November is almost here

Republican blogger announces write-in candidacy for Governor

Brian McCarty, an Upstate GOP blogger with a long history in Republican circles, has decided to stir the gubernatorial pot a little more than it's already being stirred by announcing his candidacy for Governor.

(A) write in vote for me is a stand for you. I am an old political hand and I know I have little chance of getting big votes, but a write in vote for me will not be wasted. I will keep this blog running long after Election Day, and I will keep calling it like I see it. The people who make a living everyday need someone standing up for them, and well, it looks like that guy is me.

RINO-bashing website pimping Democrats?

Will Folks, the editor and publisher of, is fond of proclaiming that he's waging a one-blogger war against those he judges to be a "RINO" via his website.

But we've talked with more than a few people who've insisted that Will does his blogging for hire, pointing out that his site has given favorable coverage to liberal Democratic candidates and taken shots at Republican candidates in general election contests, as well as noting his lack of disclosure about just what he does for a living.

So we decided to check it out. Since we read FITS regularly (but never with kids around due to some of the content), it was easy to check into these claims.

Hutto's financial problems boiling over into legislative spending account?

Getting re-elected isn't the only problem Democratic State Rep. Anne Peterson-Hutto is facing these days.

Her finances have come under scrutiny from several sources, including the Blogland, and recently, more information has come to light, adding extravagant legislative expenditures and at least one reported judgment for credit card debt to two foreclosure proceedings for the same property on James Island.

Spratt heading for defeat?

On the heels of a poll showing John Spratt's GOP challenger Mick Mulvaney running ahead by ten points, the New York Times' Five Thirty-Eight election forecast website, which had given Spratt a modest 51% chance at re-election, has changed their forecast to reflect Spratt's continued political slide.

Let's see if the Dems pull their last-weekend TV to try to salvage other races.

State House races to watch

With less than a week to go before Election Day, several State House seats seem to be hotly-contested. While Republicans are pushing hard to build upon strong voter sentiments in their favor as part of their "Drive for 75",  Democrats will focus upon holding back GOP ambitions. While most of these seats are not really surprising places for hot races, a couple were ones which a lot of observers initially felt were pretty safe bets.

We'll look at seven House races: Upstate Districts 26, 44 & 47, Midlands District 79, and Lowcountry Districts 115, 116 & 119. Democrats currently hold six of these seven seats, with the one GOP seat being an open one, as well as one of the Democratic seats.

Endorsement: Richard Eckstrom for Comptroller General

In the race for Comptroller General, the differences couldn't be clearer. Voters can choose between an innovative financial leader and proven fiscal conservative with a long record of public service and a perennial candidate who has dabbled in lots of things, including lobbying for questionable organizations, and shown a less impressive record of public service.

Richard Eckstrom, the Republican incumbent, is the Blogland’s choice for a lot of good reasons. A CPA who has served a term as Treasurer and two as Comptroller, he’s learned a lot about governmental finances, and put that knowledge to work in a number of initiatives, most notably in the online check registers which have opened up state and local government finances to the public. His continuing record of military service is also commendable as he is one of the highest-ranking officers serving in the South Carolina State Guard.

Eckstrom has been a thoughtful and deliberate teambuilder, picking battles and promoting ideas based upon their importance, not upon winning votes. He has won over the support of public officials from both parties for his initiatives, as well as stood up to his own party in the legislature over the budget.

Endorsement: Mick Mulvaney for Congress, Fifth District

Two years ago, American voters, seduced by the swan song of “Change”, installed Barack Obama as President. Less than a year later, it was seeing what “Change” was all about that motivated State Senator Mick Mulvaney to challenge incumbent Congressman John Spratt, when he attended a tightly-controlled public hearing held by Spratt over Obama’s health care legislation.

While Spratt has taken this kind of controlling approach towards his constituents, he failed to exercise control where it has mattered most: over the national budget, of which he oversees as Chair of the House Budget Committee. This was demonstrated by his failure to enact a budget this year, as well as failing to exert any degree of restraint over a budget process run amok.

But it’s par the course for Spratt, who has long played one tune back home and another in Washington: claiming to be a middle-of-the-road politico back home, while working hand-in-hand with a Democratic leadership which has rewarded him with his current Chairmanship. To try to divert attention from his record, he has engaged in a misleading negative campaign against Mulvaney, which has received considerable scrunity by the Blogland in recent weeks.

