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As you may know by now, the Democratic voters of South Carolina have nominated a complete unknown with a felony charge to oppose Jim DeMint in the Senate race and a perennial candidate to run for the open seat in SC-01.  

So, how could this have happened?  Were the S.C. Democrats really so incompetent?  Did Democratic voters just choose alphabetically, as Carol Fowler claims?  Well, let's take a closer look.

One of the unsuccessful candidates of the night was Brian Doyle.   Here is his position on health care.

It's a lot like his position on jobs.

And guess what, Brian Doyle is a convicted felon as well.

Who paid Mr. Doyle's filing fee?  Who paid his legal bills?  Is anyone asking these questions?

Fortunately, Jane Dyer took care of business and won the 3rd District nomination.  Yet this joke of a candidate still managed to get 1/3 of the vote! 16,149 Democrats showed up in one of the most Republican districts in the state.  The last time there was a Democratic primary, only 14,485 Democrats showed up.  

Even fishier is that convicted felon Brian Doyle got more votes in the Democratic primary in 2010 against the 2008 candidate running for an open seat than Anderson City Councilman Philip Cheney got in hopeless race against another unknown for the right to lose to Gresham Barrett in 2006!

As for Ben Frasier, he has run before.  But how has he done?

In 2006, Mr. Frasier came in first in a three-way race against Ralph Ledford and Randy Maatta.  He lost the runoff to Maatta.  10,729 total votes were cast in that election.

2006 South Carolina Democratic Primary Results

In 2008, Mr. Frasier lost to Linda Ketner.  13,978 total votes were cast in that election.

2008 South Carolina Primary Results

In 2010, Mr. Frasier defeated Robert Burton and won the nomination.  Although turnout was described as light, somehow 18,951 votes were cast in that election.  

2010 South Carolina Primary Results

In his previous two elections, Mr. Frazier received 5,100 and 4,871 votes, respectively.  This time he received over 10,549, 5449 more votes than his best previous total.  18,951 - 5449 = 13,502, which is about the total number of votes we would expect in a Democratic Primary for this district.  So, are we supposed to believe that over 5,000 additional Democrats than in a normal race showed up to vote and they all voted for Ben Frasier?

The Senate race is even more bizarre.  In 2008, Bob Conley and Michael Cone "battled" to see who would get the right to lose to Lindsey Graham.  Neither candidate had any money, any support, or any chance. Neither ran much of a campaign.  And sure enough, the voters tossed a coin to pick between them.  Bob Conley won 50.36% to 49.64% out of 147,287 votes cast.  He won by pure chance.

2008 South Carolina Primary Results

In 2010, by contrast, Vic Rawl was a real candidate.  Alvin Greene was not.  But let's look at the results.

2010 South Carolina Primary Results

Alvin M Greene (DEM) 58.96% 100,053
Vic Rawl (DEM) 41.04% 69,645

Admittedly, Vic Rawl didn't campaign as hard as he should have.  But a battle between two unknowns would look like the "coin toss" of 2008, not a 59-41 blowout.

And did I mention that South Carolina uses electronic voting machines with no paper trail--machines that have been banned in other states for "critical security vulnerabilities."

Interestingly enough, Mr. Doyle, Mr. Frasier, and Mr. Greene are all African-American.  Their opponents are all white.  Now, that would put the Democrats in an tough situation given the history of race in the south because they would have to invalidate an election that granted a nomination to an African-American and give it to a white instead.  Such a move could split the SCDP along racial lines. They also know that white South Carolinians are prejudiced enough to believe that either the majority African-American Democratic voters either vote exclusively on the basis of race, or that they are too stupid to know for whom they are voting.

The rumors about Nikki Haley were done by rank amateurs. (Unless done by Haley herself, in which case I am impressed.)  Whoever did this was a pro.

Now, I am not a conspiracy theorist.  I am very skeptical of anyone who claims that an election was rigged because that's usually an excuse for a poor performance.  But these numbers are extremely improbable and deserve a second look before we accept the results of the South Carolina primaries.

Originally posted to wayward on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:06 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

    •  You are wrong about Ohio (6+ / 0-)

      I know the territory, I know what happened, and it's wildly unliekly that the intent of the voters was carried out. In fact, it's pretty much been proved it wasn't. About South Carolina, I cna't say,since i'm in Ohio, but there seems to be a LOT of things rotten there.

      Time to garden and kick Republican ass.

      by anastasia p on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:37:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  OK, not surprised that SC's elections were stolen (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Munchkn will tell you which states have remotely trustworthy election systems and which ones simply don't.

      Now, there are some with untrustworthy election systems where it's unlikely that any electronic fraud was committed (but we can never tell).  And then there's South Carolina.

      -5.63, -8.10. Learn about Duverger's Law.

      by neroden on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 08:06:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Orly Taitz found her running mate... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Seriously, I hope to see a nice bit of investigating on who set this guy up to run for the senate nomination.

      The well-known phenomena of psychological projection and confirmation bias account for 198% of conservative so-called 'ideas'

      by power2truth on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 09:27:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'd guess the computer voting machines. (6+ / 0-)

    Easy to rig an election with those machines. It's crazy that ANY district or state would use them.

