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troung
09 Jun 10,, 14:52
SC Dem upset: Jobless vet to face GOP's Jim DeMint
By SEANNA ADCOX, Associated Press Writer Seanna Adcox, Associated Press Writer Tue Jun 8, 11:12 pm ET

COLUMBIA, S.C. – An unemployed military veteran who raised no funds and put up no campaign website shocked South Carolina's Democratic Party leadership by capturing the nomination Tuesday to face Republican U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint in November.

With nearly all precincts reporting, Alvin Greene, 32, commanded 59 percent of the vote against 41 percent for former four-term state lawmaker Vic Rawl, 64, who had raised about $186,000 and had to abruptly scrap a late-week fundraiser for the fall.

State Democratic Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler said voters unfamiliar with either candidate may have voted alphabetically for Greene over Rawl.

"As far as I know, he never showed up at anything. Vic Rawl has been campaigning everywhere from the time he filed," she said.

Rawl said he was disappointed.

"I would've liked very much to be a candidate against Jim DeMint," Rawl said, describing his sole primary rival as something of a mystery. "I never saw him. I've still never met him."

As for Greene, he couldn't explain it either but thanked voters in a state numb with high unemployment and said: "Let's continue to make history and get South Carolina back to work."

Greene said he spent a total of 13 years in the Air Force and Army before leaving the Army in August.

DeMint, a conservative Republican and tea party darling pursuing a second term, has marshaled a $3.5 million war chest already to face the bare-pockets Democratic underdog.

Political scientist Scott Huffmon at Winthrop University said the looming DeMint-Greene contest already shapes up in lopsided favor of DeMint and shows South Carolina Democrats lack depth to field strong candidates in every race.

"DeMint's coasting pretty much to re-election," he predicted.

Late Tuesday, stunned Democratic leaders in South Carolina struggled to comprehend how the little-seen candidate upstaged Rawl, a moderate Southern Democrat they viewed as their far stronger bet against DeMint. Rawl's lengthy resume lists four past state House terms and former posts as prosecutor, circuit court judge and more.

DeMint trounced a Charleston lawyer, Susan Gaddy, in the GOP contest to advance.

Copyright © 2010 Yahoo! Inc. All rights reserved.

dalem
09 Jun 10,, 17:41
Sadly, I bet it turns out the guy was never in the military.

-dale

troung
09 Jun 10,, 18:01
The mystery of Alvin Greene solved
Posted by Chris Haire on Wed, Jun 9, 2010 at 9:45 AM

The Democratic Party in South Carolina is an knock-knock joke told in pig Latin. A porn movie without the money shot. The funky smell inside of Sarah Palin's knee-high leather boots. Jake Knotts. It's an embarrassment of the first order.

That's the only way to explain the victories last night of Alvin Greene and Ben Fraiser.

Some may call them stealth candidates. This is not adequate.

In the world of politics, they are apparitions who exist on another plane of existence and venture into ours only to cause pain and suffering, mischief and mayhem. And that's precisely what they did last night when Greene won the Democratic nominee in the U.S. Senate race and Fraiser the Dem nom in the U.S. First Congressional District Race.

And somehow they managed to do this by not even campaigning, at least not in the world that you and I are familiar with. In some supernatural realm, perhaps, but not here.

But enough with Greene and Fraiser. I don't care that there is speculation out there that Greene may have been paid to run by some shadowy GOP cabal or that Fraiser may call Maryland home. Those things are inconsequential. Neither caused their much more qualified opponents to lose. A simple mathematical equation did: $186,000=$10,400.

See, Rawl reportedly had $186,000 in his war chest, according noted liberal rag Mother Jones, while Greene may have paid only the $10,400 filing fee to run for the Senate and little else. But that was enough to win.

But $200 grand is a lot of money, you say.

Well, no, it's not.

It is no where near the $3.5 million DeMint has in his war chest or what Barrett, McMaster, Bauer, and even Nikki Haley spent on campaigning.

According to a May 27 post on Wolfe Reports, Barrett had spent $1,127,641.46 between April 1 and the last election filing, McMaster $1,029,613.03, Bauer $943,315.55, and Haley $245,426.51. Each figure, which does not include the cash each candidate still had on hand, was well above what Rawl had in his entire war chest.

Simply put: $186,000 wasn't enough to help Rawl get his name out there.

Believe you me, Rawl lost because voters had no idea who he was. When it comes to name recognition statewide, Rawl, despite being the better qualified candidate, was equal to Greene. And that meant Rawl was a nobody. (The same applies to Burton, who only managed to raise a few thousand bucks in his 1st Congressional District bid.)

So instead, the vote was decided by any number of factors, Greene's placement on the ballot ahead of Rawl, a toss of the coin, a fondness for Alvin and the Chipmunks. Who knows?

But know this: The Democratic Party should not be surprised that some phantom candidate beat out a known-entity within their party if that entity doesn't have enough cash to litter the roadways with campaign signs and blanket the TV with campaign ads.

Qualifications don't mean diddly these days, and most likely they never have. People really don't care about those things. They need a name they can recognize. And in order to get that, you need gobs of money — not a measly $186,000 — or the endorsement of a political celebrity.

So step it up, Dems. Either raise a helluva lot of cash next time or don't raise any at all. After all, $186,000=$10,400.

troung
09 Jun 10,, 18:04
Best political news lately...

WaPo
Jim DeMint gets the kind of opponent candidates dream about

In 2008, the South Carolina Democratic establishment supported attorney Michael Cone for the thankless task of taking on Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.). He raised almost no money and lost, in a massive upset, to an even-lesser known candidate named Bob Conley -- a supporter of Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) who managed to alienate most of his party with hardline conservative stances.

You'd think the local Democratic Party would avoid a disaster like that this year. Vic Rawl, a former state legislator, was not the party's first choice -- he raised about $230,452 and looked set to be the party's sacrificial lamb against Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.). He just went down by a 16-point margin to Alvin Greene. Who is Alvin Greene? A 32-year-old unemployed army veteran who paid the filing fee to run then promptly disappeared. When reached by Corey Hutchins to talk about his campaign, on the suspicion that he was a Republican plant, Greene was incoherent.

Asked if he thought it was a good investment to spend so much of his own money in a two-way Democratic primary to run against a popular Republican with millions in campaign cash, Greene replied: “Rather than just save the $10,000 and just go and buy gasoline with it, just take [it] and just be unemployed for [an] even longer period of time, I mean, that wouldn’t make any sense, um, just, um, but, uh, yes, uh … lowering these gas prices … that will create jobs, too. Anything that will lower the gasoline prices. Offshore drilling, the energy package, all that.”

And so Democrats face Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), one of the political leaders of the tea party movement, with a wholly unserious candidate.

By David Weigel | June 8, 2010; 9:32 PM ET

===================

Shocker In South Carolina

Categories: On The Ballot

07:50 am

June 9, 2010

http://www.npr.org/blogs/politicaljunkie/2010/06/09/127588974/shocker-in-south-carolina-senate-race


by Ken Rudin

Nothing about Nikki Haley or Mark Sanford or any of that salacious stuff.

No, it's about the Democratic primary for the Senate in South Carolina.

Now, we all know that no one is going to defeat Sen. Jim DeMint (R). But everyone thought that his opponent in November was going to be ex-judge and former state Rep. Vic Rawl.

Wrong.

The winner, the improbable winner, was Alvin Greene, an unemployed black Army veteran who spent literally nothing on his campaign ... other than the $10,400 filing fee. He doesn't even have a Web site.

Mother Jones magazine is as baffled about it as the rest of us:

Despite his lack of election funds, Greene claims to have criss-crossed the state during his campaign—though he declined to specify any of the towns or places he visited or say how much money he spent while on the road.

"It wasn’t much, I mean, just, it was—it wasn’t much. Not much, I mean, it wasn’t much," he said, when asked how much of his own money he spent in the primary. Greene frequently spoke in rapid-fire, fragmentary sentences, repeating certain phrases or interrupting himself multiple times during the same sentence while he searched for the right words. But he was emphatic about certain aspects of his candidacy, insisting that details about his campaign organization, for instance, weren't relevant. "I'm not concentrating on how I was elected—it's history. I’m the Democratic nominee—we need to get talking about America back to work, what's going on, in America."

Tags: 2010 Senate race: South Carolina

troung
09 Jun 10,, 18:21
Who Is Alvin Greene?
Who Is Alvin Greene? | Mother Jones (http://motherjones.com/mojo/2010/06/alvin-greene-south-carolina)
— By Suzy Khimm
| Tue Jun. 8, 2010 7:59 PM PDT

— Alvin Greene | SCDP.org.

An unemployed 32-year-old black Army veteran with no campaign funds, no signs, and no website shocked South Carolina on Tuesday night by winning the Democratic Senate primary to oppose Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC). Alvin Greene, who currently lives in his family's home, defeated Vic Rawl, a former judge and state legislator who had a $186,000 campaign warchest and had already planned his next fundraising event. Despite the odds, Greene, who has been unemployed for the past nine months, said that he wasn't surprised by his victory. "I wasn’t surprised, but not really. I mean, just a little, but not much. I knew I was on top of my campaign, and just stayed on top of everything, I just—I wasn't surprised that much, just a little. I knew that I worked hard and did," Greene said in an interview.

Greene insists that he paid the $10,400 filing fee and all other campaign expenses from his own personal funds. "It was 100 percent out of my pocket. I’m self-managed. It’s hard work, and just getting my message to supporters. I funded my campaign 100 percent out of my pocket and self-managed," said Greene, who sounded anxious and unprepared to speak to the public. But despite his lack of election funds, Greene claims to have criss-crossed the state during his campaign—though he declined to specify any of the towns or places he visited or say how much money he spent while on the road.

"It wasn’t much, I mean, just, it was—it wasn’t much. Not much, I mean, it wasn’t much," he said, when asked how much of his own money he spent in the primary. Greene frequently spoke in rapid-fire, fragmentary sentences, repeating certain phrases or interrupting himself multiple times during the same sentence while he searched for the right words. But he was emphatic about certain aspects of his candidacy, insisting that details about his campaign organization, for instance, weren't relevant. "I'm not concentrating on how I was elected—it's history. I’m the Democratic nominee—we need to get talking about America back to work, what's going on, in America."

The oddity of Greene’s candidacy has already prompted speculation from local media about whether he might be a Republican plant. But Greene denies that Republicans or anyone else had approached him about running. "No, no—no one approached me. This is my decision," he said. A 13-year military veteran, he says he had originally gotten the idea in 2008 when he was serving in Korea. "I just saw the country was in bad shape two years ago…the country was declining," he says. "I wanted to make sure we continue to go up on the right track." But when asked whether there was a specific person or circumstance that precipitated his decision to jump into politics, Greene simply replied: "nothing in particular...it's just, uh, nothing in particular." South Carolina Democratic Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler speculated that Greene won because his name appeared first on the ballot, and voters unfamiliar with both candidates chose alphabetically.

Greene has yet to speak to any Democratic officials, either. After filing to run, his campaign went dark. According to this report, he didn’t show up to the South Carolina Democratic Party convention in April and didn't file any of the required paperwork for candidates with the state or Federal Election Commission. When I spoke to him, the state’s Democrats had yet to contact him after his victory was announced.

Greene insists that he's planning to work with state and national officials to ramp up his campaign and raise money "as soon as I can." And he plans on putting his unemployment at the center of his campaign. "I’m currently one of the many unemployed in the state and this country. South Carolina has more unemployed now than at any other time," Greene says. "My campaign slogan: Let's get South Carolina back to work." He adds that he would like to see "one Korea under a democracy."

Sen. DeMint, a Tea Party darling and leader of the GOP's far-right flank, wasn't expecting a competitive challenge this election cycle. But conservative activists are already thrilled to see the Democrats' hand-picked candidate go down in flames. “Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha,” tweeted Tea Party activist and Redstate blogger Erick Erickson after finding out about Greene’s victory.

Greene offered no volleys against DeMint, and he seemed to have more questions than attack lines when it came to the Tea Party. "What's the Tea Party’s position on wars in the Middle East? …I want to know the Tea Party's position on the wars in the Middle East?" he asked. But Greene says that he's excited about the prospect of taking on DeMint in the public arena: "I'm looking forward to the debate this September." DeMint and his supporters are no doubt looking forward to it too.

BenRoethig
09 Jun 10,, 18:26
SC Dem upset: Jobless vet to face GOP's Jim DeMint
By SEANNA ADCOX, Associated Press Writer Seanna Adcox, Associated Press Writer Tue Jun 8, 11:12 pm ET

COLUMBIA, S.C. – An unemployed military veteran who raised no funds and put up no campaign website shocked South Carolina's Democratic Party leadership by capturing the nomination Tuesday to face Republican U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint in November.

With nearly all precincts reporting, Alvin Greene, 32, commanded 59 percent of the vote against 41 percent for former four-term state lawmaker Vic Rawl, 64, who had raised about $186,000 and had to abruptly scrap a late-week fundraiser for the fall.

State Democratic Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler said voters unfamiliar with either candidate may have voted alphabetically for Greene over Rawl.

"As far as I know, he never showed up at anything. Vic Rawl has been campaigning everywhere from the time he filed," she said.

Or it could be the voters are completely sick of you and your specials interests and elected someone who they related with.

troung
09 Jun 10,, 20:36
Surprise SC Senate candidate has charge pending

By MEG KINNARD (AP) – 1 hour ago

COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina's surprise Democratic nominee to challenge U.S. Sen. Jim DeMint is facing a pending felony charge.

Court records show 32-year-old Alvin Greene was arrested in November and charged with showing obscene Internet photos to a University of South Carolina student. The felony charge carries up to five years in prison.

Greene said he had no comment when asked about the charge Wednesday and hung up on a reporter.

The unemployed veteran posted bond after his arrest. He has yet to enter a plea or be indicted.

Records indicate Greene showed photos to a woman and talked about going to her room at a university dorm.

On Tuesday, Greene stunned state Democratic Party leaders by winning the nomination. He raised no money and put up no campaign website. He beat former four-term state lawmaker Vic Rawl, 64, who had raised about $186,000 and had to abruptly scrap a late-week fundraiser for the fall.