National observers writing Spratt off?

Since the beginning of the year, national observers generally rated the Fifth District race as a toss-up, with Spratt and Mulvaney polling in very close range of each other and very few undecided, including a July poll that showed the race a 46-46 tie.

The observers are well-connected and seasoned pros who make their predictions upon a number of elements, including published polls, leaked internal polling data, talks with politcal operatives from both parties, and watching the ever-important flow of TV dollars into races. More often than not, their predictions end up coming true.

So when they say someone's in trouble, they're usually right. Now they're starting to say John Spratt is in trouble of losing to Mick Mulvaney.

Endorsements: Constitutional question recommendations

The Blogland has talked plenty about people running for office, but there's more on your fall ballot than candidates.

That's right, we're talking about those often-confusing state Constitutional Amendement questions. This year, there are four questions being presented to voters.

Not surprisingly, the Blogland has an opinion about how to vote on these. We will present the plain-language explanation of each, followed be our recommendation in italics:

An Edenmoor resident speaks out

We were recently contacted by Deborah Kay Odom, a resident of the Edenmoor development since last year, whose perspective on the issue further challenges both the credibility of the claims made in the Spratt ads, as well as his intent to politicize the issue without any real regard for the problems associated with the development. Here is what Mrs. Odom had to say:

5th District residents sound off about Spratt

Mulvaney Commercial - Neighbors from Mick Mulvaney on Vimeo.

Robert Barber dodges lobbying questions

Four years ago, Robert Barber got caught in the closing weeks of his failed bid for Lt. Governor when information about his past lobbying relationships came to light. These relationshps, as well as his being an attorney, were inconvenient truths which were brushed under the rug during that campaign, as well as his ongoing bid for Comptroller General.

These truths were a little difficult to ferret out, as sources reported to us that hard copies of lobbying reports filed with the State Ethics Commission had been disposed of, making it difficult to determine  - until a campaign commercial four years ago tied Barber to lobbying for a bill which would have brought back the sport of cockfighting.

Early voting showing GOP voter surge nationwide

Two years ago, Democrats used early voting processes, which are becoming more widely common in many states, to boost their overall turnout. This time around, it looks like Republicans are getting into the game, and in a number of key states, preliminary reports suggest they're turning out strong.

In a story by Jim Geraghty at National Revew Online, early voting turnout by Republicans is way up in a number of states which will play key roles in facilitating a GOP romp next month:

Colorado’s early vote is 7.1 percentage points more Republican.

Iowa’s early vote is 10.2 percentage points more Republican.

Louisiana’s early vote is 25.9 percentage points more Republican.

Maine’s early vote is 13.3 percentage points more Republican.

North Carolina’s early vote is 14.9 percentage points more Republican.

In Clark County, Nevada, it is 7.1 percent more Republican; in Washoe County, Nevada, it is 11 percent more Republican.

He's not the only one picking up on this building political wave.

Democrat jumps ship, blames Spratt's Edenmoor attacks

In a press conference held in Lancaster this morning, Cotton Cole, a Democrat serving on Lancaster County Council, joined the GOP and blasted Congressman John Spratt for misrepresenting the issues related to the Edgemoor development in Lancaster County in his attack ad campaign against GOP challenger State Senator Mick Mulvaney. 

The Edenmoor attacks were cited as the final issue that got Cole to join the GOP, a warning sign that Spratt's decision to attack on this issue was starting to backfire.

Cole was joined by Mulvaney, as well as SCGOP Chair Karen Floyd, GOP National Committeeman Glenn McCall, and about 100 local Republicans.

The Blogland will be discussing more news related to backlash against Spratt's negative campaigning over the next few days.

Endorsements: For Congress - Jeff Duncan, Trey Gowdy, Tim Scott

Next year, at least three of South Carolina's six Congressional will be represented by freshmen, and maybe four, depending upon the outcome of the tight race for the Fifth District.

The Blogland endorsed candidates for two of the state's three currently-open Congressional seats in the Republican primary: Jeff Duncan in the Third and Trey Gowdy in the Fourth. The Blogland endorses them once more, as well as First District GOP nominee Tim Scott, to fill these seats in Congress.

We've endorsed these three Congressional candidates upon their individual merits, as well as their shared ground and potential to form a great team in Washington.

