One of Stephen Colbert's sisters is planning to run for the vacant SC seat in the House of Representatives against our former disgraced governor, Mr. Nude-Hiking-On-The-Appalachian Trail Mark Sanford.

Could this be the most fun House race ever?

It's the seat made vacant after former US Sen. Jim DeMint resigned and Gov. Nikki Haley appointed the former 1st District Congressman Tim Scott to DeMint's Senate seat.

A website called St. Andrew's Patch is quoting SC Democratic Party executive director Amanda Loveday as saying Colbert's sister, Elizabeth Colbert-Busch will file her candidacy papers on Tuesday.

Colbert-Busch is the Director of Sales and Marketing for Clemson University’s Wind Turbine Drivetrain Testing Facility. Previously, she was the Director of Business Development for Clemson University’s Restoration Institute. The Mount Pleasant resident has three children and two grandchildren and deep ties to the Lowcountry. This will be her first foray into public life, according to The Patch
The filing period for the seat opened today and ends Jan. 28. So far seven Republicans and three Democrats have said they plan to run, The Patch reported.

A Google Documents file says Elizabeth Colbert-Busch was born in 1954, the eighth of eleven children. That she's a graduate of 1988 graduate of the College of Charleston with a degree in Intermodal Transportation and Logistics Management. (Never, ever heard of that.) She's apparently an expert in the ocean transportation supply chain, having worked for Clemson University and ocean trade organizations. She's on the College of Charleston's Business College Alumni Advisory board. She is married and has three children and two grandchildren.

The Google Doc lists one of her daughters is Mary Legare Middleton. The Middleton name is seriously old-money Charleston. We're talking, Middleton Place Plantation, still-exists-today as museum and National Historic Landmark, old-money Charleston. That should be good for fund-raising, if she needed any help besides her famous brother.


Built in 1755, the House Museum interprets four generations of Middleton Family, with extraordinary family furniture, silver, porcelain, rare books and portraits on display... (It is also the) birthplace of a signer of the Declaration of Independence.... Middleton Place
Mark Sanford held this Congressional seat for three terms before becoming a two-term South Carolina governor, according to The National Review

The Q&A with the Review includes these gems:

What would you say to voters who are troubled by the events of 2009?

Sanford: You have to, in essence, look under the hood. There’s a larger philosophical question. In life we’re all going to make mistakes, we’re all going to come up short. The key is, how do you get back up and how do you learn from those mistakes? . . .

(Please, do not make me look under his hood. I don't want to. And I haven't heard that much about what he learned or how he's changed. He cheated on his wife while Governor of South Carolina, kept cheating even after his wife found out, and is now engaged to his former Mistress and trying to run for office again. What's he learned?)


Geraghty: There was a CNN article about your engagement last year. Did you marry Ms. Chapur?

Sanford: I’m going to marry her, it’s just that simple. . . . It got pushed back with this latest exercise, and our early summer activity is looking like a late summer activity, and I’ll leave it at that.

(Hmm. That would put the marriage after the Election, I believe. Wonder if Ms. Chapur will campaign with him?) Doubt it.

 Last National Review quote:

Geraghty: How are things with your (four) sons?

Sanford: Really good. That’s a whole other journey. You struggle as a dad with letting them down, letting others down, that whole chapter of life, with the whole notion of reconciliation and forgiveness. I’m probably in a boat with literally millions of couples of America — things may not work in a marriage, but they certainly love their kids and their kids love them.

See? Millions of other couples did just what he did and are struggling, and he's just another one, except he wants to be in Congress again.

 Okay, I can't resist one more bit from the National Review. How did this all come about? Sanford's return to politics?

"I’m not saying it was God-ordained or anything like that, but a series of rather miraculous events have coincided here, that did not escape the attention of the friends who were urging me to look at this."
There you have it. God and the people want him back.

About the current Republican Party in the state: will be very interesting to see what this tells us about the party. It was severely divided when Sanford was governor. Hardly anyone liked him, especially his own party.

Then the affair came out. He was disliked even more. He was also far into his second term and could not run again. The race to replace him had already started and he'd already endorsed Haley.

So the traditional Republican power base was outraged even more when Haley won. It was a bitter primary. They like her even less after having her as governor for two years. (She is so... stupid is the only word I can come up with, that she's under the mistaken impression that the legislature works for her, not the people who elected them, and announced and followed through with a plan to "grade" legislators based on how well they supported her agenda. You can imagine how well that went over. As one lawmaker said, "Who do I give this report card to? My mother or my wife?)

Anyway, here comes this House seat race. Sanford comes back, something I think no one ever seriously imagined would happen. I haven't seen anything about whether Haley is supporting him or anyone else. And there will certainly be one more serious Republican candidate that the traditional party supports.

So I have no idea how this will play out. Sanford and Haley's Tea Party crowd? The traditional Republican Party? Or now, Stephen Colbert's sister?

Should be fun.

UPDATE: Sanford got the most votes of any Republican in the 14-candidate primary, but failed to get enough to avoid a run-off. It was 37% Sanford, 13% to a personal injury attorney endorsed by Rick Santorum.
   The run-off is Tuesday, April 2.
   Ms. Colbert-Bush won the Democratic primary easily and we will get to enjoy a 5 weeks of campaigning before the May 7th election.

   Two recent polls show Colbert-Bush leading Sanford, one by a margin of 47-44, one by 47-45.  
    Even more fun... it seems even South Carolina Republicans can't quite stomach another term in office for Sanford. His unfavorables in those two polls are reportedly 47% and 58% and 57, this in a district that went 58% for Romney.
   (My birthday is May 10, guys, three days after the election. All I want is for Stephen's sister to win!)

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