Greene said he spent a total of 13 years in the Air Force and Army before leaving the Army in August.

DeMint, a conservative Republican and tea party darling pursuing a second term, has marshaled a $3.5 million war chest already to face the bare-pockets Democratic underdog.

Political analysts don't give Greene a chance. Few expected Rawl would have fared better.

Rawl's lengthy resume lists four past state House terms and former posts as prosecutor, circuit court judge and more.

DeMint trounced a Charleston lawyer, Susan Gaddy, in the GOP contest to advance.

Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
========================
June 9, 2010 3:03 PM
Alvin Greene, Democratic Senate Nominee, Facing Felony Charge for Obscene Photos
Posted by Brian Montopoli Leave Comment
Alvin Greene, Democratic Senate Nominee, Facing Felony Charge for Obscene Photos - Political Hotsheet - CBS News (http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-20007256-503544.html)

Alvin Greene, an unemployed army veteran, won the Democratic Senate primary in South Carolina on Tuesday, June 8, 2010. He will go on to face Sen. Jim DeMint in the November general election.
(Credit: South Carolina Democratic Party)

Here's more evidence that Republican Sen. Jim DeMint is facing what appears to be the easiest reelection campaign in the country: Alvin Greene, the unknown 32-year-old who somehow won the Democratic Senate nomination in South Carolina, is reportedly facing felony charges for allegedly showing obscene online photos to a University of South Carolina student.

The Associated Press reported the pending charges, which carry a possible five-year jail term. Greene was arrested in November and when asked about the charge refused to comment and hung up on the AP reporter.

The exact nature of what took place is unclear: According to the AP, "Records indicate Greene showed photos to a woman and talked about going to her room at a university dorm." He posted bond after being arrested and has not yet been indicted.

As Mother Jones reported last night, Greene did not seem to campaign in the primary and did not even have a website; some are speculating that he was able to defeat expected candidate Vic Rawl simply because voters selected the first name on the alphabetical ballot.

Conspiracy theories surround Greene, many centering on where exactly he got the $10,400 filing fee to join the race. (Some have even suggested he is a GOP plant, which Greene denies.) According to the Columbia Free Times, he brought a personal check to South Carolina Democratic Party headquarters in March; informed that he should start a campaign account, he returned hours later with a campaign check.

"Though he says he is running, and running to win, Greene has not taken the steps one might expect from an active candidate -- some of them required by law," the newspaper reported last month. "He has not filed with the Secretary of the Senate, according to its Washington, D.C. office. Nor has he filed any disclosure reports with the Federal Election Commission, which the FEC requires by law."

Greene told Mother Jones the filing fee came "100 percent out of my pocket."

"I'm self-managed," he added. "It's hard work, and just getting my message to supporters. I funded my campaign 100 percent out of my pocket and self-managed."

While claiming to have pushed that message around the state, Greene would not disclose in the interview where he campaigned or how much money he spent to do so.

It's possible that the state Democratic party will use the felony charges to try to get Greene out of the race.

More CBSNews.com Coverage of Tuesday's Primaries:

highsea
09 Jun 10,, 21:04
Geez, he couldn't even wait till after he was elected to have a sex scandal....:tongue:

troung
09 Jun 10,, 21:35
He is going to be my write in candidate for 2012

troung
09 Jun 10,, 22:44
What does it say for the hand picking dude who was supposed to win when this dude crushes you in a land slide with zero effort...

Mystery S.C. nominee has pending felony charge
2 hrs 6 mins ago

Alvin Greene has been on the phone all day. That's to be expected for the guy who just won South Carolina's Democratic Senate primary and is facing incumbent Republican Jim DeMint in November. But everyone calling Greene has just been trying to find out who the heck he is — and one thing reporters learned Tuesday is that a criminal complaint was sworn out against him last year for allegedly showing obscene photos to a South Carolina college student and suggesting they go to her dorm room.

Greene, a 32-year-old unemployed military veteran who lives with his parents, defeated Vic Rawl on Tuesday for the Democratic Senate nomination despite having run essentially no public campaign — no events, no signs, no debates, no website, no fundraising.

The result has baffled political observers, who had heavily favored Rawl — a former state legislator, attorney and prosecutor who had the edge inasmuch as he actually campaigned and tried to win. Many in South Carolina (which has grandly lived up to its reputation as a political circus this year) suspect that somewhere, a crafty GOP political operative is snickering.

As far as the local political press can discern, the only positive step Greene took toward campaigning was when he plunked down a $10,400 check in March to satisfy the state's filing fee and get on the ballot. He never registered a campaign committee with the Federal Election Commission or filed a financial disclosure with the Senate Ethics Committee.

So why did he run, and how did he win? "I campaigned," Greene, who spoke rapidly and seemed distracted, told Yahoo! News in a brief interview. "It was a low-budget campaign. I funded it 100 percent out of my own pocket, and kept it simple — it was old-fashioned." Asked what, precisely, that campaign consisted of, and how much he spent on it, Greene demurred. "Not much. I had friends helping me."

He said he hasn't yet reached the $5,000 spending limit that triggers a requirement to file with the FEC, despite having spent that $10,400 filing fee (a pretty penny for someone with no job). Like any good politician, Greene tried to deflect questions about the particulars of his campaign to talk of "the issues."

"I graduated from the University of South Carolina," he said. "We have more unemployment than any other time in South Carolina history. Hold on, I have another beep."

Shortly after his Yahoo! News interview, the Associated Press reported that Greene was arrested in November on the obscene photo complaint. Charges are pending, and he hasn't entered a plea. One could, of course, note that such charges wouldn't necessarily hurt a candidate in a Palmetto state election season that's featured plenty of sensational sexual charges.

Greene's candidacy has raised suspicions that he may have been induced to run by Republican operatives in order to sow dissension in the Democratic ranks. It's not uncommon in South Carolina for Republicans to recruit African-American challengers to run against white frontrunners in Democratic primaries in the hope of drumming up racial tensions. (Greene is black.) The straw candidates aren't supposed to win — they're just supposed to create a racially divisive primary to damage the candidate's ability to put together a coalition in the general election.

It's nothing new to Nu Wexler, the former executive director of the South Carolina Democratic Party. "In 2004, on the last day you could file to run in the primary, we were wrapping things up when an SUV with a Bush-Cheney sticker dropped off three black guys who came in to file to run in some local races, and they all paid the filing fee with sequentially numbered cashier's checks from a local credit union," he said. In 1990, famed South Carolina political consultant Rod Shealy was convicted of violating campaign laws after recruiting a black candidate to run in a GOP primary for lieutenant governor in the hope of drawing out racist voters — a maneuver he thought would bolster support for his candidate.

Greene denies that he's a plant. But even if he is, the lack of an actual campaign seems to indicate that whatever plan he might have been a part of was quickly abandoned. Wexler says there may never have even been much of a strategy: "You have consultants doing this kind of thing just because they get bored, and they want something to tell good stories about. It's almost like fraternity pranks."

Greene's success is a testament both to the lackluster quality of the campaign run by Rawl (who raised $186,000 and ran ads) and to the, um, peculiar voting habits of South Carolinians. State Democratic Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler speculated to AP that Greene won because his name came before Rawl's on the ballot. Wexler says Greene is a "big name in South Carolina."

We called the South Carolina Democratic Party to ask if it intends to support Greene's candidacy, but haven't heard back. It could attempt to challenge Greene's win by claiming that he didn't pay the filing fee out of his own pocket — which, if true, would be a federal crime. "It puts them in a tough position," Wexler said. "You can't exactly start challenging the filing fees of every candidate."

— John Cook is a senior national reporter/blogger for Yahoo! News.





Copyright © 2010 Yahoo! Inc. All rights reserved.

* Qu

bigross86
09 Jun 10,, 23:14
The math doesn't quite work up for me. If he enlisted at 18 and has been in the service for 13 years, that means he's only been out for a year or so. If he enlisted at 19 he's been out for even less. He has every right to be unemployed after 13 years of service, could be he's just taking a break.

As for the $10,400, how much money do you spend in the army, anyway? I got paid less than $200USD a month and I managed to save about half of that. Rarely being home and having little to spend on while on base really helps with the whole saving money thing. Besides, isn't there some sort of grant you get when you get discharged?

gunnut
09 Jun 10,, 23:14
Reminds me of this movie:

The Distinguished Gentleman - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Distinguished_Gentleman)

troung
10 Jun 10,, 01:15
Every time I think about this I laugh....

Unknown Senate candidate in SC faces felony charge

By MEG KINNARD (AP) – 1 hour ago

COLUMBIA, S.C. — A day after an unemployed veteran charged with a felony shocked South Carolina's Democratic establishment by winning the U.S. Senate primary, party officials were still scratching their heads: What happened?

Alvin Greene, 32, didn't raise any money. He didn't have a website. And his opponent was a relatively better-known former legislator, Vic Rawl, who was already preparing for the general election.

Greene was considered such a long shot that his opponent and media didn't even bother to check his background. If they had, they would have discovered he faces a felony obscenity charge after an alleged encounter with a college student last fall.

After The Associated Press reported Greene's charge Wednesday, the leader of the state Democratic party said she asked Greene to withdraw from the race.

"I did not do this lightly, as I believe strongly that the Democratic voters of this state have the right to select our nominee," Fowler said. "But this new information about Mr. Greene ... would certainly have affected the decisions of many of those voters."

But Greene said he will not step aside.

"The Democratic Party has chosen their nominee, and we have to stand behind their choice," Greene told the AP at his home in Manning. "The people have spoken. We need to be pro-South Carolina, not anti-Greene."

Court records show Greene was arrested in November and charged with showing obscene Internet photos to a University of South Carolina student, then talking about going to her room at a university dorm.

Charged with disseminating, procuring or promoting obscenity, Greene could face up to five years in prison. He has yet to enter a plea or be indicted.

South Carolina state law prohibits convicted felons from serving in state office. Felons can serve in federal office, although the U.S. House or Senate could vote to expel any member deemed unfit to serve.

Rawl said he didn't know about Greene's arrest until reading media reports about it.

"It's an absolute surprise," Rawl said. "I can't really make any comments, because I don't know what's going on."

Greene welcomed a reporter into his childhood home he shares with his father Wednesday afternoon along the backroads to Myrtle Beach. Wearing warmup pants and a green family reunion shirt from 1993, he had to be repeatedly cajoled to get his picture taken.

He seemed overwhelmed by his new fame and admitted he has no campaign signs, staff, buttons or even a slogan. He hoped the state and national party leaders might call him back, this time to offer some help.

"I need my state and national party to help me," Greene said. "See, I don't have any signs. Those take campaign contributions."

He declined to comment about his pending felony charge, but the college student he was accused of approaching described the incident to the AP. It's not clear what Greene was doing on the campus.

Camille McCoy, a 19-year-old rising sophomore at the University of South Carolina, said she called campus police after Greene sat down next to her in a computer lab and asked her to look at his screen, which showed a pornographic website.

"I said, 'That's offensive,' and he sat there laughing," said McCoy, who was 18 at the time. "It was very disgusting. He said, 'Let's go to your room now.' It was kind of scary. He's a pretty big boy. He could've overpowered me."

McCoy, who is from Charleston, said she was stunned to learn that the same man she later identified from a photo lineup was running for office, much less had won a party's nomination.

"You're kidding?" said McCoy, who is a Republican. "Oh my gosh, that's ridiculous!"

Meanwhile, questions abounded in the day-after deconstruction of Greene's win.

Had Rawl been a victim of the anti-incumbent sentiment that swept the state's primaries? He only carried four counties, but one was Charleston, where he currently serves on county council.

Did Greene capitalize on some sort of a movement among either black voters or the unemployed? A subset of the Machinists' union ran cable ads in South Carolina encouraging the state's jobless to vote, but the group says it never promoted Greene or mentioned his name. The director of the state's NAACP chapter says he knew nothing about Greene, who is black, before the win.

It might come down to the simple fact that his name was listed before Rawl's on the alphabetized ballot, a possibility Fowler said she pondered Tuesday night.

Even if Rawl had been successful, one analyst was skeptical it would have made a difference against DeMint, a tea party darling who has marshaled a $3.5 million war chest to win his second term.

"A lot of it speaks to the lack of depth of the bench for the Democratic Party in South Carolina right now," said Scott Huffmon, a political scientist at Winthrop University. "Their best shot in November, really, is the Governor's Mansion."

Associated Press Writers Seanna Adcox in Columbia, Jeffrey Collins in Manning and researcher Barbara Sambriski in New York contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

===================
Accused Lewd Guy Alvin Greene Is South Carolina’s Democratic Candidate for Senate
by Haley Cohen
June 9, 2010, 4:20 PM
http://www.vanityfair.com/online/daily/2010/06/accused-lewd-guy-alvin-greene-is-south-carolinas-democratic-candidate-for-senate.html
alvin-greene-web.jpgTake someone unheard-of by the majority of the public—your dentist, your 7th-grade teacher, your creepy cat-lady neighbor—and multiply their level of anonymity by 10. Alvin Green, the surprise victor of yesterday's South Carolina Democratic Senate primary, is still less famous. “I wasn’t surprised, but not really. I mean, just a little, but not much,” Greene told Mother Jones. He was the only one.

Greene earned 59 percent of the 191,336 Democratic votes cast yesterday. After his shocking win, the Huffington Post had to solicit its readers for any tidbits about Greene, pleading: “Do YOU know anything about Alvin Greene? Do you have any photos of him?” The unemployed 32-year-old Army veteran lives with his parents and barely campaigned at all: he had no yard sign and no Web site, and he paid the $10,400 filing fee and all other campaign expenses out of his own pocket. According to Mother Jones, he didn’t show up to the South Carolina Democratic Party convention in April or file any of the mandatory paperwork for candidates with the state or the Federal Election Commission. The kicker? Charleston’s Live5news.com reported today that Greene is actually facing a pending felony charge for showing lewd Internet photos to a University of South Carolina student and suggesting they go to her dorm room.

So how the heck did this man beat out 64-year-old former four-term state lawmaker Vic Rawl, who ran a $186,000 campaign? State Democratic Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler offered an uber-scientific reason, speculating that voters unfamiliar with either candidate may have voted for Greene because his name appeared first alphabetically. (Note: This theory may also account for how Bush won twice.)