Alvin Greene is the "Ultimate Warrior" ... ?

First Alvin Greene proposed action figures to help create jobs, and now he's in a comic book.

But please, we think we've seen enough of Greene offering to take off his clothes.

Endorsement: Alan Wilson for Attorney General

In the first of our endorsements for the fall elections, the Blogland is supporting Republican Alan Wilson for Attorney General.

Alan Wilson has a proven record of service to his state and country as a state prosecutor and Army officer in Iraq. He’s laid out a plan for the office to be pro-active on issues related to homeland security, against abuses by the federal government, and work to get tougher on violent crime. The overwhelming support he’s received from both prosecutors and Sheriffs from both parties makes it clear he can be the kind of bi-partisan partner and consensus builder who will put results over politics in an office where politics has no place.

His opponent bills himself as “tough and fair”, but his career as a trial attorney suggests he’ll be tough on small businesses by remaining silent on issues such as tort reform and Obama health care, and the suggestion of being “fair” in the prosecution role which the office takes, against high-profile criminals, environmental abuses and other issues, should scare those who want a safer South Carolina.

Was Frank Holleman asleep on the job?

We've talked about how Frank Holleman, in his quest to continue being a taxpayer-funded political operative by being elected State Superintendent of Education, has been covering up his record in what we've come to know as his "Chicken Rules". By these rules, he's downplayed his career as a political operative, in hopes of passing himself off as some sort of education leader.

 But the truth is that he's nothing of the sort. In fact, Frank Holleman Holleman's Chicken Rules include a calculated game to cover up gross mismanagement while he was Chief-of-Staff and Deputy Secretary at the U.S. Department of Education during the Clinton Administration. In this role, Holleman was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Department, and was responsible for the financial management of the agency - with a disappointing record of mismanagement.

Democrats concede more House races

It's going to be hard for the Democrats to hold their House majority next month, as new reports show the DCCC has gone off the air in nearly twenty districts they now hold, giving the GOP a free shot at nearly half the seats they need to win in order to regain control of the House.

We'd previously reported that three House Democrats were being cut loose:  Reps. Suzanne Kosmas (Fla.), Kathy Dahlkemper (Pa.) and Steve Driehaus (Ohio). According to a story in the National Journal, the DCCC held off on ad buys for even more of their embattled incumbents: Reps. Mary Jo Kilroy (D-Ohio), Debbie Halvorson (D-Ill.), Betsy Markey (D-Colo.), Alan Grayson (D-Fla.),  Patrick Murphy (D-Pa.) and Steve Kagen (D-Wis.). Very little TV time was bought in three other districts where polls showed GOP candidates running strong against incumbent Democrats: Rep. Chet Edwards (D-Texas) - $42K, Rep. Jim Marshall (D- GA) - $9K, and Mike McIntyre (D-NC) - $62K.

In addition to those twelve races, there were seven open seats vacated by Democrats where Democratic ad buys were not reported: AR 2, IN 8, KS 3, LA 3, NY 29, and TN 6 & 8. That means the Dems are conceding nearly half the seats the GOP needs to take to win control of the House.

In South Carolina, the DCCC is only going on the air in the Fifth District, where they've committed $232K to air time. This also shows they're not worried about defending Clyburn in the 6th and are conceding the hotly-contested Second District and the open 1st, 3rd and 4th Districts to the GOP.

Former Democratic Attorney General supporting Alan Wilson?

It appears as if another prominent state Democrat has signed on to support Republican AG candidate Alan Wilson:

According to a search of the State Ethics Commission website, the former Attorney General made contributions to the following candidates this election cycle:

  • Wilson, Michael A Attorney General 11/02/2010
  • Meadors, John P Solicitor 06/08/2010
  • Chellis III, Converse A State Treasurer 06/09/2010
  • Peagler, Daniel E State House Representative 11/02/2010
Medlock joins other Democrats, including the majority of the state's Democratic Sheriffs, who have endorsed Wilson's candidacy.

Rep. Anne Hutto foreclosure alert

If you happen to reside at 688 Fort Johnson Road on James Island (located in the heart of House District 115) and are renting a house from State Representative Anne Peterson Hutto, you might want to start packing your stuff and looking into getting your rent deposit back - and quick.

