The Alvin Greene Mess: Accused Felon, GOP Plant, or Both?

Accusations fly in South Carolina

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Alvin Greene, who won the Democratic nomination on Tuesday to challenge South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint in November, is not your typical political candidate. A 32-year-old veteran, currently unemployed, Greene did no campaigning. But that's just the beginning of this weird story. Here are the goods on Greene.

  • He's Also an Accused Felon The A.P.'s Meg Kinnard reports, "Court records say he was arrested in November and charged with showing obscene Internet photos to a University of South Carolina student, then talking about going to her room at a university dorm. Charged with disseminating, procuring or promoting obscenity, Greene could face up to five years in prison. He has yet to enter a plea or be indicted."
  • ...But Still Campaigning, Sort Of  Kinnard follows up, "Refusing to discuss the pending charge, Greene says he's ready to get the message out about his platform, whose three main points -- jobs, education and justice -- were listed on a green campaign flyer he told a reporter he couldn't have because it was his only copy."
  • Accuser's Family Declares War  Mother Jones' Suzy Khimm talks to the family of the girl who alleges the felony charges against Greene. "The alleged victim's family is determined to bring down the candidacy of the unemployed army vet who stunned South Carolina on Tuesday with his Democratic primary win," Khimm writes. "Susan McCoy claims that Greene had already been told once by USC authorities that he was not allowed on parts of campus. 'He had no business being there,' she told Mother Jones. The incident was captured on a campus video surveillance camera."
  • Dem Establishment Embraced Green  Before the pornography charges emerged, DSCC chairman Sen. Bob Menendez told the Washington Post, "We take our efforts and time in the states where we have the greatest calculus of being able to engage and win ... so we weren't engaged in South Carolina. But I think one story out of South Carolina is the volatility that exists out there, where you have someone who spent no time and no effort on a campaign, and that guy could win. That shows the nature of the campaigns out there."
  • ...Now They Urge Withdrawal  The Hill's Sean Miller reports, "Less than 24 hours after Alvin Greene's surprise win in the South Carolina Democratic Senate primary, the state party has asked him to withdraw from the race because of a pending felony charge. ... The party said that as of Wednesday afternoon it had not received a response from Greene." Politico reports that Greene is refusing to step down.
  • Could Be GOP Plant?  The Guardian's Michael Tomasky wonders, "The suspicion is afoot that Greene's candidacy was a GOP plant. Apparently there's historical precedent ... And remember, this is the home state of Lee Atwater and the state where rumors that he'd fathered a black child helped do in John McCain. Not that South Carolina has anything like a monopoly on this sort of thing. Them big-city folk do it too. One standard trick in New York City, for some reason most prevalent in Latino districts, is to pay to put someone on the ballot with the same last name as your main opponent, so that there are two candidates named Lopez or whatever."
  • This Is All Just a Sideshow Outside the Beltway's James Joyner sighs, "Just what South Carolina needed: Another sex scandal. In the grand scheme of things, it really doesn't matter. Barring his own trip down the Appalachian Trail, DeMint was going to win easily in November regardless of who his opponent was. But, yeesh, this is a weird one."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.