Greene will face off, and inevitably be crushed by Republican incumbent Jim DeMint in November. If the primary was any indication, it is likely that many more Republicans will show up to the polls. Republicans doubled the Democratic turnout in yesterdays race, with 413,699 Republican votes versus the Democrats’ meager 191,336. Perhaps an even more important factor favoring DeMint: D comes before G in the alphabet.

Keywords:

troung
10 Jun 10,, 01:28
So awesome. If they replace him with the true loser, the dude he beat what does that say :)) .

"You lost in the primary to a dude kicked out of the army, who has a pending felony charge for porno and did not spend a dime campaigning; you would be good for our state why?"

Sen. Nominee Was Kicked Out of Army, Has Felony Charge Pending
Alvin Greene, a Political Unknown, Faces Popular GOP Incumbent Sen. Jim DeMint
By DEVIN DWYER and STEVE OSUNSAMI
Alvin Greene, Surprise Win in South Carolina Primary with Felony Pending - ABC News (http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/2010_Elections/alvin-greene-surprise-win-south-carolina-primary-felony/story?id=10867602)
MANNING, S.C., June 9, 2010—

Alvin Greene, the surprise South Carolina Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate, was kicked out of the Army last year and is facing a pending felony charge, according to court records obtained by ABC News.

Greene, who has yet to enter a plea or be indicted, was arrested in November and charged with "disseminating, procuring or promoting obscenity" in Richland County, S.C., and faces up to five years in prison if convicted.

The U.S. Senate candidate was captured on video surveillance Nov. 4 trying to show "obscene photographs from a website" to a female victim on the University of South Carolina campus and go to her room without her consent, according to the affidavit.

Earlier today, the 32-year-old military veteran, who lives with his parents, declined to discuss the incident with ABC News during an interview at his home in Manning.

"I have no comment about that, I have no comment," he told ABC News.

Greene has been unemployed and living in his rural hometown 60 miles south of Columbia. He doesn't own a cell phone and there is no computer in his house.

He returned to Manning, Ga., last August when he was involuntarily forced out of the Army after a 13 year career because "things just weren't working ... it was hard to say." He had served as an intelligence specialist in the Air Force and later as a unit supply specialist in the Army.

2010 Election Maps: Follow the Senate, House and Governors' Races

Greene shocked South Carolina Democrats Tuesday when he won a commanding victory over four-term state lawmaker Vic Rawl in the primary without the help of a war chest of campaign cash or an orchestrated effort to win voters across the state. In fact, there is little evidence that he campaigned at all.

"I didn't spend much. ... I kept it simple, nothing fancy," he said in a sometimes rambling and incoherent interview with ABC News. "It was 100 percent out of my own pocket."

Greene's campaign slogan is "Let's get South Carolina back to work," and he stayed on message today, telling ABC News, "My campaign is about the unemployed. We spend more money on locking people up than we do on getting people jobs."

He admitted he was "a little surprised" by his victory but said he believed he had earned it.

"It's not luck I got 60 percent of the vote," said Greene. "If it was 51 percent maybe it was luck, but 60 percent of the vote is not luck." He did not provide details of how or where he campaigned.

Meanwhile, state Democratic Party leaders and Rawl, who raised close to $200,000 crisscrossing the state during the campaign, remain stunned that Greene captured 59 percent of the vote.

"Conventional wisdom was that Vic would win easily," said state Democratic Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler. "It is quite an upset. ... There really is no explanation for why he won."

Fowler said Greene's victory was a setback for Democrats' attempts to challenge incumbent Republican Sen. Jim DeMint.

"Now that becomes harder with a candidate with no political experience," said Fowler, who met Greene in March when he came into her office to file papers to run, but hasn't spoken to him since.

As Greene enters the national spotlight in his bid to unseat a popular senator in a conservative state, he faces tough questions about his personal and professional record and pressure to provide clear answers.

Analyst: Greene an 'Easy' Challenger for DeMint

"I'm looking forward to a September debate" with DeMint, Greene said of the effort to educate voters. "I would like an hour debate live on one of the networks."

"I will also need the party's backing with funding on the state level and national level," he said.

It's unclear how much money, if any, the party will give to Greene, whom many political analysts don't give a chance against DeMint.

"You had an absolute unknown [Greene] running against a virtual unknown [Rawl]," said Winthrop University political scientist Scott Huffmon. Greene's victory "says something about the depth of the Democratic bench in South Carolina, but not much more than that."

Huffmon says DeMint and Republicans have never been concerned with either potential challenger ahead of the general election and said conspiracy theories that Republicans may have facilitated Greene's victory to give DeMint a weaker challenger are misguided.

Greene's victory could have negative implications for the Democratic Party, however, since Greene could appear to be a "sacrificial lamb." "If the party doesn't put time and energy into helping someone unknown get respectable turn out, then it could look very bad for the party," he said.

ABC News' Luis Martinez, Michael Murray and Gregory Simmons contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2010 ABC News Internet Ventures

troung
10 Jun 10,, 04:32
Greene vows to stay in race
By: Jessica Taylor
June 9, 2010 10:04 PM EDT

South Carolina’s newly-minted Democratic Senate nominee remained defiant Wednesday night, saying he wouldn’t step aside even after charges surfaced that he had shown a college student obscene photos last fall.

State Democratic Party officials have called for Alvin Greene to withdraw from the race, but he told the Associated Press that “the people have spoken. We need to be pro-South Carolina, not anti-Greene,” and that he would remain in the race.

South Carolina Democratic Party Chairwoman Carol Fowler told POLITICO she remains hopeful Greene will reconsider, but in the meantime they are speaking with their attorneys to see if there are other ways to remove him from the ballot.

“I really don’t know yet if we do or not, or if we have to appeal to the better angles of his nature,” said Fowler. “I don’t think he is ready to do it right now, but we hope that he willwithdraw because it’s not helpful to have him on the ticket.”

Greene, a 32-year-old unemployed Army veteran, raised no money and had no staff in his primary campaign against Charleston City Councilman Vic Rawl. The two candidates were competing to face Republican Sen. Jim DeMint in November.

On Wednesday, the AP reported that Greene had been arrested in November after approaching a University of South Carolina student in the school library, showing her a pornographic photo on a computer, and then suggesting they go to her dorm room. Greene was released on bond but hasn’t entered a plea or been indicted.

As for how Greene ended up posting an 18-point win over Rawl, who campaigned and fundraised statewide, Fowler said she remains puzzled.

“I have no idea. I obviously have watched this campaign. I’m not a gambler, but I clearly would have put money on Vic Rawl winning,” said Fowler. “It’s clear he could have beaten Sen. DeMint.”

When Greene began to take a narrow lead over Rawl as returns began coming in, Fowler had first thought that it was Greene’s name appearing first on the ballot that could have been drawing votes. But with unofficial returns showing him winning by double digits, Fowler admitted that couldn’t be the main reason for his win.

“I think that ballot position might make a little difference in an election, but I don’t think it can make [a nearly] 20 percent difference,” she said.

Wednesday’s news was only another embarrassing revelation for a state that’s had more than its share of bitter and shocking politics. Most recently, the Republican governor’s race was marred by charges from two state political consultants that they’d had physical relationships with Nikki Haley, who placed first in balloting Tuesday to advance to a June 22 runoff. The Indian-American Haley was also the target of racial slurs by GOP state Sen. Jake Knotts, who referred to her last week as a “raghead” on an internet talk show.

Fowler said she’s aware of the state’s reputation, and that this latest episode doesn’t help the state or her party.

“South Carolina has repeatedly been embarrassed nationally by elected officials—almost entirely Republican,” said Fowler. “We don’t want a Democrat to join that group of disgraced public officials, and that is why we want Mr. Greene to withdraw.”

© 2010 Capitol News Company, LLC

troung
10 Jun 10,, 18:30
Alvin Greene Is America's Much Needed Political Rocky, Tainted Though he May Be
OpEdNews - Article: Alvin Greene Is America's Much Needed Political Rocky, Tainted Though he May Be (http://www.opednews.com/articles/Alvin-Greene-Is-America-s-by-earl-ofari-hutchin-100609-415.html)
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Alvin Greene is America's much needed political Rocky, tainted though he may be. The line American school kids hear the moment they set foot in a classroom is that one day you can be president. Most school kids long before they stop becoming school kids know it's just that a line, they can't and won't be president. Now enter Alvin Greene. Here's a guy with no job, no degree, no name recognition, no campaign organization, no website, and for all practical purposes no party (he never attended a Democratic Party function). And to top it off he's facing felony obscenity charges. Yet Greene gets 100,000 South Carolina voters to punch his name on the Democratic senatorial ballot.

The deep suspicion is that Greene is a GOP cropper; that is that he's a bought and paid for plant by the party to make fools of the Democrats and insure a cakewalk victory for GOP Senate incumbent Jim DeMint. Possible, it's happened before, the GOP has been accused of secretly bankrolling plants, shills, and croppers, and given the notorious cartoon antics of South Carolina politics, this can't be totally discounted. Greene had to plop down $10, 400 to get his name on the ballot. That's a lot for a working stiff to pay out of pocket, let alone for someone unemployed.

But while it's plausible to be suspicious, for a GOP dirty trickster to prop up Greene as a strawman would be too blatant. They'd be more likely to put money behind someone with some political involvement and name recognition. Money inevitably leaves a paper trail, and if the trail led back to a GOP clandestine operative, the scandal could blow the party out the water. If Democratic voters suspected hanky panky with Greene they could have easily ignored him and voted for his chief rival, Vic Rawl, a judge, who served on several state commissions, and was a four term state legislator. He was the Democratic Party favorite. But voters didn't. They overwhelmingly picked Greene

Republicans outnumber Democrats three to one in the state, and no Democratic presidential candidate has won South Carolina since Jimmy Carter in 1976. The chance of DeMint being toppled by a Democratic, especially a Democrat such as Rawl who's just as much a party fixture, even with the fierce anti-incumbent mood was unlikely.

Greene makes even more sense with even a cursory look at the Gallup poll released a week before the June 8 primaries. It found that sixty percent of voters, and nearly 70 percent of self-described independents, said they would rather vote for a candidate who has never before served in Congress.

Greene then is the perfect field of dreams for countless numbers of voters. He's the anti-candidate candidate who got on the ballot with nothing more than moxey, conviction and a vague desire to make change. Then without spending a king's ransom on the race, without the backing of an armada of telecoms companies, banks, lawyers, unions, tobacco companies and other special interests greasing their campaign wheels, and without cutting endless back room deals can actually win. The first and often the only question anyone who wants to run for office is asked is not what are your ideas and program but how much money can and did you raise? Greene is the candidate who can honestly answer not a penny. The money first and last question drives the polluted stream of American politics.

The Centre of Responsive Politics, a Washington think tank which tracks election spending, estimates that spending in the 2010 Congressional elections will total almost 4 billion. The five highest-spending Senate races were: Connecticut, $21 million. California $18 million; Nevada, where the Democratic Majority leader Harry Reid spent $17 million, and Arizona, where Republican John McCain spent $17 million. Senatorial candidates in Arkansas spent $12 million. California GOP senatorial nominee Carly Fiorina spent nearly $6 million out of her own pocket to bag the party nomination. That's just for this election. The Centre for Public Integrity found that the Republican Senate leader, Mitch McConnell, has spent nearly $50 million over the past quarter century on campaigning. One political financial watchdog group flatly branded this obscene spending legalized corruption.

The mind boggling runaway cost of elections has turned American politics into a rich person's sport, demolished any semblance of a political level playing field, and mocks the notion that voters have a Democratic choice. The Supreme Court's decision to rip away virtually all checks on corporate and labor union spending and its fresh assault on public financing (Arizona decision) will make political campaigning even more the playground of the super-rich.

Greene didn't simply beat these odds. He rewrote them. He is one antidote for those fed up with the stench of money and deal making in politics. Voters should take careful note of what Greene did in South Caroline with a felony rap hanging over him, with no name, no money, and seemingly not a prayer of a chance to win, and then does. That's what a Rocky can do, tainted though he may be.

Earl Ofari Hutchinson is an author and political analyst. His new book is How Obama Governed: The Year of Crisis and Challenge (Middle Passage Press).

Roosveltrepub
10 Jun 10,, 20:13
It will get real exciting if he is found to be a dupe like that fisherman a few crroked republicans put forward in the mid 90s

troung
10 Jun 10,, 20:16
It will get real exciting if he is found to be a dupe like that fisherman a few crroked republicans put forward in the mid 90s

I want him to debate, just once at least.

Wonder how much they will pay him to quit.

Might as well let him run, they have lost the election regardless.
=================
June 10, 2010
Lawmaker questions mental health of S.C. candidate
Posted: June 10th, 2010 03:24 PM ET

From CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby

(CNN) - Two African-American lawmakers in South Carolina met privately with Democratic Senate nominee Alvin Greene on Thursday to express concerns about how that state might be portrayed if he moves forward with his surprising and somewhat bizarre candidacy.

One of the lawmakers asked Greene to abandon his Senate bid but was politely rebuffed. The other came away from the meeting with the impression that the Democratic Senate nominee is battling a mental impairment.

State Reps. Bakari Sellers and Todd Rutherford met with Greene for roughly an hour in Columbia, where Greene was taping television interviews.

Sellers said he asked Greene to abandon his bid but was unsuccessful.


"Many of us don't believe that he is representative of the values of the Democratic Party in South Carolina," state Rep. Bakari Sellers told CNN.

Sellers said Greene "looked long and hard at how African Americans and South Carolinians will be portrayed" around the country, but said he would remain a candidate. The election results become official at 3 p.m. on Thursday.

Both Rutherford and Sellers said they wanted to meet Greene out of "genuine concern" for his well-being, after his out-of-nowhere victory over Vic Rawl in Tuesday's Democratic primary attracted a flood of national attention.

"I feel like he is being exploited, like there is a joke going and he doesn't get it," said Rutherford, who did not press Greene to drop his bid. "It is troublesome at best. I think his mental capacity may prohibit him from getting the joke."

