By Rep. Bill Sandifer


I am blown away by the interest the national and even international press has taken in the “light bulb bill” that Rep. Dwight Loftis and I have introduced in the South Carolina House. That bill would allow for the manufacture and purchase of incandescent bulbs in our state even after the federal ban on them takes effect in January 2012.

I want to shed some light, so to speak, on why I am motivated to fight for this issue.

While the new compact fluorescent bulbs or “CFLs” do pose some environmental concerns, the truth is that our bill is not really about light bulbs. It’s about taking a stand against government intrusion in our everyday lives.

I strongly believe that the federal government has overstepped the Tenth Amendment and is now venturing into telling us what kind of lighting we can have in our homes.

We must protect the rights of South Carolina consumers who don’t want the federal government telling them which light bulbs they should use. I am championing this bill because I believe that we must stand up for limited government and personal freedoms.

This bill is also about supporting the free market. At a time when South Carolina families need jobs, the federal light bulb ban will export jobs overseas to countries like China, which has gained the lion’s share of the market for CFLs.

I believe that we should let the demand for light bulbs be market-driven rather than mandated by the federal government.