According to papers filed with the Charleston County Clerk of Court and provided to the Blogland, Aurora Loan Services filed for Foreclosure on this property (10-CP-10-2961), owned by Rep. Hutto and her husband David, just days after one foreclosure action against the couple was resolved (09-CP-10-3031).

We know that's not Hutto's residence, as her legislative bio has her living at 659 Oakfield Drive on James Island.

Let's hope that Hutto's mismanagement of her money doesn't extend to her business practices, even though we suspect it does.

Our readers' take on John Spratt via editorial cartoons

A noted effect of blogs is to serve as an alternative outlet for news and views which, for a number of reasons, don't get exposure via traditional news media outlets.

Increasingly, Blogland readers send us news tips, reports, forward emails from discussions and send content to us, in hopes of getting it out to a wider audience. When the submissions are thoughtful, tasteful, creative, and in line with the views of this blogsite, we're more than happy to share them with our readers.

We received these cartoons from Jamie Walton, a retired US Army Lt. Colonel living in Rock Hill, who wanted to share them with our readers, and appreciate him sending them in. Any of our readers who have photos, news tips and even op-eds they'd like to share are welcome to send them our way. The email and mailing address is posted, so send 'em in.

Embattled Master in Equity stepping down

Last spring, the re-appointment of Dorchester County Master-in-Equity judge Patrick Watts became a hot-button issue when allegations surfaced about mishandling of foreclosure cases:

Watts has been under public scrutiny since the S.C. Supreme Court unanimously ruled in December that he violated a Summerville woman’s constitutional rights by allowing his secretary to conduct a foreclosure hearing involving her home without any testimony. Watts later signed an order authorizing the foreclosure, though he wasn’t present at the hearing.
The Blogland has been informed that Watts has opted to drop out of consideration for appointment to another term on the bench following a number of complaints which were filed against him. In spite of these concerns, he will serve out his term, which is expected to last until May of next year, while the vacancy is filled.

They're gonna teach us a thing or two ...

We want to thank one of our readers for sharing this email which originated from staff with the South Carolina Association of School Administrators, which distributed a scorecard prominently displaying Democrats Vince Sheheen and Frank Holleman.

When we accuse the creator of this scorecard of bias, it's for a couple of obvious reasons. Alphabetical order was used for the first race, but not the second. Also, the selectivity of issues was used to highlight a limited number of issues which both Holleman and Sheheen uave used in their campaigns.

This bias claim is also supported by discussions we've had with several people this afternoon who confirmed that "Molly" has actively campaigned for both Holleman and Sheheen this fall.

House candidate: Different seat, different party

Christine Jackson is the Democratic candidate for State House seat #98 in Dorchester County (the seat being vacated by Rep. Annette Young). In what is a strong Republican district, she faces an uphill challenge against GOP nominee Chris Murphy.

But if she loses big-time next month, it won't be her first time getting beat in a State House race.

Different seat, different county, different party. Same person, same yard signs. We're just wondering what she's going to run for next, where she'll run, and which party she'll file with.

Barber fails the chicken test?

Democratic Comptroller General candidate Robert Barber is making yet another bid for major office, having lost two previous bids: a 1994 bid for the 1st Congressional District and a 2006 bid for Lt. Governor.

While Barber has thrown barbs at Richard Eckstrom, the incumbent, questions over his lobbying relationships, which were an issue in his failed 2006 race have resurfaced via questions raised in a letter to the Barber campaign from Charleston County GOP Chair Lin Bennett regarding Barber's income as a lobbyist. These questions have included work to lobby on behalf of a group which has sought to lift the ban on the sport of cockfighting, a "sport" in which roosters fight to the death, often for gambling purposes.

Mr. Barber, the position you are seeking is an important one. The Comptroller General is the state’s accountant, and I probably don’t have to tell you that, given the importance of proper accounting of state funds, it is reasonable to expect that a candidate for this office who worked as a lobbyist to disclose his or her lobbying records.

As such, I am asking you to disclose to the voters – through the media – your lobbying contracts -- your total income from lobbying, including year-by-year amounts from each principal, from the time you began working as a lobbyist until late 2005, when you resigned in order to raise money for your campaign for Lt. Governor.

When contacted last night to see what (if any) reponse she'd gotten to her letter, Bennett reported that she had not received a response.