He said Greene should undergo "some sort of mental evaluation" if he is to continue in the campaign. If it turns out he is mentally impaired, Rutherford said, "we are all in on this exploitation of someone that is vulnerable."

Still, Rutherford said he came away from the meeting that Greene does have, in part, a real political agenda. "He thinks that African Americans are being rated unjustly by the justice system, which is true, and he thinks our state can do better."

Filed under: 2010 • Alvin Greene • South Carolina

Genosaurer
10 Jun 10,, 21:34
"He won't do what we tell him to, therefore he must be mentally impaired."

Classy.

bigross86
10 Jun 10,, 21:49
"Many of us don't believe that he is representative of the values of the Democratic Party in South Carolina," state Rep. Bakari Sellers told CNN.

Guess what? That's exactly what he is, like it or not. You guys are the ones who elected him. Be it because they were tired of Rawl or just couldn't be arsed to care and voted for the first one alphabetically, you're stuck with him now. Don't play even dirtier politics be calling him mentally impaired

gunnut
10 Jun 10,, 21:55
Notice how a democrat calling a black man "mentally impaired" and no charges of racism follow... Had a republican called a black man "mentally impaired" all hell will break loose.

Roosveltrepub
10 Jun 10,, 21:59
Notice how a democrat calling a black man "mentally impaired" and no charges of racism follow... Had a republican called a black man "mentally impaired" all hell will break loose.

racism:rolleyes: that's a myth today. When have you ever seen racism in the public sphere?

bigross86
10 Jun 10,, 22:02
Why, I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about! Do you mean to tell me that the US is not all one big happy family?

Roosveltrepub
10 Jun 10,, 22:05
It's a sad comment about voters that a man who didn't have a website, signs, a tv debate or a campaign was their choice. It's a sad comment on the media his felony arrest wasn't known till the day after.

Roosveltrepub
10 Jun 10,, 22:06
Why, I have absolutely no idea what you're talking about! Do you mean to tell me that the US is not all one big happy family?

great article in times on jewish genetic origins i was 100 percent wrong.

gunnut
10 Jun 10,, 22:16
racism:rolleyes: that's a myth today. When have you ever seen racism in the public sphere?

There is racism. It's usually from the democrats.

Roosveltrepub
10 Jun 10,, 22:35
There is racism. It's usually from the democrats.

any examples of it?

bigross86
10 Jun 10,, 22:44
He's black and unknown, he damaged our campaign. He must be Mentally Handicapped

gunnut
10 Jun 10,, 22:51
any examples of it?

Do you want specific example or broad based example?

Specific ones are harder to come by since the media is left leaning and tend to sweep this under the rug. One that sticks out in my mind is the cartoon that depicted Condi Rice as a black parrot sitting on Bush's shoulder saying "whatever you say, masser."

Board base example would be the "sin taxes" favored by the liberal politicians; the "victim" mentality (of black people) perpetuated by the left; and the massive welfare system set up to discourage work.

Roosveltrepub
10 Jun 10,, 23:05
Do you want specific example or broad based example?

Specific ones are harder to come by since the media is left leaning and tend to sweep this under the rug. One that sticks out in my mind is the cartoon that depicted Condi Rice as a black parrot sitting on Bush's shoulder saying "whatever you say, masser."

Board base example would be the "sin taxes" favored by the liberal politicians; the "victim" mentality (of black people) perpetuated by the left; and the massive welfare system set up to discourage work.

The Democrats made that cartoon? Sin taxes are racist? Do you really think a man can make enough on welfare to discourage work? You think most people on welfare want to be on it?

bigross86
10 Jun 10,, 23:09
Do you really think a man can make enough on welfare to discourage work?

I do seem to recall an article posted a while back about how people prefer to stay on unemployment rather then get work. It's nearly the same money and much less effort

gunnut
10 Jun 10,, 23:13
The Democrats made that cartoon? Sin taxes are racist? Do you really think a man can make enough on welfare to discourage work? You think most people on welfare want to be on it?

Yes, yes, yes, and...yes.

troung
11 Jun 10,, 00:38
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zraver
11 Jun 10,, 01:13
any examples of it?


The attacks on Condi Rice (sexist and racist) and Powell, the attempts to link Bush to the dragging death in Texas, calling a black candidate who they don't like mentally impaired, the Beer Summit, the attacks on Hillary (sexist), calling anyone who disagrees with Obama or his polices a racist, cropping the pic of man with a battle rifle at a rally to give the impression he was an angry white guy (he was black), Jessie Kackson, Al Sharpton, Lewis Farrakhan......

dalem
11 Jun 10,, 01:22
Yes, yes, yes, and...yes.

I'll challenge that last one. Back in the 90s I did some grunt work for the University of Michigan's Institute for Social Research. Since it's the part time job that I worked through high school and college I've done plenty of marketing research interviews and some mild (VERY mild) data analysis and some scientific stuff. One of the surveys I worked on there was a longitudinal study of wealth and welfare originally commissioned by the Johnson administration I think. It was called PSID and I can't remember what the letters stood for.

I do remember that in most cases the data we were able to see and the surveys I personally conducted showed that by and large, welfare programs work as they are supposed to and most (I wish I could remember the percentages) recipients are temporary and "unwilling". Balanced against that is a literally unbelievably deep core of abusers that get more attention than they perhaps "deserve" simply because of their actions.

I do think the U.S. welfare system could be mightily improved, but I think it works better than its reputation would indicate.

-dale

Roosveltrepub
11 Jun 10,, 10:52
I'll challenge that last one. Back in the 90s I did some grunt work for the University of Michigan's Institute for Social Research. Since it's the part time job that I worked through high school and college I've done plenty of marketing research interviews and some mild (VERY mild) data analysis and some scientific stuff. One of the surveys I worked on there was a longitudinal study of wealth and welfare originally commissioned by the Johnson administration I think. It was called PSID and I can't remember what the letters stood for.

I do remember that in most cases the data we were able to see and the surveys I personally conducted showed that by and large, welfare programs work as they are supposed to and most (I wish I could remember the percentages) recipients are temporary and "unwilling". Balanced against that is a literally unbelievably deep core of abusers that get more attention than they perhaps "deserve" simply because of their actions.

I do think the U.S. welfare system could be mightily improved, but I think it works better than its reputation would indicate.

-dale

I would agree with you 100 percent. I think that's twice now.

Roosveltrepub
11 Jun 10,, 10:56
I do seem to recall an article posted a while back about how people prefer to stay on unemployment rather then get work. It's nearly the same money and much less effort well, I'd agree but the fact is we don't have millions more unfilled jobs than we did 3 years ago so there are less jobs and more people competing for them. I'm sure there are some who would but the people I know who have been laid off are stressing about finding a job they can live on.

bigross86
11 Jun 10,, 11:32
I knew I saw that article somewhere:

Landscapers find workers choosing jobless pay | detnews.com | The Detroit News (http://detnews.com/article/20100510/BIZ/5100335/Landscapers-find-workers-choosing-jobless-pay)


Landscapers find workers choosing jobless pay
Jaclyn Trop / The Detroit News

In a state with the nation's highest jobless rate, landscaping companies are finding some job applicants are rejecting work offers so they can continue collecting unemployment benefits.

It is unclear whether this trend is affecting other seasonal industries. But the fact that some seasonal landscaping workers choose to stay home and collect a check from the state, rather than work outside for a full week and spend money for gas, taxes and other expenses, raises questions about whether extended unemployment benefits give the jobless an incentive to avoid work.

Members of the Michigan Nursery and Landscape Association "have told me that they have a lot of people applying but that when they actually talk to them, it turns out that they're on unemployment and not looking for work," said Amy Frankmann, the group's executive director. "It is starting to make things difficult."

Chris Pompeo, vice president of operations for Landscape America in Warren, said he has had about a dozen offers declined. One applicant, who had eight weeks to go until his state unemployment benefits ran out, asked for a deferred start date.

"It's like, you've got to be kidding me," Pompeo said. "It's frustrating. It's honestly something I've never seen before. They say, 'Oh, OK,' like I surprised them by offering them a job."

Some job applicants are asking to be paid in cash so they can collect unemployment illegally, said Gayle Younglove, vice president at Outdoor Experts Inc. in Romulus.

"Unfortunately, we feel the economy is promoting more and more people and companies to play the system and get paid or collect cash money so they don't have to pay taxes," Younglove said.

$12-per-hour jobs

A person becomes ineligible for benefits if he or she fails to accept suitable work, said Stephen Geskey, director of Michigan's Unemployment Insurance Agency.

The average landscape worker earns about $12 per hour, according to the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Growth. A full-time landscaping employee would make $225 more a week working than from an unemployment check of $255.

But after federal and state taxes are deducted, a full-time landscaper would earn $350 a week, or $95 more than a jobless check. The gap could narrow further for those who worked at other higher-paying seasonal jobs, such as construction or roofing, which would result in a larger benefits check.

The maximum weekly benefit an unemployed Michigan worker can receive is $387.

The jobless in Michigan are collecting for a longer time -- an average of 19.4 weeks last year, up from 15 weeks in 2008. State benefits last for up to 26 weeks.

The unemployed can then apply for extended federal benefits that increase the total time on the public dole up to a maximum of 99 weeks.

The federal jobless benefits extension "is the most generous safety net we've ever offered nationally," said David Littmann, senior economist of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, a free-market-oriented research group in Midland. The extra protection reduces the incentive to find work, he said.
It's impossible to know exactly how many workers are illegally declining employment, but 15 percent of Michigan's economy is underground, where people trade services, barter or exchange cash without reporting it to the government, Littmann said.

Working pays off

One former landscaper, who has been on unemployment for a year, said he will search for work when the benefits expire, but he estimates he earns about $50 to $60 less a week than he would if he were working.
"It's crazy," he said. "They keep doing all of these extensions."

But another analyst said working pays off for most seasonal laborers.
"That's a tough call for a family that's trying to pay its bills," said Sharon Parks, president and CEO of the Michigan League for Human Services, a Lansing-based nonprofit that helps low and moderate-income families toward economic self-sufficiency.

"But I think that by and large, people want to work because they need a paycheck," she said.

That is what other Metro Detroit landscaping companies are finding. They say business is up this season, and they have a steady stream of applicants eager to fill the orders.

"They can earn more money working for us than they can from getting unemployment," said Tony Konja, president of Artistic Outdoor Services in Farmington Hills.

"Finding talented people is, and always will be, a challenge," said Sam LaGrasso, president of United Lawnscape Inc. in Washington Township. "But if a company is focused on being good to its people and providing advancement opportunities, the talent will find you."

But B&L Landscaping in Oak Park finds the labor pool is noticeably weaker and less motivated, director Richard Angell said, even though the company still gets 80 to 100 applicants per week.

"We're just getting people coming in, filling out paperwork, hoping they won't get hired," Angell said. "... We're having a hard time finding quality applicants."

Gaming the system is "not surprising, but the question is how prevalent it is," the Unemployment Insurance Agency's Geskey said. "My gut tells me it may happen, but under the law, that person's benefits need to end."

Triple C
11 Jun 10,, 12:33
I do seem to recall an article posted a while back about how people prefer to stay on unemployment rather then get work. It's nearly the same money and much less effort

I've also read an article a few days ago on NYT about how unemployment rate might not go down (this is before they published it) because more people would be looking for jobs after the thaw. I think the scenario you highlighted would be true when the jobs available really, really suck.

troung
11 Jun 10,, 15:30
Olbermann seems unhappy....

Keith Olbermann Struggles to Get Answers From Alvin Greene -- Daily Intel (http://nymag.com/daily/intel/2010/06/keith_olbermann_attempts_to_ge.html)

Keith Olbermann Struggles to Get Answers From Alvin Greene

* 6/11/10 at 12:13 AM
* Comment 15Comment 15Comments

The enigma that is Alvin Greene appeared on Keith Olbermann's Countdown Thursday night in what can only be described as an excessively uncomfortable interview, one that shed little light on the baffling nature of his primary win. Olbermann asked the expected questions, all of which were met with long pauses and sentence-long (at most) answers from Greene, whom Olbermann later said may have been looking to an off-camera lawyer feeding him answers. Greene refused to comment on the felony charges he faces (though he admitted with a simple “yes” that he imagines he will have to talk about them at some point during the campaign) and also rejected rumors he is a Republican plant (“I've always been a Democrat and I still will be a Democrat in the future and support Democrats").

=============================


Friday, Jun 11, 2010 09:05 ET
The strange, wonderful success of Alvin Greene
By Gabriel Winant
http://www.salon.com/news/politics/war_room/2010/06/11/defending_alvin_greene
South Carolina Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate, Alvin M Greene, holds his own personal copy of his campaign flyer on Wednesday.

What does a party do when some random schmuck wins its primary? This is what South Carolina Democrats are now trying to figure out.

An unemployed accused felon named Alvin Greene appears to be their nominee for U.S. Senate. Party leaders had lined up a former state legislator named Vic Rawl as the chosen candidate against incumbent Sen. Jim DeMint, so they're wondering how the hell this happened. And talk is starting to circulate that Greene is some kind of Republican plant, aided by the other party. Said Rep. Jim Clyburn, the third-ranking Democrat in the House of Representatives, "There were some real shenanigans going on in the South Carolina primary. I don't know if he was a Republican plant; he was someone's plant."

I obviously don't know more about the situation in South Carolina than Clyburn, but I think the more pertinent fact is that nobody yet seems to know anything. So I'd like to mount a qualified defense of Greene.

First of all, upsets of this nature do happen once in a while, though rarely in statewide races. In 2009, Tom Suozzi, widely thought of as a possible future governor or senator in New York, lost reelection completely unexpectedly as Nassau County executive to an unknown. Suozzi was sitting on an unspent $2 million, presumably socked away for some future statewide race. In 2007, the New Jersey Republican stronghold of Morris County rejected Freeholder John Inglesino unexpectedly. Like some Democrats have done with the current South Carolina situation, Inglesino blamed his surprise defeat on his place on the ballot. (Note that there's actually good scholarship showing that ballot placement can have a real effect, though the argument is more about differences of a couple points in races between well-known candidates. It seems possible that it'd be dramatically magnified in races between unknown candidates, but that's just me speculating.)