    In any event, the bad guys won again.

    Greenspan admits his free market faith was "a mistake" - Reliance on self interest creates a flaw "in how the world works."

    by Otherday on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:11:26 PM PDT

    •  If this guy won more in repub districts, it's the (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      repub voters. After all, it's not like there was much of a contest on the repub side. If he didn't, it's the machines. It should be easy to check.

      The well-known phenomena of psychological projection and confirmation bias account for 198% of conservative so-called 'ideas'

      by power2truth on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 09:33:28 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Interesting diary... (9+ / 0-)

    I found that win odd...especially moreso once I found out about his record...

    Are there no Democrats in the whole state of South Carolina...White or Black capable of running...other than convicted felons

    Now I hear about machines with no paper trail...LOL...with all the history behind that...

    Looks like the South has risen again...


    SEE ME

  •  Every Recount of FL 2000 Found Gore Won. (6+ / 0-)

    He simply won, period. Of course that doesn't relieve him of the responsibility to have won bigger.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:16:57 PM PDT

    •  Only if you do a statewide recount (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Neither the recount requested by Gore nor the one ordered by the Florida Supreme Court would have gotten him there.  There was no provision for this under the law.

      The butterfly ballot is what screwed over Gore. That and not winning his home state of Tennessee.

      "I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat." - Will Rogers

      by wayward on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:29:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It is relevant (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        neroden, Munchkn, Trotskyrepublican

        because even if they only recounted the nine counties he requested, Bush's margin would have shrunk by so much that it was likely that they would have recounted the whole state. A lot of things screwed Gore, including the butterfly ballots and the purging of people from the voter roles because they had a name similar to a former felon's.

        Not winning Tennesee may or may not have made a difference, but he blew Ohio too — my Exhibit A for my ardent opposition to poll worship. By late summer 2000, polls showed Gore losing Ohio to Bush by double digits so he pulled his campaign out of state entirely. On election day, he lost by around three points. If he had stayed in, he would have carried Ohio, and Florida would have been moot.

        Time to garden and kick Republican ass.

        by anastasia p on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:40:59 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  You know it's possible (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lujane, Munchkn, bruddaone, James Allen

    taht there's a hangover effect from 2008, that a lot of 2008 first time voters, mostly African-American, came out on primary day (isn't that the Dem dream come true?) and decided to flex newfound political muscle voting for African-American candidates--and won by doing so.  (Not the Dem establishment's dream after all.)

    We who have been nothing shall be all. This is the final struggle. ~E. Pottier

    by ActivistGuy on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:19:54 PM PDT

  •  Bet any money (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    since S. Carolina has open primaries...this was all set up by the Reptile party.

    Rove needs to be water boarded.

    by regis on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:31:34 PM PDT

    •  But we had a hotly contested (6+ / 0-)

      Republican primary for governor, and for that theory to work, hard-core Republicans would have had to forfeit their vote for governor. Which seems hard to believe.

    •  Hard to keep that a secret n/t (0+ / 0-)
    •  Yes and No (5+ / 0-)

      The Republicans had their own hotly contested primaries and the Republican candidates were favored in all three races.  So, I doubt any significant number of Republicans would have crossed over to sabotage the Democratic primary, especially during a time of heated red-on-red violence.  (Although this was a Lee Atwater tactic back in the days when the Democrats dominated SC and the GOP candidate had no primary opponent. He famously knocked out Greenville Mayor Max Heller for Carroll Campbell back in 1978.)

      The Republicans were certainly behind finding these candidates and funding these candidates, but what else did they do for these candidates.  This is too sophisticated a job for the locals and even the Sanfordites.  It smells like DeMint with perhaps some help from Mitt Romney to me.

      "I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat." - Will Rogers

      by wayward on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 07:42:19 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  It was also pointed out that SC (0+ / 0-)

    has an open primary so there is speculation that Republicans crossed over to vote for the unknown candidate in order to ensure DeMint's eventual win against the no-name candidate in the General.  Since DeMint didn't need to worry about his own place on the ballot, they probably calculated that using their vote in the primary for the Dem was worth the time.

    Loyalty to petrified opinion never yet broke a chain or freed a human soul in this world--and never will. Mark Twain

    by whoknu on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 08:01:58 PM PDT

    •  They couldn't do that (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wayward, Munchkn

      Why wouldn't they vote on their disputed gubernatorial primary which was the only race everyone was paying attention to in order to decide the opponent of one of their safest incumbents?

      Rawl was basically a no-name candidate as well.

  •  Nah... All this... (3+ / 0-) make sure DeMint would get re-elected? Was he and his $4M on hand really scared of Vic Rawl, a virtual unknown even to the SC Democrats with a $180k warchest? In South Carolina? This year?

    And how do you explain the turnout on the republican primaries - propelled by a hotly contested gubernatorial primary that captured national attention?

    To me it was pretty simple: most Dems went to the polls due to the congressional/gubernatorial races. Then out of 10, 6 picked the first name on the ballot because they had no idea who the candidates were, 3.5 picked the second name on the ballot for the same reason and 0.5 actually knew Rawl and voted for him.  

