Saturday, June 12, 2010



Today’s (i.e., Saturday, 6/12’s) Wall Street Journal reports on the curious case of Alvin Greene, a heretofore unknown unemployed 32 year old battling felony obscenity charges who ran no visible campaign yet won the Democratic nomination to run for the U.S. Senate against Republican incumbent Jim DeMint. Making the story even more curious is that Mr. Greene, seemingly so destitute that he qualified for the services of a public defender in his ongoing obscenity rap, came up with $10,400 first from a personal checking account and, when that didn’t past legal muster, in the form a check with “Alvin M. Greene for Senate” hand-written in the upper left hand corner. Voting patterns also seemed peculiar (at least by South Carolina standards; see below), with Mr. Greene getting 75% of the vote in more than 300 precincts.

What was most salient to this observer, though, was a comment from South Carolina State Senate Minority Leader John Land (also a Democrat) who opined that the Greene case was “just the craziest thing I’ve ever seen in politics.”

Hmm…The craziest thing Mr. Land has ever seen in politics?

Apparently, Mr. Land has never spent much, if any, time in Chicago and has never read my book, The Chairman, A Novel of Big City Politics (available on,, at independent bookstores throughout the Chicagoland area, and anywhere by order) and its upcoming sequel, tentatively named The Chairman’s Challenge and not available anywhere until later this summer.


Jay Fisher said...


My favorite theory on why Greene won so handily despite having no campaign at all was put forward by Jim Geraghty over at National Review Online.

Walter Ludwig, the campaign manager for Vic Rawl, stated that they made 220,000 robocalls and sent out 250,00 e-mails in the five days before the election. About 170,000 people voted in the Democratic primary in South Carolina.

How could Rawl lose to this guy says Ludwig?

In a low information race, obviously people voted for the candidate who didn't interrupt their dinner with annoying robocalls and didn't send unsolicited e-mails to their inbox.

I think candidates in Chicago may start doing robocalls for their opponent since people hate them so much. New age dirty tricks!

One still has to wonder about how Greene paid the filing fee, though.


The Pontificator said...

I think you're onto something, Jay. Perhaps we'll have to start smiling and dialing for Cousin 2:00 A.M.!