More to the point, though, the South Carolina Democratic Party blew it, and is embarrassed. Of course its leaders are going to say Greene was a plant. That doesn't mean he is or isn't. It just means we shouldn’t take their word for it.

Instead, let's take note of the fact that the guy who was supposed to get nominated, Rawl, is one of those gray white dudes with a law degree who's spent the last 25 years sitting on commissions. There's nothing wrong with that -- it's called public service -- but there's no reason anybody should know his name. And, indeed, nobody does. In a poll of South Carolina Democrats last month, Rawl had a favorable rating of 4 percent. 82 percent had no impression of him.

It's also important to remember that Rawl was never going to win the general election anyway. It's South Carolina in a Republican year. That would be almost impossible for a good candidate to overcome, and Rawl is a weak challenger facing an incumbent who's at least moderately well-liked. Rawl was a classic sacrificial lamb, selected because he's plausible enough on paper not to embarrass the party or hurt the down-ticket candidates. So it's not as if nominating Greene really will cost Democrats a shot at the seat. You have to admit: there's something vaguely joyous about a no-name guy who lives with his mom screwing up the best-laid plans of the pack of pragmatic losers that is the Democratic leadership of South Carolina.

Granted, Greene's main issue in the race appears to be the reunification of Korea. And while that marks him as a bit eccentric (in case you hadn’t realized), it doesn't exactly make him David Duke, either -- so far as I can tell from the very limited information we have and the very strange interviews he's given. Nor does an odd but kind of sweet concern with Korea match up too poorly against of any of the wackjob ideas of incumbent DeMint, who once actually uttered the sentence, "The biggest tent of all is the tent of freedom," and has described our current government as "national socialism." (That is, Nazism.)

Obviously, it's still very possible that horrible things will emerge about Greene, and make me look like an idiot for writing this. (In fact, he already is accused of fairly horrible things -- though not convicted.) In the meantime, though, it's satisfying to see something as lower-case-democratic as a random black guy winning for no clear reason. We may not be able to interpret votes for Greene as any affirmative popular endorsement of whatever his candidacy stands for. But we sure can read it as a rejection of the dull, hackish cynicism of the Democratic Party and its expectation that South Carolinians will vote for some un-embarrassing non-entity. And if nothing else, that's kind of fun.

===============
Why remove him, DeMint has this one in the bag, the guy who was supposed to win lost to this guy so why bother?

troung
12 Jun 10,, 17:39
Vic Rawl's campaign relied on robocalls, emails to win
Posted by Chris Haire on Sat, Jun 12, 2010 at 8:54 AM
Vic Rawl's campaign relied on robocalls, emails to win | Haire of the Dog | Charleston City Paper (http://www.charlestoncitypaper.com/HaireoftheDog/archives/2010/06/12/vic-rawl-campaign-relied-on-robocalls-emails-to-win)
I'm not a book guy.

In fact, I can't tell you the last time I finished a book.

Not that I don't buy books, none of them novels. I do. I just read bits and pieces. I really don't have time to do much more.

But Vic Rawl, the Charleston man who lost the Democratic Party's U.S. Senate nom to the Manning mystery man Alvin Greene, has plenty of time to read books, according to his campaign website.


Vic is 64 years old. He reads extensively, finishing over 150 books in the last year. He also enjoys travel, golf, hunting, and off-shore fishing.

Hmm. With all of that reading, you've got to wonder when he found the time to campaign over the past year. His time-management skills must be epic.

Speaking of Rawl's disastrous campaign, according to Tom Schaller at FiveThirtyEight.comt, he was contacted by Walter Ludwig, Vic's campaign guy. Ludwig, who Schaller says is a close friend of his, offers up some enlightening information about Rawl's campaign ... or lack thereof.

According to FiveThirtyEight,


We, on the other hand, while we didn’t want to spend a lot of money on primary, we did do 220,000 robocalls (including one with Rep. John Spratt), and sent out about 250,000 emails in the five days before election. So, yes, we weren’t well known, but we had gone to 80 events around the state, and Rawl had some public profile previously, especially in Charleston County.

I don't know about you, but spamming voting — make no mistake, that's what robocalls and blanket emails are — do not a campaign make. You need campaign signs, mailers, TV ads, things that actually get your name out there to the people — especially those who don't know who the hell you were in the first place.

As for the Rawl campaign's claim that in some precincts Greene received more votes than the number of ballots counted, a claim Ludwig made to the Politico, one Lowcountry website is calling shenanigans.

According to the Charleston Reader, which I'll be the first to admit looks like someone's personal blog and not a more credible source, has this to say:


The claim of 25 precincts having over-votes for Greene appears to be completely without basis. It doesn’t take a “national academic expert” to check the facts. Any fool, including us, can go to the SC State Election Commission website to view the certified official vote counts in each race in each precinct in each county. Check the vote totals in the Democratic primary for US Senate in Spartanburg County against the total votes cast on a Democratic ballot in those same precincts. You’ll find that not only do no Greene vote totals exceed the total votes cast, but never do the combined Greene and Rawl totals exceed them either.

When is Rawl and the S.C. Democratic Party going to admit that Rawl ran a lackluster campaign, one that was virtually as nonexistent as the nonexistent campaign run by Greene, who it increasingly looks is a couple cards short of a full deck.

I had eggs for breakfast. They were tasty. My advice: Wipe the egg off yours and make an omelet.
Topics: State Politics, National Politics, Local Politics

Tags: Alvin Greene, Vic Rawl, Charleston Reader, Politico, South Carolina Democratic Party, Walter Ludwig

==================
Polling house says randomness, not tampering prevailed in Greene's win
Posted: Jun 11, 2010 6:07 PM EDT Updated: Jun 11, 2010 7:19 PM EDT
Tom Jensen Tom Jensen

Polling house says randomness prevailed in Greene's primary win - CHARLESTON, SC NEWS - LIVE 5 WCSC Breaking News, Weather, Sports (http://www.live5news.com/Global/story.asp?S=12637260)

By Sam Tyson email | Twitter

RALEIGH, NC (WCSC) - A polling information center has concluded the surprise primary victory for Alvin Greene was not a GOP plot, but a completely random outcome based on an election in which both candidates were unknown.

"I don't see any evidence of GOP chicanery," said Tom Jensen, the director of Public Policy Polling.

Rep. Jim Clyburn has called for an investigation into Greene's win, saying he has seen evidence of tampering in a number of races across the state. Jensen disagrees.

"Ultimately, what we're concluding is it was pretty much completely random who was going to win given that no voters had heard of either of the candidates," he said.

The group had assumed Vic Rawl would win the primary, Jensen said, because he was expected to campaign much harder and he had the political bonus of being an existing public official. The group had even done an early comparison between Rawl and Republican Sen. Jim DeMint. That's where Rawl's underlying problem appeared, said Jensen.

"We polled a head-to-head match-up between Vic Rawl and Jim DeMint at the end of May and what the polls found were that only 4 percent of Democrats had a favorable opinion of Vic Rawl," said Jensen.

Walter Ludwig, Rawl's campaign manager, questions the PPP's data, though. According to him, the Rawl campaign had a poll conducted ten days before the primary looking ahead to the general election in November.

"It only had us trailing Jim DeMint 50-43," said Ludwig. He say the campaign sent out 220,000 robo-calls and another 300,000 emails about Rawl's campaign.

The PPP data didn't initially give researchers pause, but on the back side of a primary race that has since gained national attention, the group has re-examined their findings.

"It's really not that surprising that someone with only 4 percent name recognition would lose a primary," said Jensen. "Even though Rawl was well-known in insider circles, he just hadn't made any impact on the voters at large."

When voters are put in a situation of choosing between two unknown candidates, they make decisions based on random criteria, said Jensen. Greene's victory could be attributed to any number of variables including "ballot positioning or the theory that his name sounded more African-American," he said.

But he said he was likely not any one factor, but a variety of conditions that led to Greene's victory.

Jensen said Rawl is to blame for his own loss because he didn't realize the political trouble he was in. The lack of name recognition across the state would have been replaced with at least some degree of identity had Rawl spent the needed money in radio and television advertising. Jensen said Rawls made the mistake of assuming he was going to win the primary because his challenger was a literal unknown. However, Rawls was also an unknown outside the Lowcountry.

Jensen calls it a cautionary tale for candidates. "Even if it seems like, on paper, they're the much more serious candidate than their opponent, they shouldn't just assume that the voters know that," he said.

However, Jensen did say he was curious to know who paid Greene's filing fee.

Ludwig said the Rawl campaign had no knowledge of any foul play, but he says Clyburn "knows a lot more about South Carolina politics thank you, me or the poll director at the PPP."

Greene is a veteran who has been unemployed for the last nine months and, according to recent records, only has $114 in his campaign bank account. Greene says he paid all of his campaign bills with his own money.

Since his primary victory, Greene has faced a host of hurdles to transition his campaign into a race against DeMint, the least of which is money or name recognition. The day after Greene won, The Associated Press released an article detailing Greene's arrest record and pending felony obscenity charge and state Democratic Party Chair Carol Fowler asked for his withdrawal. Friday, a group calling themselves "Defend Alvin Greene" held a press conference in Columbia asking for Fowler's resignation.

Greene has said he plans to stay in the race and has yet to comment on the obscenity charge.

Copyright 2010 WCSC. All rights reserved.
Comments

troung
12 Jun 10,, 20:08
FOXNews.com
FOXNews.com - Greene&#39;s Primary Opponent Calls for Investigation of Election Results (http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/06/12/greenes-primary-opponent-calls-investigation-election-results/)
- June 12, 2010
Greene's Primary Opponent Calls for Investigation of Election Results

Vic Rawl, who was the presumptive Democratic nominee in South Carolina's U.S. Senate race until his upset loss this week to unemployed military veteran Alvin Greene, is now calling for an investigation into the results.
fox news

Vic Rawl, who was the presumptive Democratic nominee in South Carolina's U.S. Senate race until his upset loss this week to unemployed military veteran Alvin Greene, is now calling for an investigation into the results.

Rawl, a four-term former lawmaker who was heavily favored to win Tuesday, has accepted the help of a couple of mathematics professors who found some possible anomalies in voting patterns, including Rawl's superior performance among absentee voters compared with Election Day voters. Another expert examined voting machines used in the primary to check for malfunctions or tampering.

"These findings concern the campaign, and should concern all of South Carolina," Rawl said in a press release issued late Friday. "We do not know that anything was done by anyone to tamper with Tuesday's election, or whether there may have been innocuous machine malfunctions, and we are promoting no theories about either possibility."

"However, we do feel that further investigation is warranted," he said.

Greene did not return messages left for him at his home.

A state Democratic Party official told FoxNews.com that the South Carolina law enforcement Division, or SLED, had launched an investigation Friday at the request of an unknown person. But neither the official nor a law enforcement spokeswoman could provide details about what is being reviewed.

Greene's stunning victory has raised suspicions among some who wonder how a jobless candidate without party support could pay the $10,440 filing fee. House Majority Whip James Clyburn, D-S.C., has suggested Greene is a Republican plant and has called on federal authorities to investigate where the money came from.

Greene, who says he left the military last August after 13 years in the Army and Air Force, has said he paid the fee by saving up two years of his service pay. He says he is a "legitimate candidate."

Greene also has rebuffed pleas from party officials to withdraw from his race against Republican Sen. Jim DeMint after reports surfaced that he faces a felony charge for allegedly showing pornography to a college student.

Greene won Tuesday with nearly 59 percent of the vote to Rawl's 41 percent, receiving more than 100,000 votes in the state's 46 counties.

But after spotting some "oddities," Rawl sent the election results to Walter Mebane, a professor of political science and statistics at the University of Michigan and Michael Miller, a professor of political science at Cornell University, who Rawl says are not affiliated with his campaign.

Mebane's test on precinct returns showed that the voting pattern for Rawl on Election Day could be expected to occur only about 10 percent of the time by chance.

"The results may reflect corrupted vote counts, but they may also reflect the way turnout in the election co-varied with the geographical distribution of the candidates' support," Mebane said in the press release.

Miller's test showed that Rawl performed 11 percentage points better among absentee voters than he did among Election Day voters.

"This difference is a clear contrast to the other races," Miller said. "Statistically speaking, the only other Democratic candidate who performed differently among the two voter groups was Robert Ford, who did better on Election Day than among absentees in the gubernatorial primary."

Rawl added that his campaign is receiving e-mails from voters and poll workers who experienced significant problems with voting for whom they intended.

Rawl said a further investigation is needed to find out exactly what happened on Election Day.

"South Carolinians would rather be 100 percent right than 90 percent uncertain," he said.

bigross86
12 Jun 10,, 22:42
Sore loser. Rawl, quit your bitching, next time try harder and maybe you won't lose to an unknown. Moving on...

dalem
13 Jun 10,, 17:20
Democrats are never satisfied with election results until someone "finds" a box of ballots in a warehouse or in an election worker's car. Then they know they can tweak it to win. Anything else, like a 10 to 1 loss, merits an investigation.

-dale

troung
14 Jun 10,, 21:12
defeated S.C. candidate Vic Rawl calls for investigation into Alvin Greene win
44 - Defeated S.C. candidate Vic Rawl calls for investigation into Alvin Greene win (http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2010/06/vic-rawl-calls-for-investigati.html?wprss=44)
Updated 3:17 p.m.
By Garance Franke-Ruta
The candidate defeated in the South Carolina Senate Democratic primary last week by an unemployed political novice called for an investigation into the results and filed a formal protest with the state Democratic Party.

"There is a cloud over Tuesday's election. There is a cloud over South Carolina, that affects all of our people, Democrats and Republicans, white and African-American alike," retired judge Vic Rawl, who was defeated in the primary by Army veteran Alvin Greene, said in a statement posted on his website Monday. "At this point, the people of our state do not have the basic confidence that their vote will be counted."

Greene, who lives with his elderly father, won the contest with nearly 60 percent of the vote. Primary elections in South Carolina are administered by the political parties, not the state.

