Lawmakers file competing proposals to change name of Greenville highway after Trump or Obama

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Greenville, SC (WSPA) – Two resolutions in the South Carolina State House are stirring up a lot of conversation.

One resolution wants to name the Gateway project after President Donald Trump. Another wants to name it after President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle.

The two bills were introduced at the end of January. Some say they support changing the name of the Gateway project while others say changing the name could stir up controversy.

“I think either side you’re on it’s a little bit divisive,” Greenville resident Aaron Dyer said.

For many of the people we spoke with, changing the name of the Gateway project to ‘President Donald J. Trump interchange has the potential to do more harm than good.

“Big names and big things like that, such as the NCAA tournament, if something like that happens they may look into that and they may not hold it here. They may relocate somewhere else,” Antrez Byrd said.

It’s an issue for which the Republican authors of the resolution are willing to stand up.

“This is the biggest interchange in the state of South Carolina and so it’s huge and so that would fit President Donald J. Trump.” South Carolina Republican Representative, and bill co-sponsor, Stewart Jones said.

Days after the proposal was made, a second resolution was drafted proposing the Gateway project be named ‘President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama Interchange’ was introduced by two democratic representatives.

“I don’t think they should name that highway off of any president….we have a lot of good people here that are doing a lot of amazing things and I would believe that their name should be on there. To leave a legacy,” Greenville resident Veronica Madden said.

Most people we spoke with say name changes shouldn’t be the focus for our elected officials, at least for now.

“I think they need to focus on fixing the roads first before they should name them,” Tessa Kelly said.

Not one elected official sponsoring these resolutions actually serves the Greenville area.

We spoke with Republican Representative, Patrick Haddon, who serves the Greenville area. He says naming the road should be reserved for special instances.

The resolutions are currently in the House committees. The next step would be to go to the full House of Representatives.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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