Republican S.C. Gubernatorial Candidate Was Not Fired, Paper Pushes Story Anyway
Republican candidate for governor of South Carolina Catherine Templeton was not fired from running the government's health agency, despite media reports.
Haley, however, now U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said the story was false.
"Catherine was not fired by Gov. Haley and offered her resignation voluntarily," Haley's U.N. office told the paper.
Readers of the Post and Courier story do not reach Haley's rejection of the claim until the eleventh paragraph of the article. The paper also downplayed Haley's comment as backing the "official version" of Templeton's departure from the health board.
In addition to Haley's on-the-record statement, Allen Amsler, who was the chairman of the department of health at the time, also confirmed Templeton was not fired.
"She was true to her word and we were sorry to lose her," Amsler said, noting Templeton had always planned to step down from the health board when Haley's first term as governor ended.
The Post and Courier itself this at the time. The paper reported Templeton left on good terms with the department and received a standing ovation from the board when she stepped down in 2015.
"'We greatly appreciate your three years with us, Catherine,' DHEC Board Chairman Allen Amsler told her before the group officially accepted her resignation at a meeting in Columbia," the paper reported in January 2015.
"The agency is much better off today than it was three years ago," Amsler said at the time.
The Post and Courier also reported then that Templeton, who was first appointed to the state's labor department before heading the health department, would commit to serving for four years.
"On Thursday, she said she had fulfilled that promise," the Post and Courier reported at the time.
Templeton received praise for her work from Haley, who said Templeton had "shown great leadership," and Sen. Tim Scott (R., S.C.) when she stepped down.
Scott said losing Templeton's service was a "loss for every part of this state."
Despite previous reporting and Haley and Amsler's confirmations that Templeton was not fired, the Post and Courier pushed the story that she was "forced out."
The paper relied on anonymous sources who said they had "direct knowledge" that Templeton was fired for her "attention-grabbing antics."
Templeton's campaign blasted the story as a smear from bureaucrats.
"This is a political hit job originating from the same entrenched bureaucrats and desperate career politicians that Catherine Templeton took on with Gov. Nikki Haley," said R.J. May, Templeton's campaign manager. "[T]hey're using unnamed sources who are hiding in the shadows to do their dirty work."