The complaint now goes to the 92-member South Carolina Democratic Party executive committee, which will consider the protest at a public hearing Thursday in Columbia at which Rawl's attorney, F. Truett Nettles II of Charleston, will present the campaign's case. Greene or a representative for him may also attend and present evidence, though he is under no obligation to do so.

It is unclear how many members of the executive body will attend and vote on whether to dismiss Rawl's case, overturn the election or call for a new one, and there is no quorum number the body must reach before proceeding.

The burden of proof at the hearing will be on Rawl. "To overturn an election is a very high threshold even for this committee," noted Jay Parmley, Executive Director for the SCDP.

Rawl pointed to what he called "the strange circumstances surrounding Tuesday's vote," including "irregularities" in the election returns; anecdotes from poll workers and voters about "extremely unusual incidents while trying to vote and administer this election"; and "the well-documented unreliability and unverifiability of the voting machines used in South Carolina."

Those machines "were purchased surplus from Louisiana after that state outlawed them," Rawl said.

But the election returns from last Tuesday show fewer voters casting ballots in the Democratic Senate primary than the party's gubernatorial race, arguing against a surge in GOP crossover voting in the race -- a specter raised by some.

"Let me be clear: regardless of the outcome of this protest, a full and unblinking investigation of this election and the overall integrity of South Carolina's election system must go forward. Whether our protest is upheld or not, I intend to bring my full energies to electoral reform well into the future," Rawls said.

Rawl also addressed himself to the mystery man who defeated him.

"I would like to speak directly to Mr. Greene and say: 'Sir, this is not about you, and it's not about me. I wish you and your family nothing but the best in the weeks and months ahead,'" Rawl said.

The last protest hearing before the SCDP executive body took place two years ago and concerned a mayoral race in Florence.

By Garance Franke-Ruta | June 14, 2010; 3:17 PM ET
Categories: 2010 Election , 44 The Obama Presidency , 50 States

===============
Still No Election Paperwork From Alvin Greene
http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2010/06/still-no-election-paperwork-from-alvin-greene/58118/
Jun 14 2010, 12:33 PM ET | Comment
Alvin Greene still has filed no paperwork with the Federal Election Commission, meaning it's still tough to know who, if anyone, he's working with.

The 32-year-old unemployed Army veteran, who won the nomination to challenge Sen. Jim DeMint (R) last week with over 100,000 votes, paid $10,000 to file for candidacy in South Carolina, and he's still saying he paid that out of his own pocket. Greene is still giving strange interviews, which are difficult to watch. In this one, CNN's Don Lemon asks him if he's okay.

Greene is only required to file financial disclosures with the FEC if he's raised or spent over $5,000 (the $10,000 filing fee doesn't apply toward that), and it's unclear whether or not he has. "There's very little to no evidence that he actually did any campaigning. If there was, we haven't seen it," South Carolina Democratic Party spokesman Keiana Page said.

Had Greene filed a financial disclosure, any donors or consultants would be made public. James Clyburn, the House Democratic whip from South Carolina, has suggested Greene is a plant and has called for an investigation. Election-data analysts brought on by Vic Rawl, the Democratic candidate Greene defeated, are trying to figure out how Greene got so many votes; the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), meanwhile, has opened an investigation but isn't commenting on it.

As a matter of practice, the FEC doesn't ask candidates for paperwork unless they've already filed disclosures with information missing, or unless someone has lodged a complaint. Neither the South Carolina Democratic Party, SLED, Clyburn, nor Rawl have lodged such a complaint, according to the FEC.

troung
14 Jun 10,, 22:28
Clyburn Says All Three Dem Candidates He Thinks Are 'Plants' Hired GOP Firm
Christina Bellantoni | June 14, 2010, 5:02PM
Clyburn Says All Three Dem Candidates He Thinks Are 'Plants' Hired GOP Firm | TPMMuckraker (http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/06/clyburn_goes_further_all_three_sc_dem_candidates_h .php)

We've been keeping a close eye on the accusations and rumors coming out of South Carolina in recent days following a very strange Democratic primary. It's far from clear whether any of the mysterious candidates who performed better than expected for being little known were "plants" or part of any larger plot.

Today House Majority Whip James Clyburn accused all three candidates he's already suggested were "plants" of hiring Stonewall Strategies, a firm run by former aide to Rep. Joe Wilson. On MSNBC today charged that Democratic candidates Gregory Brown, Ben Frasier in SC-01 and Alvin Greene in the Senate race had employed Stonewall.

Clyburn (D-SC) has spent the last several days suggesting that something was amiss during Tuesday's primary, during which Frasier and Greene prevailed despite a lack of campaigning and no recognition from the state Democratic party.

Clyburn has jumped on our investigation digging up that his own primary challenger, Brown, paid a Republican consulting firm nearly $24,000 on "marketing" expenses. Clyburn said that's evidence there's something shady going on since the firm Stonewall Strategies is run by Preston Grisham, who until last fall was a longtime political operative for Wilson (R-SC).

Clyburn said Wilson's "campaign manager was managing my opponent's campaign," an inaccurate detail.

"So they were running my opponent's campaign, Alvin Greene's campaign and Ben Frasier's campaign down in the 1st district. The only federal campaigns on the ballot--those were being run out of the same shop, and that shop was Joe Wilson's campaign manager and former staffer on his congressional staff. So that's all the proof I need," Clyburn said.

We asked Clyburn's office for more details, or campaign filings, that might back up his new claim. We'll update if we hear back.

Clyburn pointed out that he'd asked the House to censure Wilson last fall for disrupting President Obama's address to Congress with a shout of "You lie!"

Reached today for a phone interview, Grisham told me that Clyburn was wrong. "I had never heard of Alvin Greene until Thursday after the primary," Grisham said. He said he didn't know who Frasier was. Frasier and Greene have not filed campaign finance reports so there is no way to check what they spent money on during the campaign.

"I haven't heard Clyburn use my name or my firm's name, he's kept it very generic," Grisham said. "All of these things are news to me."

Kyle Leighton contributed to this report.

bigross86
14 Jun 10,, 22:38
All this face-saving is getting very tedious, and Mr. Rawl's "this isn't personal" reeks like so much bullshit. It's very personal, cause he can't cope with the fact that he thought he was someone big, and turns out he's not that big, he lost to a nobody.

Most decent people would dust themselves off, wish their opponent good luck and try harder for next time. I guess this guy isn't a decent fella

troung
15 Jun 10,, 00:56
If he backed out it would be 6 years from now before he could try again and SC-Democrats would find someone else.

une 14, 2010 12:15 P.M.
The Beauty of Alvin Greene
His fairy-tale mystery victory is refreshing, because it subversively suggests that everything we think we know about campaigning is wrong.

The Beauty of Alvin Greene - Jim Geraghty - National Review Online (http://article.nationalreview.com/436274/the-beauty-of-alvin-greene/jim-geraghty?page=2)
How the heck did Alvin Greene, an unemployed veteran who lives with his parents and who had no discernable campaign activity, not only win the South Carolina Democratic Senate primary, but win by a wide margin?

So unexpected is this result that official Washington is shaking off its stunned shock and throwing a mild tantrum. No less than David Axelrod, senior adviser to President Obama, suggested Sunday that Greene’s victory was not legitimate. “It doesn’t appear [legitimate] to me,” he said on NBC’s Meet the Press. “The whole thing is odd. I don’t know how really to explain it. I don’t think anyone else does either.”

outh Carolina’s most prominent Democrat, Rep. Jim Clyburn, sounds convinced that the results cannot be genuine: “I know a Democratic pattern, I know a Republican pattern, and I saw in the Democratic primary elephant dung all over the place,” he told CNN’s State of the Union. Clyburn says he does not see himself supporting Greene, and says he believes Greene was planted in the race by someone.

The interest group Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington is demanding an investigation by the Federal Election Commission.

Still, an FEC investigation of what, precisely? Does anyone actually want to stake his reputation on an accusation of a vast conspiracy to commit ballot fraud, for the sole purpose of getting Alvin Greene instead of Vic Rawl on the ballot against Jim DeMint? Are we really supposed to think that a South Carolina GOP incumbent, elected with 54 percent of the vote in 2004, who has raised $6 million and is running in a good year for Republicans, was quaking in his boots at the thought of taking on a former circuit-court judge who came out of retirement to be elected to the Charleston County Council? We’re expected to believe that Republicans have the developed the ability secretly to guide unknown Democrats to primary wins, and that they used it here instead of, say, helping Mickey Kaus shock Barbara Boxer in California?

Perhaps the simplest explanation of Greene’s victory comes from Tom Jensen of Public Policy Polling, one of the few organizations that polled the Democratic Senate primary beforehand. Jensen observed, “When we polled the South Carolina Senate race two weeks before the primary Rawl had only 4 percent favorable name recognition with Democrats in the state. We could make up just about any name and ask their favorability on a poll and get 4 percent, so that more or less amounts to zero name recognition. In a contest where both candidates have no name recognition somebody’s going to win and people’s votes are going to be based on pretty random, nonintellectual judgments.”

That would explain a close race, but Greene didn’t win close; he won by a margin of 58 percent to 41 percent. Could ballot order, and Alvin Greene’s name being first on the ballot, have proven decisive? John Sides, an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at George Washington University, sees some credibility to that idea. “I’m not sure that the potential ballot order effect is implausibly large,” he writes. “Assume for the moment that voters were essentially choosing at random between the candidates. That would imply a 50–50 outcome. The actual outcome was 58–41, which only implies that 8-9 percent of voters were influenced by ballot margin.”

Research by political scientists at the University of Vermont points to this: “Joanne Miller and Jon Krosnick’s first report on name order effects on election outcomes focused on 1992 state legislative elections in Ohio. . . . In these elections it was revealed that a candidate listed first on a ballot received, on average, two-and-half percent more of the vote than those listed after. Stronger effects were seen when the party affiliations were not listed, races were minimally publicized, or there was no incumbent running in the election.”

In a primary, party affiliation was moot, there was no incumbent, and this race appears to have defined the term “minimally publicized.”

Shortly after the election, Robert Ford, an African-American South Carolina state senator who ran for governor, offered the theory that voters could tell Greene was black by his last name: “No white folks have an ‘e’ on the end of Green. The blacks after they left the plantation couldn’t spell, and they threw an ‘e’ on the end.” This is an intriguing and possible theory, except that the world is full of people with the last name Greene who aren’t black (such as Florida Senate candidate Jeff Greene, author Graham Greene, and actress Michelle Greene) and plenty of African Americans with the last name “Green.”

Of course, “Al Green” is the name of a famous gospel and soul singer. Beyond that, the candidate probably was helped by the fact that he had an exceptionally common name, and thus many voters might mistake the name on the ballot for some other “Al Green” they know. How many guys in South Carolina are known to friends, neighbors, associates, and acquaintances as “Al Green” or “Al Greene”? According to public phone records, there are at least six residents named “Al Green,” five named “Albert Green,” three named “Alvin Green,” and four named “Alan Green.” How many voters saw the name and thought, “Oh, I know him?”

There’s an intriguing contrast between Greene’s absentee campaign and the tactics of his rival. In making the charge that something suspicious happened, Rawl campaign manager Walter Ludwig bragged, “We did do 220,000 robocalls (including one with Rep. John Spratt), and sent out about 250,000 e-mails in the five days before election.” For perspective, only about 170,000 people voted in the senatorial primary.

Are there any forms of campaigning less desired these days than unsolicited robocalls and e-mails? Is it possible that some of Rawl’s outreach methods proved irritating enough to drive some voters to support Greene, even if they knew nothing about him?

Greene’s fairy-tale mystery victory is one of the most joyfully refreshing developments in modern politics, because it subversively suggests that everything we think we know about campaigns, elections, and democracy itself might be completely wrong. The voters may ignore almost everything we have been conditioned to consider important metrics in modern campaigning. Greene managed a runaway victory without television or radio advertising, a website, voter contact lists, any identified campaign staff, any yard signs, any bumper stickers, any get-out-the-vote operations — hell, as far as anyone can tell, Greene has no discernable positions or platform! He’s got . . . a name, and a check for the filing fee.

The authorities will have to sort out the matter of Greene’s arrest on charges of disseminating, procuring, or promoting obscenity. If he is found guilty, this Chauncey Gardiner tale will be tainted by a dark twist. But even with that disturbing revelation about Greene’s character, his story shows that in our messy, flawed, and unpredictable system of democracy, sometimes the longest of long shots can win, even if he doesn’t deserve the victory.

There is a famous Woody Allen quote that “90 percent of life is just showing up.” Alvin Greene just proved that sometimes, you don’t even need to do that.

— Jim Geraghty writes the Campaign Spot for NRO.

================
The Alvin Greene Story: No One Heard Of Vic Rawl, Either
Rachel Slajda | June 14, 2010, 12:34PM
http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/06/the_alvin_greene_story_no_one_heard_of_vic_rawl_ei .php

Alvin Greene, as you probably know, didn't do any campaigning before getting nearly 60% of the vote in the South Carolina Democratic primary for Senate. He didn't have yard signs or a web site, and he didn't attend the state party's big political events, including the convention and the Galivants Ferry Stump.

His opponent, Vic Rawl, did campaign, and now he's alleging possible wrongdoing in the primary and protesting the results.

But something that's been all but ignored over the past week is the fact that, for all his campaigning, Rawl had no more name recognition than Greene.

In a PPP poll (PDF) taken in late May, a few weeks before the primary, only 5% of voters overall -- and 4% of Democrats -- said they had a favorable opinion of Rawl.

"We could make up just about any name and ask their favorability on a poll and get 4% so that more or less amounts to zero name recognition," Tom Jensen of PPP said in a blog post after the primary. In the poll, Rawl's unfavorable rating was triple that of his favorable, at 14%, and a whopping 82% of voters had no opinion at all. PPP didn't poll on Greene.

Rawl's campaign spokesman says Rawl attended 80 events in 20 counties and traveled 17,000 miles to get his name out.

Asked why the campaign didn't seem to resonate with voters, his spokesman, Walter Ludwig, told TPM, "It remains to be seen what happened on election day."

Rawl announced today that he is officially protesting the primary results, alleging "strange circumstances" on primary day and "irregularities" in the results, partially blaming South Carolina's voting machines.

