Originally created 08/02/97

Rudy meets Rebekah



We don't know if House District 81 Rep. Rudy Mason, R-Aiken, could have avoided a primary, but he might have if he'd handled a constituent better.

It all began after a principal blew the whistle on a program to perform 317 genital exams on kindergarteners. A permission slip was buried in papers parents were given on registration day and, according to one parent, everyone was told "to hurry and just sign the papers to proceed with registration."

Rebekah Sutherland and other parents contacted Mason, asking him to intervene. She called his Columbia office after learning he had a copy of a state health form relating to the controversy. "I received a fax which stated the form would be sent later" but, in the end, Sutherland charges "Rep. Mason never did fax me the form."

Later, the persistent Sutherland recalls Mason telling her on the phone: "I don't have time to fool with you."

Well, the incumbent is making the time now. Mason is facing Sutherland as a candidate in an Aug. 12 GOP primary and one of her issues is Ä you guessed it Ä parental rights!