Sometimes I wonder if the Fourth District GOP race is really just a human re-enactment of the animal kingdom.
Not that animal kingdom where all the animals work together for mutual survival. I’m talking about the one where two animals struggle for dominance. They might end up destroying each other and a new leader emerges.
There has been an ongoing battle for ethical dominance (I guess) in SC-04. Yes, this is the “You smell!” “No, you smell!” debate from school, all growed [sic] up.
- February 12, 2010: The Inglis campaign filed federal and state ethics charges against the Gowdy campaign. The complaint alleged Gowdy used public resources (he is currently the 7th circuit solicitor) in his run for Congress and that he misused funds. In return Gowdy alleged (in the media) that Inglis had repeatedly misused taxpayer money himself.
- March 30, 2010: The State Ethics Commission dismissed the ethics charges against Gowdy; federal charges are still pending. The Inglis camp says this is because the state’s Ethics Commission is, I guess, not as thorough as it should be.
- April 2, 2010: Gowdy wants Inglis to reimburse taxpayers for the cost of the ethics investigation. I’m not exactly sure how that works (do we each get a check for less than a penny?). The Inglis camp once more says the fed investigation will end differently.
Naturally in any race you’d go after who you see as your biggest threat. In terms of fundraising, Gowdy is just that person to Inglis.
What do we make of this? I think this is the year when more people might look at this, engage in a collective eyeroll, and say, “Bump this; I’m voting for one of the others.” And not everyone. Just some people. People are tired of politics as usual. I know I am.
I don’t know how many Upstate voters are even aware of this back-and-forth at this point in the race. Nerds follow races this early. But TV season is approaching and something tells me they won’t be in the dark for long.