But when it comes to name recognition, Rawl is no Jim DeMint. Yes, he has political experience, but it's apparently not the kind that makes a big impression on voters.

Rawl's stint as a state legislator was in the 1970s and 1980s. He was a circuit court judge from 1991 to 2003, according to his web site. In 2008 came out of retirement to serve on the Charleston City Council, where his biggest claim to fame is, again according to his own web site, voting "to install solar panels on the Charleston County Jail to reduce energy costs."

gunnut
15 Jun 10,, 01:58
Democrats seem to be pretty good at whining. From Gore to Franken to boxes of ballots that all of a sudden "discovered" in some poll worker's car. They are never satisfied with democracy until it is their democracy.

troung
15 Jun 10,, 03:36
Finally someone who admits voting for him.... :biggrin:

Alvin Greene voter says it was the name that swayed her
Alvin Greene voter says it was the name that swayed her | WSAV TV (http://www2.wsav.com/news/2010/jun/14/alvin-greene-voter-says-it-was-name-swayed-her-ar-350549/)

Alvin Greene voter says it was the name that swayed her

He grabbed well over 50 percent of the democratic votes statewide in his run for US Senate. Same story in Beaufort County. But now, many who voted for Alvin Greene either won't admit it or now say they're ashamed.
By Holly Bounds
Published: June 14, 2010
» 0 Comments | Post a Comment
vote
nowBuzz up! Beaufort --

He grabbed well over 50 percent of the democratic votes statewide in his run for US Senate. Same story in Beaufort County. But now, many who voted for Alvin Greene either won't admit it or now say they're ashamed.

Here’s another twist to the blame game of how this whole thing happened.

"I voted for him because his name sounded like the singer and I'd never heard of Vic Rawl,” Gail Westerfield of Beaufort said. "I didn't have name recognition-- so I went with the person who had the most...famous name. It's so bad."

Could it be that a man behind gospel and soul helped Alvin Greene -- a man with little to no campaign -- become South Carolina's Democratic candidate for US Senate?

An ashamed Gail Westerfield says that's what it boiled down to when before her were two names she'd never seen before.


"I had just never heard of either of these guys and it never occurred to me that anything like this could happen or my vote and that this other person I was with who shall go nameless that our votes would contribute to South Carolina being the butt of a joke again. I mean, I feel terrible about it,” she said.

Since Greene's victory we've learned much, much more -- that many wish they'd known before.

The unemployed veteran is facing a felony obscenity charge. His mental stability has been questioned by political leaders, and the Democratic Party is asking that he withdraw. But Greene says he's not going anywhere, leaving Gail humiliated she had something to do with it all.

"I mean, we're rivaling Florida now for the ridiculousness. I don't feel good about being a part of that,” she said.

Gail says she's not trying to justify her bad decision but she does wish that the Democratic Party would have put as much vigor in informing voters about the candidates as they have in the post-game of the primary.

dalem
15 Jun 10,, 03:51
Democrats seem to be pretty good at whining. From Gore to Franken to boxes of ballots that all of a sudden "discovered" in some poll worker's car. They are never satisfied with democracy until it is their democracy.

Yeah, they are a pack of unrepentant cheating bastages, that's for sure.

-dale

Roosveltrepub
15 Jun 10,, 07:49
Democrats seem to be pretty good at whining. From Gore to Franken to boxes of ballots that all of a sudden "discovered" in some poll worker's car. They are never satisfied with democracy until it is their democracy.
I'd agree with that narrative if democracy loving republicans hadn't been ever been found to of done what they are being accused of. Either way Demint wins easy he talks a good game.

gunnut
15 Jun 10,, 09:28
I'd agree with that narrative if democracy loving republicans hadn't been ever been found to of done what they are being accused of. Either way Demint wins easy he talks a good game.

Are you saying one wrong justifies another wrong?

dalem
15 Jun 10,, 09:45
I'd agree with that narrative if democracy loving republicans hadn't been ever been found to of done what they are being accused of. Either way Demint wins easy he talks a good game.

Example?

-dale

Roosveltrepub
15 Jun 10,, 13:51
Example?

-dale


Benjamin Hunt, Jr.
While running a campaign to elect his sister Sherry Marts***** to Lieutenant Governor in 1990, Shealy, with the help of Robert Kohn, recruited unemployed black fisherman Benjamin Hunt, Jr. to run for Congress against Republican Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Shealy conspired to increase the turnout of white voters by playing to the racial fears of the South Carolina electorate. He promised Hunt, who had a prior drug arrest, $900 to run for Congress[9] and paid for his $2414 filing fee. Shealy also failed to report a $5000 campaign contribution to Marts***** from Laidlaw Environmental Services.[10]

Hunt's campaign was investigated by the solicitor's office, the FBI and the State Law Enforcement Division.[9] Once the masquerade was uncovered, the story gained widespread media attention. At Shealy's trial, former state Representative Robert Kohn testified that he was asked by Shealy to find a black man to run against Ravenel.[11] Shealy was convicted for violating campaign laws and fined $500.[4] Hunt said that he never received the money he was promised in exchange for running.[11] Shealy later referred to the fine as a "political parking ticket" and claimed it had a positive effect on his consulting business.[12] The incident prompted a rewrite of South Carolina’s ethics laws.[13]

Rod Shealy
If you hadn't heard this I have to question whether you are getting news or propaganda. It also speaks to the continueing issue of race in politics =/

Roosveltrepub
15 Jun 10,, 13:53
Are you saying one wrong justifies another wrong?

huh? Where do you get that from? All I am saying is what they are asking be investigated has happened before. It kind of makes the "it's just whining argument" thin.

dalem
15 Jun 10,, 18:12
Rod Shealy
If you hadn't heard this I have to question whether you are getting news or propaganda. It also speaks to the continueing issue of race in politics =/

a) source for your blurb?

b) if you think my ignorance of one Lt. Governor race from 1990 means that I must get only "propaganda", then I suggest that you are a fool.

c) compare the above to the Washington state governor's race in 2004 or the Minnesota senate race in 2008, which are the easiest examples of "I don't like the results so I will cry until my side "finds" ballots in weird places. Much like the SC thing we're discussing now - a guy wins a legitimate and fair election but the Dem loser doesn't like it so challenges the result.

d) have Republicans cheated (since 1990 even!)? I have no doubt that they have, but it is not systemic for them like it has become for Democrats.

-dale

troung
15 Jun 10,, 19:29
I have voted at random for people in the past.

The Alvin Greene Mystery Theories, Explained
The Alvin Greene Mystery Theories, Explained | Mediaite (http://www.mediaite.com/columnists/the-alvin-greene-mystery-theories-explained/)
by Philip Bump | 12:34 pm, June 14th, 2010

One week ago, as candidates for office in California, Maine, Virginia and several other states were in the midst of a last-minute push to get voters to the polls, it’s safe to say that Alvin Greene wasn’t. The nominee of the South Carolina Democratic Party for the United States Senate says that he “worked hard” during his campaign – despite all evidence demonstrating the opposite. He won by 17 percentage points, took 42 of 46 counties, garnered over 100,000 votes. Yet no one has turned up a single TV ad, radio spot, piece of mail in which Mr. Greene presents himself to the voting public – just one lonely flyer in the possession of the candidate.

Even more bizarre are the circumstances under which Greene came to be on the ballot. An unemployed veteran, he showed up at Democratic party headquarters in the state’s capital holding a $10,440 check drawn from his personal account. When told that he needed to pay from a campaign account, he left, returning a few hours later with a new check, identified as being from “Alvin M. Greene for Senate” in his own handwriting. This from a man who, the Associated Press revealed, is being represented by a public defender on felony charges following an arrest last November.

Something seems off. May be it’s the human tendency to seek patterns and explanations in things that happen, but theories are running rampant on the Internet – among them, that Greene’s a Republican plant, or that Republican voters in an open primary voted him into office, or that Greene is a guy with outsized ambitions who got (un-)lucky. As befits the situation, no single theory neatly answers every question.

Greene is a Republican plant.

This is the leading theory, advanced, among others, by House Majority Whip James Clyburn. Greene, the theory goes, was given the $10,400 by the Republican party to run against Vic Rawl, a former judge and Charleston City Councilmember. (Some theories speculate that Greene himself is a Republican, something he consistently denies.)

The rationale for doing this is murky. It is not atypical for political parties to find opponents for candidates they consider a threat. If the Republican party of South Carolina were worried about Rawl’s chances against their guy, incumbent Jim DeMint, they might want to give him something to fight in a primary. With the admitted benefit of hindsight, Rawl appears to be no such threat. He won his home county of Charleston by only 7% over Greene – not a good sign that he has the name recognition even in his hometown to take out DeMint and his national profile. Additionally, parties would normally seek out a candidate that could mount a real challenge – not just try to get someone on the ballot.

The strongest evidence that Greene was enticed to be on the ballot is that $10,440 check. Greene insists that the money is his, savings from his time in the Army. (The details of his “involuntary but honorable” discharge from the military are also shrouded in mystery.) If that’s so, he was nonetheless able to demonstrate to the state that he lacked financial resources for a private attorney in the matter of his arrest.

Greene’s hometown of Manning, SC, is over an hour away from the Party building in Columbia. If Greene is to be believed, he drove from Manning to Columbia, walked in to register as a candidate, was turned away because of the type of account the check was drawn on, went to a nearby branch of the National Bank of South Carolina (the closest of which was half a mile away), opened a new account, got a new check, and went back and filed within a few hours. He had with him, in his car, all of the paperwork he needed to open that business account, allowing him to open it quickly.

Possible – but certainly challenging.

Greene was the beneficiary of uninformed voters – or conniving ones.

The Week presents a great summary of six theories of how Greene won. Each is easily dismissed.

One omitted from The Week’s list has some staying power. Featured (among other places) on Countdown with Keith Olbermann, this theory is that Republicans, voting in an open primary that allowed voters to vote for a candidate of either party, voted to submarine Rawl’s chances at a win.

There are two big problems with this theory. First, such a strategy would require either a coordinated effort by the Republican party (the kind of effort that leaves a lot of fingerprints) – or an awful lot of Machiavellian South Carolina voters. Neither seems likely.

The other problem is that the numbers don’t support it. South Carolina’s State Election Commission provides numbers from Election Day. If Republican voters were crossing party lines to vote against Rawl, that means that votes for DeMint, the Republican candidate, would suffer, since a voter can’t vote twice. It also means that one would expect to see more votes in the Democratic primary for Senate than the primary for Governor.

424,893 Republicans in South Carolina turned out to vote last Tuesday. 99.38% of them voted in the Gubernatorial contest (starring Nikki Haley, it was one of the most watched in the nation). In the Senate primary, 97.12% of Republicans also voted – a difference of only 2.26%. In terms of actual votes, the difference was 9,593 – fewer than 10,000 people voted for Governor but not Senator on the Republican ticket. This is well within what might be expected – DeMint was expected to walk to victory (and did) – something that always reduces interest.

On the Democratic side, 197,380 registered Democrats voted, with 86.24% of them voting in the Senatorial primary – a lower percentage, that is, than in the Republican primary. It was lower, in fact, than the percent that voted for a gubernatorial candidate; in that race, 95.93% of Democratic voters voted. Even if those 9,593 Republicans had crossed party lines to vote for Greene, he still won by over 30,000 votes – so it wouldn’t have made a difference.

(All of these numbers assume that people voted along party lines, but assuming cross-overs would make the point stronger, not weaker. If a large number of Republicans had voted in the Democratic Senate primary, it means a very large number of Democrats would have had to have voted in the Republican primary instead, which is even more unlikely.)

Elections are math problems. If X is larger than Y, you’ve got yourself a new President. Here, the numbers add up as one might expect, meaning that the open primary wasn’t a factor.

Greene got unlucky, and won

It’s difficult to argue that Greene is not a sympathetic figure. Soft-spoken, unfamiliar with having a public presence, much less public speaking, he’s being destroyed by much savvier interviewers eager to explore the boundaries of his discomfort. He’s a veteran of service in Iraq who is under heavy fire back at home. Questions – valid ones – have been raised about his mental capacity and emotional state. He’s in desperate enough financial straits that he asked an interviewer if he could be paid for talking. Even if he thought he’d run for Senate and ended up winning, as he claims, the aftermath of that chance occurrence has been blistering.

There’s a scenario under which Alvin M. Greene, in a fit of optimism, or of patriotism, or of democratic anger, drove the sixty miles to Columbia, and committed to running for the United States Senate. There’s another under which he is the unwitting actor in a poorly thought-out plot to subvert the will of South Carolina voters. A third posits that a man of limited capacity seized upon an unlikely ambition.

Which, we don’t know. And we might never find out.

Image of Greene with check from TPM.

bigross86
15 Jun 10,, 19:42
The one and only time I ever looked at my dad's Absentee Ballot (2000, I think) I knew only of Bush/Gore. I never heard of anybody else. My dad and I just picked names at random

troung
15 Jun 10,, 19:45
I know a person who voted for Gore because he name sounded cooler...

Greene v. Rawl = never met a "Rawl" before...

gunnut
15 Jun 10,, 20:31
huh? Where do you get that from? All I am saying is what they are asking be investigated has happened before. It kind of makes the "it's just whining argument" thin.


I'd agree with that narrative if democracy loving republicans hadn't been ever been found to of done what they are being accused of.

Sounds like you're trying to justify democrats' whining by pointing to similar failings of the republicans.

I condemn republicans whining too. Show me some. I've shown you democrats' whinings.

The difference between you and I is that you will defend the democrats to death, no matter what happens, where as I will say republicans are wrong when they're wrong.

troung
15 Jun 10,, 22:20
South Carolina Mystery Candidate Alvin Greene Was a Terrible Soldier
South Carolina Mystery Candidate Alvin Greene Was a Terrible Soldier (http://gawker.com/5563087/south-carolina-mystery-candidate-alvin-greene-was-a-terrible-soldier)
South Carolina Mystery Candidate Alvin Greene Was a Terrible SoldierIt's been almost a week since mystery man Alvin Greene inexplicably won South Carolina's Democratic senate primary and yet he is still largely a mystery. We spoke to one of Greene's former Army colleagues for some insight into the guy.