What Spratt's hiding about his latest misleading attack ad

There John Spratt goes again - making it up as he goes along in his struggle to fend off a strong challenge by Mick Mulvaney. Once again, he gets caught red-handed in an ad which attacks Mulvaney over the Edenmoor development - misleading claims which were discussed on this blog, as well as a Mulvaney campaign website: Edenmoor Facts Check.

This time, Ben Smith at the unmasks the hidden agendas and paybacks behind the star of Spratt's latest campaign attack ad:

The South Carolina Democrat has been fighting proposed changes to the federal student loan program, and the star of the ad, Gina Santoro, is one of three executives at an education collections firm that's been supportive of him on the issue.

Executives for the South Carolina education collections firm Todd, Bremer and Lawson gave Spratt a combined total of $2,500 after he wrote a letter in February to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan opposing changes to the Perkins loan program. The changes meant that that federal government would become a direct lender, cutting out the need for private companies to act as collectors. In his letter and subsequent press release about proposed legislation, Spratt cited the likely impact of the changes on private firms in his district, quoting a staffer at Todd, Bremer, and Lawson in his press release.

Santoro, Director of Client Services for the firm, gave the Spratt campaign a $500 donation in February.

We hope Fifth District voters see through this staged cheap shot and realize that at least some of Spratt's supporters could care less about anything other than their own personal gain.
We hope they'll also ask why, after 28 years in Congress, Spratt can't talk about his own record, instead of making up cheap shots to throw at his opponent. More proof that Spratt has failed the leadership test and has earned nothing more than retirement on Election Day next month.

Lancaster County turning Red?

Lancaster County has long resisted the GOP tide which has swept much of the South Carolina Upstate, serving as one of the biggest stumbling blocks for a number of GOP efforts to oust Fifth District Congressman John Spratt.

While the county reliably went for GOP presidential candidates, it consistently supported the re-election of Democratic Congressman John Spratt, sent Democrats to Columbia and seated them in county government with little exception. The county has been home to a number of powerful Democratic legislators whose seniority has been difficult for local Republicans to work against: State Representatives Tom Magum, who chaired the Ways and Means Committee in the 80s and Jim Hodges, who chaired the Judiciary Committee before serving one term as Governor, as well as Senator Red Hinson, who served nearly three decades in the Senate.

With the exception of former Senator Greg Gregory, the few GOP entrants who have been elected to its legislative delegation in recent years have relied upon GOP votes in districts which overlapped into heavily-Republican York County. But this year, Republicans finally seem to be making headway into turning the Red Rose County into GOP red.

Republicans surge in Clarendon County

Led by one of the Four Horsemen of the Political Apocalypse, Clarendon County GOP Chair Moye Graham, about 125 turned out for a cookout at the county's GOP headquarters - a turnout which many in attendance said was unprecedented for Republican events in that county.

Featuring a cast of local, regional and statewide candidates, including Secretary of State Mark "Dirty Harry" Hammond and Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom, the event also included a great dinner of chicken bog and Frogmore stew.

While two of the horsemen were present: Moye Graham and Earl Capps, the other two - Tommy Grimes and Mike Reino - were missing in action, preventing the kind of quorum that keep some shaking in their boots.

When that many Republicans turn out for a GOP event in Clarendon County, it's one of many signs of the growing grassroots momentum for the GOP that we're seeing across the Palmetto State.

The Blogland appreciates the hospitality of the folks of Clarendon County - our favorite rural county GOP in South Carolina.

Meet the MoveOn Army (of five)

Fresh from last week's strategy meeting on how to help re-elect John Spratt, MoveOn supporters decided to hold a "protest" across the street from the GOP headquarters in Rock Hill, an event that seemed to fare better than their one-man protest of Congressman Joe Wilson's office held back in August.

As shown in the photo above, their "protest" turned out a total of five supporters in this record-shattering turnout event.

Not surprisingly, the York County GOP rallied for a hastily-organized counterprotest. Unlike the MoveOn event, which was planned in advance, they turned out roughly two-dozen. Thirteen of which were shown in the photo below:

State House Republicans: I can drive 75

Touring the state today, the State House GOP leadership announced their goal to reach a record of 75 members of the 124 member State House of Representatives.

