Tom Davis, individually, and as a Citizen, Resident, Taxpayer, Qualified Elector and State Senator of South Carolina, Petitioner,
Hugh K. Leatherman, Sr., in his capacity as President Pro Tempore of the South Carolina Senate; James H. Lucas, in his capacity as Speaker of the South Carolina House of Representatives and as a member of the Legislative Council; Henry D. McMaster, in his capacity as Lieutenant Governor and President of the South Carolina Senate and as a member of the Legislative Council; Nikki R. Haley, in her capacity as Governor of South Carolina; Alan M. Wilson, in his capacity as Attorney General of the State of South Carolina; Luke A. Rankin, in his capacity as a member of the Legislative Council; F. Gregory Delleney, Jr., in his capacity as a member of the Legislative Council; Mark Hammond, in his capacity as a member of the Legislative Council; and the State of South Carolina, Respondents. Appellate Case No. 2016-002473
Submitted January 17, 2017
Petitioner Tom Davis, of Beaufort, pro se, Petitioner.
William W. Wilkins, Andrew A. Mathias, and Konstantine P.
Diamaduros, all of Greenville and Richard L. Tapp, Jr., of
Charleston, all for Respondents Hugh K. Leatherman, Sr., and
Luke A. Rankin.
Patrick G. Dennis, Charles F. Reid, Emma T. Dean, Richard L.
Pearce, James H. Goldin, and Roland M. Franklin, Jr., all of
Columbia, for Respondents James H. Lucas and Francis G.
D. McMaster, of Columbia, pro se, Respondent.
S. Bowers, Jr., and Richele K. Taylor, both of Columbia, for
Respondent Nikki R. Haley.
Attorney General Alan M. Wilson, Solicitor General Robert D.
Cook, and Deputy Solicitor General J. Emory Smith, Jr., all
of Columbia, for Respondents Alan M. Wilson and the State of
H. Matthews and Melissa B. Manning, both of Columbia, for
Respondent Mark Hammond.
A. Martin, of Pickens, pro se, as Amicus Curiae.
granted the petition for original jurisdiction in this
declaratory judgment matter to consider the questions posed
by petitioner of whether "the provisions of Article III
and Article IV of the South Carolina Constitution have been
amended by virtue of" Act 289 of 2012 and Act 214 of
2014, as well as the vote of the general electorate in the
2012 general election, and if the articles have been amended,
"what is the text of those amendments." Petitioner
also requests that this Court, upon answering those
questions, direct the Legislative Council to take action as
necessary to ensure the text of the South Carolina
Constitution, as published and made publicly available,
conforms with this Court's decision.
core of these questions is whether the amendments become
effective "following the general election of 2018,
" as specifically stated in Act 289 and similarly stated
in the ballot text presented to and approved by the general
electorate in 2012,  or May 29, 2014, the date of ratification
of Act 214, as published by the Legislative Council.
the parties who filed memoranda of law in this matter agree
that the amendments at issue become effective beginning with
or upon the general election of 2018. We likewise agree that
this is evident from the language of the Acts and the ballot
text. We therefore declare that Articles III and IV of the
South Carolina Constitution have been amended by, and as set
forth in, Acts 289 and 214, and that the text of those Acts,
along with the text of the ballot presented to and approved
by the voters in the 2012 general election, states the
amendments shall ...