

Former S.C. Attorney General Charlie Condon joined Wilson Tuesday and praised his experience as a prosecutor in the S.C. Attorney General’s office and in Lexington County’s Solicitor’s Office.

By Robert Behre, “The Post and Courier”