South Carolina Lt. Gov. Ken Ard announced his resignation today, in the wake of a criminal investigation into how he spent campaign funds and after an ethics committee fined him $72,000 for how he spent those funds.
According to reports, Ard improperly used campaign money to buy a Sony (NYSE:SNE) PlayStation 3, two of Apple‘s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPads, a flat-screen TV, and to pay for wife’s cell phone bill, among other things. He allegedly spent $3,000 at Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) on the Playstation, iPads, and TV, and over $12,000 overall in improper purchases.
Ard’s resignation comes on the heels of several other recent ethics violations by South Carolina officials. Among the most notable was former Gov. Mark Sanford, who also admitted to violating campaign spending laws and was censured by state legislators after trying to cover up an affair with an Argentinian woman by claiming he was hiking the Appalachian Trail. Current South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley replaced Sanford in Jan. 2011.
— Benjamin Nanamaker, InvestorPlace Money & Politics Editor
The opinions contained in this column are solely those of the writer.
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