Stopping off in Charleston were State House Speaker Bobby Harrell, Majority Leader Kenny Bingham, Assistant Majority Leader Bruce Bannister and SCGOP Chair Karen Floyd. They were joined at the event by local GOP House candidates: incumbent Rep. Chip Limehouse, unopposed candidate Bill Crosby (#117), and candidates in three contested Charleston County races: Lee Edwards (#119), Peter McCoy (#115) and Sean Pike (#116), as well as Charleston GOP chair Lin Bennett and several local FairTax leaders.

Democrats bailing on House races

National Democrats are starting to bail on a number of Congressional districts they presently hold, beginning with a decision to pull the plug on television ad campaigns in six House districts they currently hold, on top of four open Dem seats they never invested in:

Reps. Suzanne Kosmas (Fla.), Kathy Dahlkemper (Pa.) and Steve Driehaus (Ohio), as well as open seats in Indiana's 8th district, Tennessee's 8th district and Kansas's 3rd district.

The Democrats are also likely to lose four open seats that the committee has yet to invest in: Tennessee's 6th district, Arkansas's 2nd district, Louisiana's 3rd district and New York's 29th district.

Adding those four districts to the six vulnerable ones where the committee has canceled its time suggests the DCCC could be conceding 10 seats at this point.

With decision time to buy or release reserved time approaching in most television markets, and Democratic polling in most races looking at least as bad now as it was in the summer, the Democratic write-off list seems bound to grow:

Parole Alert: Kenneth William Green, SCDC 00116020

We're asking Blogland readers to help keep a convicted murderer behind bars.

In 1982, Kenneth William Greene was convicted of murder and sent to prison for killing the grandfather of a regular Blogland reader. He has a parole hearing on November 10, and we're asking our readers to voice their opposition to his parole.

That's all you have to do to make your voice heard and help out a fellow Blogland reader. 

Dems going thug to silence opposition?

An editorial by the Wall Street Journal details a pattern of intimidation being waged by Democratic officials and activists against those who are supporting Republicans and challenging the Obama administration:

If at first you don't succeed, get some friends in high places to shut your opponents up. That's the latest Washington power play, as Democrats and liberals attack the Chamber of Commerce and independent spending groups in an attempt to stop businesses from participating in politics.

Since the Supreme Court's January decision in Citizens United v. FEC, Democrats in Congress have been trying to pass legislation to repeal the First Amendment for business, though not for unions. Having failed on that score, they're now turning to legal and political threats. Funny how all of this outrage never surfaced when the likes of Peter Lewis of Progressive insurance and George Soros helped to make Democrats financially dominant in 2006 and 2008.

This Thursday - Big GOP party in Clarendon County

If you can find I-95 and Lake Marion, then you can find your way to Summerton, which will be host to one of the fall's biggest GOP events in the Pee Dee region this Thursday night.
The event starts Thursday evening at 6 PM at the Clarendon County GOP HQ located at 114 Main Street (U.S. 301) in Summerton with Lowcountry Boil and a Boogie Bottom Perleau. Speakers at the event will include the following:
  • Secretary of State Mark Hammond
  • Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom
  • State Representative Murrell Smith
  • Jim Pratt, Candidate for Congress Sixth District
  • Tod Williams, Candidate for Solicitor
  • Barbara Mishoe, Candidate for SC House Seat 101
Several other campaigns will be sending Representatives to this event as well. The Blogland will be there, so you don't want to miss this event!

Outsider takeover of Spratt campaign continues

The takeover of John Spratt's campaign by Washington insiders continues with news of Nu Wexler, who seems to be taking a short break from his role as "Communications Director at U.S. House of Representatives", where he serves in Nancy Pelosi's inner circle, to serve as Spratt's campaign spokesman.

Wexler also worked for the union-sponsored liberal advocacy group Wal-Mart Watch, whose website has gone from attacking Wal-Mart to backing the top priority of labor unions: the so-called Employee Free Choice Act.

If nothing else Spratt has done has indicated that he says and does what Nancy Pelosi tells him, the assignment of Pelosi's spokesman to help salvage Spratt's campaign, should make it crystal clear to Fifth District residents that their Congressman is nothing but a tool.

National Democrats taking over Spratt campaign?

