If you haven’t followed the scandal down in South Carolina involving a blogger and a lawmaker, then be happy. The level of asshole-itude is incalculable. Bloggers actively trying to break up marriages with public announcements or meetings is never a pretty sight to see.
Short version: A political blogger known for being sharp tongued and full of attitude (not that there’s anything wrong with that, per se) announced on Monday that he had an affair with a married lawmaker who just happens to be the leading gubernatorial candidate in the Republican primary next month. He claimed the press was hot on the story and he was just coming out ahead of it. Funny about that since they don’t appear to have been at all. There were rumors, and one outlet may have looked into them, but no one was slated to publish anything as far as I’ve seen. The lawmaker gave an absolute denial that leaves no doubt her position is that she’s never had a physical relationship with any other man than her husband in their decade plus marriage.
Where it gets interesting: Erick from RedState has done some digging with South Carolina political folks and learned a few things. It seems that a competing campaign has been the source of the rumors that were floated, and all of “evidence” produced by the blogger – communication with the supposedly guilty campaign – actually says nothing of an affair, but really illustrates an effort to figure out more about the rumors. Even more interesting, RedState claims they will name the Republican campaign that paid the blogger to make these claims to destroy the other candidate.
Why this relates to this blog: First, if there are candidates out there who don’t wade into new media efforts very much, then there’s a black eye effect that could hurt other bloggers who try to reach out to campaigns. Second, I had my own – non-physical – encounter with this guy just before Charlotte that illustrates just how much of an asshole he is, and what a blowhard he is if he thinks he is getting attention.
I reached out to him about the Blog Bash since he seemed to be just a spirited blogger. (Unless you knew him through SC GOP politics, apparently his asshole factor wasn’t on full display.) He snapped back at me with some rant about the evils of the NRA because of a single grade issued like 10 years ago. He made sure to include cohorts on the email so he could brag that he told Fairfax to fuck off. Except, he didn’t know that I have my own version of “spirit,” shall we say. I wrote back to them all – staying sweet as pie (because that’s what a Southern woman does when she’s being evil) – pointing out that if he read even the first paragraph he would know that none of his complaints were remotely relevant to my email.
Getting publicly called out is a funny thing. Suddenly there was an apology email that didn’t include cohorts, but still declined, pointing out that he doesn’t consider himself to be a blogger, but a news outlet. So I dropped names of much bigger, national actual news outlets coming down to the events, and that really shut him up. I never made any effort, in the sweetness that would send most people into sugar shock, to invite him again.
It’s rather shocking to find out just how dirty South Carolina politics really is, when Mark Sanford’s “Appalachian hike” wasn’t anywhere near the worst of it.
When the news broke, I made the comment to Sebastian about how happy I was we got a glimpse of him before this happened. Since, after all, I like to keep the number of people who lie and cheat while breaking up marriages to a minimum at the Blog Bash.