Sheheen not getting help from national party? Good.

The first thing I saw on this topic was that Dick Harpootlian was apoplectic about it:

Nu Wexler wexler Nu Wexler

God bless Harpo. RT @jmartpolitico: Harpootlian sounds off on $ sc dems are getting for gov race: “I’m pissed.”

Well, Dick gets worked up.

For my part, I’m glad Vincent Sheheen isn’t getting any real help from the national party. Who the governor of South Carolina is is no business of the national Democratic Party. Or, for that matter, of all those national donors Nikki Haley keeps leaving the state to court.

All of those people should stay out of our business.

Anyway, it doesn’t sound like Vincent’s hurting. Today he touted having raised $3.5 million:

Camden, SC–Today, the Vincent Sheheen for Governor campaign will file its pre-election campaign finance report with contributions totaling over $1.8 million for the period. Ninety-four percent of the contributions came from South Carolina.  The Sheheen campaign has raised a total of over $3.5 million in the race for governor.

Maybe that’s not enough to pay for the kind of inside-the-Beltway partisan campaign that Nikki’s running (going on about Obamacare and immigration in Arizona, rather than about South Carolina), but that, too, is a good thing.

37 thoughts on “Sheheen not getting help from national party? Good.

  1. Joanne

    I agree.

    I’m tired of those outside of the borders who don’t live here, don’t work here, don’t know the good, the bad, the ugly (unless they define it), don’t care about us except how it makes them look on a graphic on television telling us what to do.

  2. Ralph Hightower

    I spent most of 1994 in Iowa, so I saw Iowa based political ads. Love Boat’s “Gopher” mounted a campaign in the GOP primary against the 3 term incumbent governor, Terry Branstad. After the dust was settled, it was GOP Terry Branstad and Democrat Bonnie Campbell for November.

    The Democrat ad in Iowa was a “PowerPoint” black and white slide “Wrong on the Issues” (3 issues facing Iowans), ending with “Wrong for Iowa”. The GOP ad featured Terry’s wife in their home talking about her husband.

    I moved back home the weekend before the election. What did I see in South Carolina? The Democrat ad was a “PowerPoint” black and white presentation, “Wrong on the Issues”. The GOP ad featured David Beasley’s wife talking about her husband.

    For a disconcerting minute, I thought I was back in Iowa!

  3. Doug Ross

    Haley raised more than Sheheen in the same period. You can definitely sense the clutching at straws from the Sheheen supporters.

    Here’s the type of quote that makes the job of campaign spokesman laughable:

    ““The numbers clearly reflect the wave of support Vincent Sheheen has received in recent weeks as the race has become a dead heat,” said Kristin Cobb, Sheheen’s spokeswoman. “Unlike Nikki Haley, who has traveled the country soliciting dollars from out-of-state special interests, our money has come almost exclusively from South Carolina donors.”

    Read more:

    A “dead heat”? Nine points down is a “dead heat”? Sheheen hasn’t polled even 45% in ANY poll yet.

  4. bud

    All of those people should stay out of our business.

    I agree on the governor’s race but don’t agree on House and Senate races. Those offices have genuine national interest and we should be very interested in races for those offices in other states. Afterall, a win by that crazy woman Angle in Nevada will have just as detrimental affect on SC as it will on NV. Why shouldn’t we be trying to help Harry Reid win there?

    Speaking of House races, this ongoing story, discussed today in The State, caught my attention:

    “COLUMBIA, S.C. — U.S. Rep. Joe Wilson is holding a rally for supporters to challenge an opponent’s campaign claims that he traveled overseas on junkets.”

    This is really simple. Did Joe Wilson take trips to Hawaii and France as Rob Miller claims? If so, that’s a junkett. Frankly, I don’t really see any purpose in visiting Iraq to rub elbows with the troops but I’ll give him a pass on that one. But Hawaii and France? If true then Miller has the high ground on this issue.

  5. Brad

    Bud, don’t you know that Hawaii is on the front lines of the titanic war between Real Americans and that horrible Obama person? It’s the enemy’s home base. Of COURSE Joe had to go there to boost the troops’ morale…

  6. Karen McLeod

    Thank you for clearing that up Brad. Them Haywiians aren’t reel Amercans, like grizzles are. We should disenfranchise them instead.

  7. marconi

    “Maybe that’s not enough to pay for the kind of inside-the-Beltway partisan campaign that Nikki’s running (going on about Obamacare and immigration in Arizona, rather than about South Carolina), but that, too, is a good thing”


    right up until the point he LOSES.

    What will you do then, polyanna? (eschewing any help from all of THOSE PEOPLE (who you say) should stay out of our business?

    OUR BUSINESS, has become a national punchline, and will only become moreso after the first week in Nov. when we’ll be stuck with the Nimfrauda from Bamberg for the next four years.

  8. Doug Ross

    Jim Hodges got 47% of the vote against Sanford.

    Tommy Moore got 45%.

    Two weeks to go. If Sheheen doesn’t get higher than both of those guys, can we just agree that he ran a terrible campaign?

