Leading for Local Values.

Honest.  Courageous.  Representative.

Standing for our Values: Twelve Issues

1. Life 

I will never cast a vote to support abortion.  I am working hard to end all abortion funding in the state budget.  Further, I am a sponsor and champion of the Personhood Act to define preborn children as human beings at conception under the law.


2. Family

The family is being attacked today, often with incursions on the Constitution through judicial activism.  I stand unashamedly for natural marriage between one man and one woman.  I am a cosponsor of legislation to protect businesses with restrooms for biological men and women.  I support religious freedom.  I am always on the lookout for attacks on our traditional values - for example, I am working against ongoing Obama-era Federal attempts to influence the upbringing of children.


3. Gun Rights 

I seek to make it easier rather than harder for law-abiding citizens to defend themselves and their neighbors.  I'm a main sponsor of Constitutional Carry, that is, open carry without a need for state permission.  South Carolina is one of only five states (the others are California, Florida, Illinois, and New York) still without any form of open handgun carry - a carryover from discriminatory Jim Crow laws.  We need to come up to the bar with the rest of the country and empower We the People to keep one another safe.

4. Spending

I seek to cut wasteful spending in state government, fully fund the Local Government Fund, and oppose new taxes.  I work to prioritize core government functions like roads, education, courts, and law enforcement rather than pet projects.  I will vote against any proposed budget that does not curb South Carolina's dependence on the Federal dole, which currently provides over 30% of annual state money.

5. Roads 

We need our roads fixed.  The problem is the power structure in Columbia.  Currently, just a handful of legislators control the money.  I voted against the recent gas tax increase because I am not confident that the money will go where it was promised.  I will continue to work for accountability and real reform.  I support making SCDOT a Cabinet agency and ending the State Infrastructure Bank.  Please find several of my reform proposals listed below!


6. Education 

I vigorously defend teachers and students in every education context, including homeschooling.  I will oppose every attempt to allow Federal mandates on education.  I am against school district consolidation because I believe community-level control is the best way to preserve our values.  I will always seek to empower parents to make the decisions that are right for their children.


7. Heritage 

I honor our heritage and I defend our state’s historical monuments because I believe those who forget the past cannot rightly chart the future.  We need to remember those who died to defend our state and learn the lessons with which they provided us.


8. Judicial Reform

Our state is one of only two in the country that allows lawyers in the legislature to elect judges.  I believe this system creates a conflict of interests and is the root of South Carolina's ethics turmoil.  I am working with other conservatives in the House and Senate to give the entire state a voice on the Judicial Merit Selection Commission (JMSC), the body that determines who is eligible to be a judge, which currently consists of just a handful of politically-connected individuals.  In the long term, I support changing the antiquated system as a whole, with appointment of judges by the Governor with the advice and consent of the General Assembly.


9. Healthcare 

I believe greater liberty provides greater quality and availability of care.  I support empowering community solutions rather than government programs by expanding scope of practice, restricting “Certificates of Need” that hurt doctors, increasing state protection of volunteer caretakers from liability, and preventing Obamacare from controlling the market.  I am concerned by the opioid epidemic and am working alongside my colleagues in the House to build solutions to remedy this devastating situation.  My perspective is that we should treat addicts like patients rather than like criminals.  I believe one promising element of the solution for opioids would be legislation to provide patients with access to medical cannabis only if it is prescribed by a qualified doctor.  I do not support recreational use of cannabis and I believe the psychoactive components should remain a controlled substance just as for other similar drugs.

10. Accountability

We need to "drain the swamp."  From what I've observed, major decisions in Columbia are usually made by evaluating which special interests support a proposal and which oppose it.  Rarely is the will of the people brought into account, and even more rare is the consideration of what is actually right and wrong.  Part of the problem is that we have a "legislative state" where a handful of politicians are drunk with power.  A prime example of this failure is the recent V.C. Summer nuclear plant debacle.  I support moving power toward the executive branch to restore balance and create clear lines of responsibility.  I am also working to enact term limits for committee chairmen.  Most importantly, I pledge to keep in touch so that you, the people of District 38, are always able to hold me accountable to stand for your values.

11. Law Enforcement

We need to stand with our men and women in blue as they fight crime.  I'm behind our deputies and police and remain committed to helping them keep South Carolina safe.  This year, I sponsored a bill to expand our state's Inmate Work Program supported by Sheriff Chuck Wright.  I helped pass a bill to increase litter enforcement on our roads.  I also worked hard to provide $5 million in the budget for school resource officers - unfortunately, this proposal was ultimately voted down by the House in favor of tourism advertising.

12. Business

I seek to protect our local community businesses.  I support our farms and recognize that government intervention and over-regulation is one of the biggest hurdles the agriculture industry is facing.  I consistently vote against proposals that give the state more power over our business.  I do not support crony deals that give one industry or company an advantage over another.  Instead, I support lowering the overall tax rates, closing special loopholes, and providing opportunity for all.  My goal is to allow the people of South Carolina to succeed and I don't think we need the help of big government for that.

If you'd like to help Josiah Magnuson continue to give voice to these issues in Columbia, please donate to the campaign today.

Five Common Sense Reforms to Fix Our Roads

A long-term roads solution will require reform.  One major reason our transportation is ineffective is we are putting too much money toward pet projects like roundabouts, bike lanes, sidewalks, and new roads.  Others reasons, according to the 2016 audit, include a lack of a clear prioritization system, a lack of leadership and accountability, a lack of consistent outside review, and more.  We may need more revenue later on - but we can't give the state a raise until we can verify it's doing its job.

Several crucial reforms include:

1. End the State Transportation Infrastructure Bank.  The only thing STIB does is put our state in debt.  It’s a tool of establishment cronies to fund their pet projects.  Let’s get rid of it.

2. Make SCDOT Accountable to the Governor.  Currently, a small handful of legislators, called the Joint Transportation Review Committee (JTRC), controls who is appointed to the SCDOT Transportation Commission.  Eliminating this political power structure and placing SCDOT directly under the Governor - so that commissioners can be hired and fired like in a business - streamlines the process and provides needed statewide accountability.

3. Fund the Local Government Fund and Transfer Some State Roads to Counties.  As of 2015, South Carolina had the third longest road system in the country.  Our state should begin placing some roads under local control.  However, the legislature cannot do so until they fulfill their legal commitment to the counties to fully fund the Local Government Fund.

4. Begin Weaning South Carolina Off Federal Cash.  Right now, Federal money pays for over a third of our state budget.  Federal money always comes with strings attached, whether now or later.  In regards to roads, Federal funding mandates a percentage of our matching transportation spending go toward the construction of new roads instead of regular repair and maintenance.  As long as the legislature is taking this cash, they will be building roads we don’t need.

5. Decentralize the Columbia Bureaucracy.  Our seven district transportation engineers know how to do their job.  But right now their projects are subjected to an inane amount of regulation and approval from politicians in Columbia (and in the Federal government).  We need to ensure that district engineers have the ability to be effective.  Decentralizing power is a great thing.

Josiah pledged to NOT VOTE for new revenue until common sense reforms were implemented,

and he kept that promise by voting against the 2016 gas tax hike.