This week, the stuff hit the proverbial fan for John Spratt, with national political operatives taking over his campaign, beginning with reports of a meeting being held in Rock Hill by campaign representatives from the liberal Democratic group

Here's a note that was forwarded to us by a Blogland reader who registered to attend their Rock Hill meeting:

Thank you for signing up to attend an emergency meeting with John Spratt's campaign. With the election just 28 days away, the campaign is holding this meeting with supporters to lay out their plan for victory on November 2nd and how grassroots progressives can get involved. They're counting on MoveOn members to be there, so we'll be sure to let them know you're coming.

Packed house for Lowcountry GOP Victory rally

Lowcountry Republicans turned out in big numbers for a Victory Rally, opened up by Tim Scott, the all-but-certain winner of next month's First Congressional District race, and SCGOP Chair Karen Floyd.

The speakers focused their aim on the already-mounting costs and unfunded federal mandates associated with the Obama healthcare legislation.

The lunchtime crowd numbered approximately 100, which isn't bad for a weekday. Similar numbers are expected at Kelly's BBQ (U.S. Highway 78) in Summervillle this Saturday morning.

Watch your back - it's Rob Miller

Rob Miller is running for Congress on his military record, running on values such as teamwork and loyalty.

However, Miller's approach to politics is far different, based upon a strategy which is seen more often in places like Five Points and the Vista in Columbia than places like Iraq and Afghanistan: Use 'em and lose 'em.

After getting national Democrats to pour millions into his campaign, including a $2,000 check from House Squeaker Nancy Pelosi, he offers not to support Pelosi for House Speaker next year:

Blogland Exclusive: We meet ChickenMan

Yesterday, the Blogland was the first to meet and interview Chicken Man, a bird on a quest to get to the bottom of Rob Miller's evasions which are part of his campaign against Second District Congressman Joe Wilson.

We hope you enjoy this exclusive interview.

Residency questions lead to investigation of Dem House candidate

Benny Webb, the Democratic candidate for State House District 60 who is challenging incumbent GOP Rep. Phillip Lowe, has had a lot of questions raised about him, including his association with the former Sheriff of Lee County, who is under indictment for numerous corruption charges.

The Blogland reported a while back that there were questions being raised about his residency, and it looks like the Sumter County Democratic Party is investigating where he really lives. This is a guy who would have voters believe that him and his family would part with a $250,000 home to reside in a double-wide trailer:

Rob Miller meets the ChickenMan

It's a bird! NO! It's a plane! NO! It's the truth AND it's a guy in a bird suit ... it's ChickenMan!

The ChickenMan is on a mission to get the answers that Rob Miller is too chicken to answer in his challenge to Congressman Joe Wilson in the 2nd District. You can follow his adventures at the website.

The Blogland is hot on the trail of the ChickenMan, seeking his real identity and the real truth about Rob Miller. Stay tuned and we'll bring you the truth, with a side of (Rob Miller yellow) hot mustard sauce.

John Spratt throws out more lies, instead of Edenmoor "Facts"

The Spratt campaign went on the attack against Republican Mick Mulvaney this week, targeting a Lancaster County development and attempting to tie him into the failure of that project, alleging he put the taxpayers on the hook for personal gain.

As part of their ongoing negative campaign efforts, the Spratt campaign put a website up - - which makes a number of claims, but its only supporting source of evidence was a letter to the editor written to the Lancaster News by a former Lancaster County Council member - not a news story - in which even he admits that the bonds were being paid back by residents of the development, as was the original intent. The rest of the claims presented are not supported by any evidence.

However, there are other places to look for more factual information on this matter, including a news story published in the same newspaper by Christopher Sardelli. In this story, he met with several Lancaster County officials, including the current Chair of County Council, as well as Mick Mulvaney. What he reported clearly contradicted the claims made in the Spratt ad.

Kevin Brackett charges surviving robber with murder in partner's shooting

With Upstate Solicitor Trey Gowdy weeks away from a likely landslide win in his bid for the 4th District Congressional seat, 16th Circuit Solicitor Kevin Brackett is likely to become the Blogland's favorite Solicitor. Brackett's tough and no-nonsense reputation is very much in the mold of his predecessor, Tommy Pope (Pope, like Gowdy, is on the fall ballot, seeking House District 47 in York County).

One of many reasons of why we like Brackett can be found in his handling of a recent case where two men who attempted to rob a band after a concert in Rock Hill. One of the two thugs was erased when a band member drew his own gun and fired in self-defense, and the one who survived now faces murder charges for his part in the botched robbery attempt: