Bogus Charges of Stealing Political Signs Already Begun

By Paul Gable

Even the coronavirus scare can’t stop primary campaign silly season from engulfing Horry County with what seems to be biennial but bogus accusations of political signs being stolen.

A Facebook post yesterday by the wife of one candidate in Horry County was complaining about somebody “stealing” her husband’s campaign signs.

The post was complete with verbiage about how much planning went into the placement of the signs and how the campaign was diligently following the law and not placing signs in the right of way. It even went so far as to quote the Commandment “Thou shalt not steal”.

Every campaign cycle we hear about signs being stolen with the onus attempting to at least infer that someone from the opponent’s camp is responsible. Through my experience, at least 99% of the complaints of sign stealing are wrong.

Political signs are not allowed in rights of way or on other public property. Many candidates really do not know what constitutes a right of way and where all public property is located.

The various government agencies in the county have code enforcement departments that will remove signs from restricted areas and dispose of them as needed.

The picture accompanying this article was taken at a county dumpster Wednesday evening. It is clear that political signs from several candidates, the candidate whose wife was complaining of stolen signs included, as well as various other signs of the type routinely placed along roads. The signs were picked up by county workers because their placement was in violation of county code.

The husband is a political novice so we have to give a small bit of leeway for ignorance. However, I would suggest, before you go publically accusing people of stealing your signs, you go down to the county dumpster and retrieve them, then pick up a copy of the county code for sign placement so you will, in fact, be in compliance with the county ordinance.

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