    Stop with the lame excuses about out-of-state money and stupid white men. If Sheheen doesn’t win, he needs to look in the mirror.

  9. KP

    Oh, I don’t think so Doug. Election results in this state have little to do with the quality of a candidate’s campaign and a whole lot to do with the letter following the candidate’s name. Republican strategists will tell you that it’s easy for a Democrat to get 45% of the vote here and next to impossible to get above 50.

    Watch the Lt. Governor’s race. It’ll be a walk for the Republican, even though nobody really knows either candidate.

  10. Doug Ross

    Remember – Hodges beat Beasley just pushing one issue: the lottery. Had Sheheen picked one issue like jobs or education and stuck with it, he would have had a chance.

    Instead, he chose the low road, running a negative campaign that was all about Haley and not about himself. A huge strategic mistake, in my opinion.

  11. Kathryn Fenner

    @ Doug- I disagree that Sheheen has run a negative campaign that was all about Haley! He ran a Good Ole Boy ad campaign that Brad showed us; he has been stressing his ability to actually work with the Legislature and get some things done instead of just pissing them off; he has been highlighting the importance of the Governor in attracting employers to the state–etc.
    Nothing flashy–just good ole basic fundamentals.

    What we need and what he can actually accomplish.

  12. Matt

    It’s two weeks before the election and many well-educated, civic-involved, reasonably informed people that I talk to still have no idea who Vincent Sheheen is.

    That my friends is the mark of a terribly run campaign.

  13. Phillip

    Brad, it’s all very well to be idealistic and say that the national parties should stay out of gubernatorial races, but meanwhile, in the world as it actually is, the DGA sits this one out while the RGA pours money into this race:

    …and so to say it’s good that the national party is not helping Sheheen is then merely suicidal. Noble, maybe, but suicidal nevertheless. Meanwhile, the fact that the RGA launched those ads tells me they are a little nervous about this race. To Doug’s point: surely the fact that this is generally considered a nearly-tidal-wave pro-Republican election nationally is something Sheheen is fighting against…so if he does not do much better than the last two Dem candidates I don’t think that’s necessarily a knock on his campaign.

    In fact, let’s turn Doug’s point on its head: everyone agrees there is a huge GOP wave sweeping the country in these midterms: Haley started out with a nearly 20-point lead on Sheheen, in one of the reddest states in the land. Yet the lead keeps shrinking, and shrinking, and shrinking. The trend has only been going in one direction. She hasn’t nailed this thing down by a long shot: couldn’t that be the sign, (as Matt would put it) “of a terribly run campaign”?

  14. Kathryn Fenner

    You cannot possibly be a well-educated, civic-involved, reasonably informed person and not know who Vincent Sheheen is. Sorry.

    By definition, being “reasonably informed” OR “civic-involved” requires you know the major-party candidates for the top statewide office. Matt’s people may be well-educated, but that’s it.

  15. Doug Ross


    You’re too close to Sheheen. As Matt said, the general public has no idea who he is.

    His website is stale and lacking any spark. His one non-Haley slamming TV commercial could have been for an insurance agent.

    He hasn’t articulated one specific thing he would accomplish as governor.

  16. Tina Watts

    Doug and Brad, I suggest you tune into the debate tonight. You will see just how articulate Senator Sheheen is. You will also hear a repeat of Haley’s same old talking points and dodges! If you really care more about SC than R, you will watch with an open mind and vote for what is in the best interest of our state. I can assure it is not Nikki.

  17. Mark Stewart

    Sheheen would press to make some reforms that might start to bring our state out of the 18th century. Do you seriously prefer to see someone who is only going to grandstand and bicker in futility in office?

    I remember that you said you wouldn’t vote for either. Participate in our electoral process – caste a vote for Sheheen. Make an investment in our state’s future. Or vote for Hailey if you feel that is appropriate.

    If not, its not really fair to snipe about either candidate or their campaigning if one is not going to personally make a choice and vote. And I agree; Sheheen’s campaign strategy has been as weak as Hailey’s character and aptitude.

  18. Jesse S.

    Nonsense. The electorate is fully aware of who Sheheen is.

    He supported something that happened in either Arizona or New Mexico. He supports ALL of Obama’s failed plans for big government. He is the liberal who hides in plain view. He also owns a pickup truck and drives around in the woods (for what we don’t know). Though the electorate isn’t fully aware of whether he is a Democrat or a Republican (can’t tell, his signs are a really dark blue, almost black), the electorate is certain that he isn’t a “real conservative” or he would have told us at least 900 times.

    In short the electorate is fairly certain that Sheheen is the stage name of the notorious, Lindsay Graham (he had an awful lot of makeup in those tuck adds) and we hope Alvin Greene beats him!

  19. Doug Ross


    I will vote for someone who I think will do the things South Carolina needs done. That would mean someone with Haley’s view over Sheheen’s every time. But I think Haley’s tax issues make her unworthy of my vote.

    At least I know who the candidates are. I’m an informed voter. Sheheen doesn’t deserve my vote simply because he hasn’t earned it.

    Haley has a slight chance of being able to expose the legislature for what it is. That’s a better outcome than Sheheen making deals to get minor things done. We need major change, not tine increments.