When Greene, a 32-year-old unemployed veteran with a pending felony obscenity charge, defeated a former judge and legislator, the media and political establishment were immediately suspicious. Since then, allegations of voter fraud—or GOP skullduggery—have dogged his campaign. (Yesterday, Greene's former opponent filed a formal protest over the results.) And some of even questioned Greene's mental state.

Having held no previous political office, Greene's most relevant professional experience is his 13-year stint as a supply and intelligence specialist in the Army and Air Force. In 2008, Greene was transferred from Korea and was stationed for six months with the Army's 1st Infantry Division in the United States. One of his colleagues during that time reached out to us yesterday. We chatted with him via email about Greene's lackluster service, his sparse social life, and why he doesn't think Greene is a Republican plant. (Note: We've concealed his identity as he's still serving in the Army and is not authorized to speak about Greene.)

Could you tell me a bit about your time working with Greene?

During the first couple of weeks of working with him, myself and most everyone else noticed that he wasn't all there mentally. Whenever he was given a simple task such as filling a temporary hand receipt it would never get done, mainly because he didn't know how to fill one out. And this is the most fundamental part of the job.

He also didn't show much interest in being a soldier. For instance, he was asked to do maintenance on the M249. This system is a little more complex than the regular service rifle. When it came to Greene's turn he was able to take the weapon apart but didn't know where to start when it came to put it back together. He showed no interest in learning and would mumble under his breath about not wanting to do it. So after a couple of months of trying and not getting anywhere, people just made sure he was where he was supposed to be and in the correct uniform. He would just basically come to work and stare at the wall till it was time for lunch and then do the same till it was time to go home for the day. The platoon sergeant tried to get him to go see a doctor for help but he would never seek help.

Greene is facing a felony obscenity charge for allegedly showing porn to a college student. Does this seem like something he would have done?

Greene really kept to himself. I never heard of him harassing female soldiers. However, when he left Korea he was a Private First Class (E-3), and when he came to our unit he was wearing Specialist rank (E-4). We didn't find out that he was just a PFC till after one of the Senior NCOs in the unit checked his enlisted record brief and found that he was wearing the incorrect rank. We asked him what was going on and he just evaded the questions and said it was a long story. A misunderstanding. Supposedly he has a UCMJ [Uniform Code of Military Justice] action against him from Korea, for what I don't know exactly.

There have also been questions about his mental state, and whether he is mentally fit to serve. Frankly, judging from his interviews he doesn't seem to be all there.

What you see in his interviews is what we had to deal with. People have been saying he acts that way because he is nervous, but it's not true. He has a difficult time communicating and really doesn't enjoy people asking him personal questions. I noticed when he mumbles incoherently it means he is agitated.

But I think he is a smart person. I asked him why he didn't go to Officers Candidate School since he has a bachelors degree [from the University of South Carolina] and he answered, "Why would I do that since that would require more work?" After he said that I realized what he was doing. He was being very lazy and working the system to get by. Even though it's obvious that he suffers from some kind of mental illness, I have worked with people that suffer from alcoholism to bipolarism and they would put more effort into what they did during their day to day life then he ever did.

There's been a lot of speculation about where he got the $10,400 filing fee necessary to run for Senate. He says he saved up from the Army. Do you think that's possible?

I think that was very possible. Greene didn't do anything during his personal time, and ate at the post dining facility religiously. The first time I saw his room all he had was a radio and a couple sets of clothes, which is not unusual for someone that just moved to a new post. But after 5 months all he had was just a radio and a couple sets of clothes still. Considering his lifestyle and coming back from Korea I believe he could have saved over $10,400, and spent it on putting himself on the ballot.

Greene has been very vague as to why he left the army. He says it was an honorable but "involuntary" discharge. Do you know the circumstances behind his discharge?

I really can't say what the circumstances were under which he was discharged, but I think it might have been failure to adapt. [Greene was transferred to a different brigade before being discharged last year.]

Can you shed any light on Greene's political beliefs?

The only time he would talk to me was when I would ask him about his views on politics. He would open up and actually talk. He would talk about how the country is going in the wrong direction and how Obama needed to get elected to fix the country's problems. But the only person he talked about was the President, only because of how much media he was getting at the time of the elections.

Why do you think Greene is running for Senate?

I guess he had nothing better to do. I don't think he was put up to this. I think he just did it to do it.

Send an email to Adrian Chen, the author of this post
=========================
Nothing Counts
Nothing Counts (http://localtalknews.com/home-page-columnists/marvin-wolf/420-marvin-wolf-alvin-greene-us-senate-south-carolina)
Tuesday, 15 June 2010 14:30 Marvin Wolf
marvinwolf1Alvin Greene did something that made a lot of people mad. Someone once sang, "Everybody loves a winner...." But they forgot to include Alvin in that lyric. You see, Alvin won the Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate in South Carolina. He did it the old fashioned way. What is the old fashioned way? Well, usually a politician makes a lot of promises, waits until he gets elected and then does nothing. Alvin took a shortcut in the process. He did nothing BEFORE he won. He didn't campaign. No slogans, no sound trucks, no kissing babies, nothing. Basically, he paid the $10,000 plus fee to get his name on the ballot, and then he sat back and did... nothing. And he won.

Now his losing opponent is calling foul and claiming that Alvin was cheating. Alvin's opponent, Vic Raul, came close to following Alvin's strategy; he spent ALMOST nothing on his campaign. But in America, he felt that the man who spent almost nothing should beat the guy who spent absolutely nothing.

Now the Democratic Party is claiming it was all rigged. Sounds easy to believe, except - the strategy works. I know this because once, I did it too.

It goes back to college. Sophomore year, to be exact, which for me was sometime soon after dinosaurs grew feathers and started to evolve. I hated politics, but was convinced by a few friends to run for Sophomore Representative because it would look good on my resume. I haven't claimed that particular credit in years, but at the time it seemed like a good idea. One friend, Stan, whose full name I actually no longer recall, but who was a statistics major, volunteered to be my campaign manager. His ulterior motive was to test out a statistical theory he was studying, but since the first thing I learned in college is that there are three kinds of lies - plain lies, damn lies and statistics - I figured a statistician was the perfect man for a political job.

My campaign manager's advice to me was to register and place my name on the ballot. "Now what?" I said. "Now nothing," he replied. You see, there are six positions open and they only allow 12 people to run, which means you have a 50 percent chance of ending up on the top half of the ballot. Since most people will vote for the first six names on a 12 ballot petition, you have a 50 percent chance of winning without doing anything. "But my name begins with W," I said. "Not a problem," he retorted, "I asked around and the names are positioned randomly so you have a good statistical chance of winning." "What if my name is on the bottom of the ballot?" I asked. "Well, then you'll probably lose, but it won't cost you anything. Just go on with your life and trust to the laws of statistics," he confidently laughed.

The next few weeks I saw my opponents' campaigning go into full swing. Every inch of every bulletin board was filled with flyers for one opponent or another. I asked my friend, "Are you sure I shouldn't do something? It wouldn't cost much to print up some flyers." "I forbid it," he said. "As your campaign manager you must trust my advice. Your opponents are depending on mere propaganda to win. But you, my dear friend, have the laws of mathematics and probability theory on your side. For all of their work, their expense, their sweat and toil, their chances of winning are no better than yours. So relax, and let the gods of statistics work their magic."

It was difficult at times. I saw all sorts of promises on the flyers. Some held rallies. Some held debates. Some even threw parties at which they served beer. But I bit my tongue and soldiered on; using all of my mental might to resist doing anything at all. I felt like a fool. I was sure I would lose by a landslide. I wondered if I would get even one vote. Then I remembered that I would vote for myself, so that was one vote, and my campaign manager would be two. When I told this to my campaign manager, he laughed even harder. "I forbid you to vote. You will screw up the statistical curve. But don't worry, I won't be voting for you either. This way we will have a pure result."

My campaign manager sensed my dejection. "Look, you can pick up the ballot just to see where your name is placed, just so long as you don't vote." I had never lost an election with zero votes before, but then again, I had never run for anything else before. Resigned that my first campaign would be my last, I promptly resolved to forget about the election altogether since I had no chance against the onslaught of heavy campaigning by 11 other sophomores.

Election Day came. I picked up a ballot and looked for the sophomore candidates. Twelve names were listed. I counted down the list. My name came up as number five. Depending on the same odds as a random coin flip, I had ended up near the bottom of the top six positions. I decided to trust in statistics and put the ballot in my pocket without voting.

For some reason, it took several days to count the ballots. I suppose voter turnout was heavy. My manager told me this was a good thing as a larger population produces a better statistical distribution.

Anyway, finally, the results were posted along with vote totals. I came in fourth out of 12 in vote totals. I suppose some students decided to vote every other candidate instead of straight down and as an odd number, the votes came to me. I don't know if it was happenstance, or statistics, or students fed up with the candidates whose names they did recognize but who were annoying them, or maybe it was all the marijuana my campaign manager was smoking, but I won. By literally doing nothing.

Some voters polled said they voted for Alvin because his name sounded like Al Greene, the singer/preacher. If that's the case, it's a shame his opponent was named Vic Raul instead of Lou Rawls. But unlike the Eddie Murphy movie, I don't think it was the similar name - it was just the laws of probability at work.

So hang in there, Alvin. I believe you. I've been there. Two candidates. Fifty percent chance of winning. Maybe your name was listed first. Maybe the other guy annoyed them. Or maybe your campaign manager was a statistician.

By the way, I heard you are facing a felony charge. Not so fast, Alvin. You're supposed to take office first, AND THEN get charged with a felony. At least, that's what the statistics say.

Marvin Wolf is a Newark consumer and bankruptcy law attorney who is a regular contributor to Local Talk News. This article provides legal information, news and individual opinion/satire, but not legal advice. Mr. Wolf can be contacted through his office at (973) 735-2740 or through his website Bankruptcy Lawyer in New Jersey Free Consult 07102 (http://www.wolfprotect.com).

bigross86
15 Jun 10,, 22:32
First of all, how do we know that the soldier in the interview even knew Greene and isn't making it all up out of thin air?

Second of all, since when is it a sin to be lazy? If he managed to stay around the Army for 13 years being lazy and doing absolutely nothing, I don't understand why all the uproar? He'll fit into government work perfectly

troung
17 Jun 10,, 16:06
Better the Christian Hating Lesbian Than the Black Man
Better the Christian Hating Lesbian Than the Black Man | RedState (http://www.redstate.com/erick/2010/06/17/better-the-christian-hating-lesbian-than-the-black-man/)
Posted by Erick Erickson (Profile)

Thursday, June 17th at 10:27AM EDT
4 Comments

Stuff like this is probably why Alvin Greene is the Democrats’ Senate candidate in South Carolina.

Greene, a man with no home, no money, and no job, beat the Democrats’ hand picked candidate for the right to lose to Jim DeMint in South Carolina. The Democrats are pounding their fists on the table claiming it was a dirty trick.

This is an intentional distraction. Why is it a distraction? Because otherwise the media would be pointing out that a man who spent no money at all and had zero name recognition beat the Democrats’ chosen candidate. That would mean (1) the Democrats’ chosen candidate truly sucked or (2) Democrats in South Carolina are genuinely stupid.

Behold the healing power of “and”.

Proving it is both, the Democrats are set to run a candidate against Alvin Greene as an independent. Who did they pick? Linda Ketner.

If the name sounds familiar it is because Ketner ran against Congressman Henry Brown in 2008. Ketner is a lesbian, which is largely inconsequential, except that added to it she openly hates Christians because of Biblical teachings against homosexuality that non-Christ following preachers tend to avoid or lie about. In the South, however, its readily discussed except among Episcopalians.

So instead of going with the black man who the Democratic voters of South Carolina picked to go against DeMint, the Democrats will fall back on the Christian hating lesbian voters have already rejected at the ballot in one of South Carolina’s congressional districts.

Maybe they should just give up.

=================
June 17, 2010
S.C. Dems push to get independent on Senate ballot
Posted: June 17th, 2010 09:31 AM ET
http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2010/06/17/s-c-dems-push-to-get-independent-on-senate-ballot/?fbid=UXopjlT_Avu
From CNN Political Producer Peter Hamby
Some South Carolina Democrats have launched an effort to put a more polished candidate on the ballot as an independent to run against Democratic nominee Alvin Green.
Some South Carolina Democrats have launched an effort to put a more polished candidate on the ballot as an independent to run against Democratic nominee Alvin Green.

Columbia, South Carolina (CNN) - As Democrats in South Carolina face the uncomfortable prospect of having unemployed political novice Alvin Greene as their Senate nominee in November, some in the party have launched an effort to put a more polished candidate on the ballot as an independent.

Allies of former congressional candidate Linda Ketner, who came within four points of unseating Rep. Henry Brown in 2008, are seeking 10,000 signatures by July 15 to get Ketner's name on the ballot along with Greene and the Republican incumbent, Sen. Jim DeMint.

Ketner confidante Tasha Gandy announced the "all volunteer viral and field organizing effort" in an e-mail to former Ketner staffers Wednesday. "Long shot?," she wrote. "Yes. Have crazier things happened in SC? Yes. Can you help?"

The former staffers have also launched a campaign-style website for the petition drive.

Doug Warner, who served as Ketner's finance director during her House bid, said Ketner, a Charleston businesswoman, has not objected to the effort. Warner said his colleagues wanted to explore what kind of support they could enlist before pushing Ketner to formally jump in the race.

"Because Mr. Greene is a not a strong candidate, our thought was that the people of South Carolina deserver to have viable choice when they go to the polls in November," Warner told CNN.

The Ketner effort comes as members of the state party's executive committee prepare to meet in Columbia Thursday to hear a protest from former state lawmaker Vic Rawl, the establishment-backed candidate who unexpectedly lost to Greene in the Democratic primary.

Rawl is seeking a new election, claiming irregularities in voting patters and flawed voting machines. It's unlikely that the 92-member executive committee will overturn the election results and make Rawl the nominee, but they could call for a new primary vote. It's not clear when a new election would be held.

Greene will not officially be certified as the Democratic nominee until August 16, when the party sends their candidate list to the state election commission.