    •  I'd like to believe you are right (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      teharper428, Munchkn

      But having a 59/41 split on two unknowns is like flipping a coin 169,000 times and having it come up heads 59% of the time.  It just doesn't happen.

      First name on the ballot is an unconvincing explanation, based on the 2008 senate race.  First name on the ballot might produce a victory, but not an 18 point victory.

      Perhaps there is an honest explanation for all of this (although the filing fee for these candidates was certainly paid by Republican money).  If so, I'd like to hear it.

      "I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat." - Will Rogers

      by wayward on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 08:24:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  One possibility (0+ / 0-)

      One possibility... and I will honestly admit that it is rather far fetched... is that Republican ops bribed people who wouldn't otherwise have voted at all to vote against Rawl and the serious candidates in the primary.  It seems improbable and unlikely, but it would explain the massive upswing in the number of votes cast in the Democratic primaries this year compared to 08 and 06.

      Looking back on electoral corruption in the old days, this kind of thing happened a lot in the past.  In the days of Tammany Hall, voters loyal to the machine (or who were simply paid or shanghaied into voting for Tammany) voted two, three, four, even five times.  Opposition voters were kept away from the polls.  Votes were bought on a regular basis.  This was the modus operandi of most political machines until well into the 1930s and 1940s, whether it was done in New York City, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Texas, Mississippi, Georgia, or South Carolina.  The general pattern was the same throughout; bribe, beat, and ballot stuff your way to victory.  It is not outside the realm of possibility to think that the Republican Party of South Carolina, or some part of it, has fallen back onto these methods.

      •  I lean to your theory Kakumeiji... (0+ / 0-)

        and that would be difficult to prove.  Unless you can get people to come forward. And they could have been told that they would be arrested for taking money to vote.  

        •  I can only have faith that someone will talk (0+ / 0-)

          Whether they do so out of conscience or stupidity, I have to hope that someone talks.  They generally do, eventually, although it would be better for them to do so sooner than later.  A conspiracy of this sort -- vote buying on a massive scale -- requires a lot of people for it to be carried off.  That's a lot of mouths to keep shut, and people like flapping their lips.  Furthermore, they tend to flap their lips even when they know they shouldn't.

          In the meantime, it falls to those of us who reside in South Carolina to start asking hard questions, and asking them persistently.  This thing wants investigation, and quickly.

  •  You are definitely edging toward the tin foil (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    greatdarkspot, Trotskyrepublican

    when you bring up the touch screen machines. Yes, they are a disaster waiting to happen, but rigging them is still a crime with serious jail time. Nobody, no matter how unethical, is going to risk that when the winner of the general is a foregone conclusion.

    I'd say the most likely methods were direct mail, robocalls, or those sample ballots that get handed out at the polls.

    And I think a big question somebody should be asking (and somebody probably is asking) is why haven't these guys filed their FEC reports.

    •  Risk? What risk? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueoasis, MrJersey, Munchkn

      South Carolina has totally unverifiable machines.  There is no real way to tell whether they were rigged after the fact.

      -5.63, -8.10. Learn about Duverger's Law.

      by neroden on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 08:08:48 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And totally unprofessional polling places... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        ...went to vote Tuesday and went pretty quickly through the selections. While reviewing my votes, the assistant that sets up the booth said "CONFIRM." at the appropriate time, which I suppose was because she was looking past me at the screen.

        I didn't say anything, because I was voting in the Republican Primary in a mad scramble to push the S.C. GOP into the arms of the teabaggers, and it didn't really matter. She was probably upset that I was voting for all the craziest nutters I could find on the ballot.

        And I didn't ask for my receipt this time, either.

        Something fishy definitely happened in this state on Tuesday in the Democratic doubt about it, for me.

        -5.38 -4.72 T. No public option? No mandate.

        by trevzb on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 08:33:08 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  I think this word "unverifiable" (0+ / 0-)

        does not mean what you think it means. It means there is no useful way the vote count can be checked for errors. It does not mean that nobody could possibly be caught tinkering with the machine.

    •  Also, do we know for sure (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      touchscreens were even in use? I keep hearing this muttered about Ohio 2004, but virtually no counties were using touchscreens. They stole the election the old-fashioned way — voter suppression in Columbus, Cleveland and on liberal college campuses, probable ballot-box stuffing in Southern Ohio.

      Time to garden and kick Republican ass.

      by anastasia p on Wed Jun 09, 2010 at 08:24:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not necessarily the voting machines (0+ / 0-)

      I am not saying that the voting machines were hacked, although South Carolina's machines are notoriously unverifiable.  All I am saying is that the results are very fishy.  

      Perhaps there is an honest explanation for this.  Perhaps this was a well-executed, but legal, dirty trick.  But this warrants further investigation as to why this happened because the results don't make any sense.

      "I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat." - Will Rogers

      by wayward on Thu Jun 10, 2010 at 05:26:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Silly (0+ / 0-)

    This is so silly.  Why bother do this?  Demint is safe - that would be like Pat Leahy trying to screw with the GOP race up in VT.  If you are going to screw with an election, screw with one that matters.

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