Gov. Nikki Haley took a big step into the national spotlight yesterday with a lunchtime speech at the National Press Club in Washington, which sits just a couple blocks from the White House. The speech was an example of Haley pitching herself as a viable general election candidate, said NYT political reporter Jonathan Martin. She told the Beltway insider crowd “I will sit down and talk” if she’s asked about a possible VP spot. If she finds her way onto a presidential ticket, Haley would need to build broad political appeal, not just conservative support. Source: P&C

Over the course of her wide-ranging 28-minute speech, Haley made the most news for statements about Black Lives Matter and recent protest movements following police-involved shootings like Walter Scott’s death in North Charleston. Haley said: “Most of the people who now live in terror because local police are too intimidated to do their jobs are black.” Instead of “yell and scream,” Haley said, a better approach is to “turn down the volume level.” Later, talking about the 2016 race and the GOP generally, Haley said, ““The problem for our party is that our approach often appears cold and unwelcoming to minorities … That is shameful, and it has to change.” Source: NYT, WaPo

Heading into Labor Day weekend, South Carolina gas prices are sitting at their lowest point in 11 years, averaging just $2.01 per gallon statewide. Source: The State

At this weekend’s Bojangles Southern 500 in Darlington, speedway officials say they’ll let spectators trade in their Confederate flags for American flags. Source: Florence Morning News

South Caorlina Draft Biden, the group in S.C. to rally support around a potential Vice President Joe Biden presidential campaign got a little more structure yesterday, announcing that state Sen. Gerald Malloy and former state Superintendent Inez Tenenbaum would join the group as co-chairs of the state effort. Isaiah Nelson, director of the 2014 Coordinated Campaign for S.C. Democrats and former CofC student body president, will serve as its State Director. Source: P&C

The George Robertson House at 1 Meeting Street downtown sold for $4.2 million this week. Source: P&C

Former Charleston City Councilman Paul Tinkler has withdrawn from the Charleston mayoral race, but isn’t publicly endorsing any of the other candidates yet. Source: P&C

After touring the Navy brig in Hanahan with Pentagon officials yesterday, U.S. Sen. Tim Scott remains opposed to moving military prisoners held in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba the prison just north of Charleston. Scott: “One thing that’s completely clear, without any question, there is no compelling reason to close down Gitmo.” Source: P&C

Durham School Services, the contractor hired to manage Charleston County schools’ bus service, has hired additional drivers and changed routes, but students, parents, and schools are still dealing with ongoing delays and overcrowding, according to the P&C. Source: P&C

The Heritage Foundation, run by former South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint, has reportedly suffered a data breach, exposing the information of private donations made six years ago, according to the group. Source: Politico

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