  20. Mark Stewart


    I thought that way when I voted for Hailey in 2004. But then there have been the intervening years of one personal problem after another; including her stint in the legislature.

    I understand your perspective on where you would like to see SC get to; but I do think the other candidate is more likely achieve at least part of what you would like.

    I would like to see serious tax reform to undo what was thrown on us all in 2006. I don’t give that much hope regardless of who is Governor. Second, I want to see further structural change in the way the state executive powers are delegated. Here I think Sheheen has both an interest and the ability to institute some “reform”. To me, the idea of governmental powers well checked and balanced between the legislature and the executive branch is the most conservative of issues. This state has been ill-served by the one-party system of legislative control.

    Major change ain’t ever coming to South Carolina – we’re conservative traditionalists, remember? Small steps . . .

  21. Karen McLeod

    What has Sen. Sheheen’s opinion on the Arizona illegal immigrant law have to do with Columbia, pray tell? And what’s he supposed to do about “Obamacare” whether he likes it or not? These issues are not related to the SC govenor’s job. I keep seeing all these republican ads that are purely designed to scare people about the current administration and to link local democrats to disliked political figures. I am so tired of hearing (place candidate’s name here) linked with Rep. Pelosi, as if that’s an actual issue. It is not. Health care is. Taxes are. I am tired enough of it to consider automatically voting for the candidate so linked because I figure if that’s all the other candidate can say in an ad, then that candidate has no substantive platform.

  22. Barry

    Anyone that believes Sheheen is essentially Obama in disquise isn’t fairminded, or they just aren’t someone that pays attention to reality.

    My problem with Haley (other than the obvious stuff) is that I can’t vote for someone that I don’t believe can work with folks in the General Assembly.

    I voted for Sanford and realize the mistake of voting for someone that isn’t willing to work with who runs things in South Carolina- the General Assembly.

  23. KP

    @ Doug

    Hodges beat Beasley because Beasley rode to the House of Blues on a motorcycle with a do-rag on his head, after which he had a press conference to deny that he was having an affair with his communications director, after which God spoke to him early one morning and told him to take down the flag. Gimme a break. I think a Democrat could beat Sanford this year too, if he were running.

    Sheheen is running, as Phillip says, in the reddest state there is, while a red tide is sweeping the country, against the female Indian-American darling of the national press. What in the world could he do that would get attention? If he polls 45 percent, he will have run a stellar campaign.

  24. bud

    I like Sheheen and find him to be a breath of fresh air. But if you want to win in SC it’s fair to say that Sheheen has run a horrible campaign. Democrats just can’t win here without distancing themselves to some extent from the national party. Vince has failed utterly to do that. Haley will win by 10 points in the end.

  25. Steve Gordy

    Pace Doug: It doesn’t matter whether or not anyone is “able to expose the legislature for what it is.” The same people who vote for the governor vote for the legislature. There’s so little substantive difference between (R) and (D) in SC, you’ve got to work on issue after issue, not on some grandiose reform plan that will never win passage.

  26. Doug Ross


    Hodges would never have won without the lottery. And are you saying Haley’s issues are LESS damaging than Beasley’s?

    You really think Sheheen should be considered some sort of hero for doing as well as Tommy Moore?

    If he loses, he loses it on his own with the help of a staff that ran an awful campaign.

  27. KP

    I think Haley’s issues have had less time to penetrate. I also think fewer people are willing to listen because they’ve got tea party anti-Obama fever.

  28. Doug Ross


    The same people don’t vote for the Governor as the legislature. A very small percentage of voters elected Bobby Harrell and Leatherman – yet they have far more power than the governor does.

    This is why I don’t mind having a governor acting as a roadblock. Whatever issues South Carolina has regarding its economy, its schools, its roads, etc. are the result of what the legislature has done, not what the governor (any governor) has done.

  29. Kathryn Fenner

    As long as we demand bells and whistles, dogs and ponies of our candidates, we will get Andre Bauer, Jakie Knotts and other buffoons–I am not close at all to Sheheen– I only set eyes on him for the first time a week ago at Rotary. I sent him money because Nikki Haley must not win.

    I repeat that anyone who does not know who the major party candidates are for the top statewide offices cannot possibly be well-informed.

    and, KP– nice post!

  30. Barry

    @ Doug –

    “This is why I don’t mind having a governor acting as a roadblock. Whatever issues South Carolina has regarding its economy, its schools, its roads, etc. are the result of what the legislature has done, not what the governor (any governor) has done”

    That’s the exact reason South Carolina is in a mess – and has been.

    Instead of wanting a Governor that will work with the General Assembly – and that will work to have true political capital (like Governor Campbell did) so that they can press the General Assembly and prod them along on some issues- he had rather have a roadblock to- as Governor Sanford proved – be a roadblock.

    Because anyone that has paid any attention at all knows that Governor Sanford’s roadblock (and any governor that plays that role in South Carolina) was as effective as throwing a nickel out in the street in front of a F350 truck.

  31. scout

    Barry says:

    “Anyone that believes Sheheen is essentially Obama in disquise isn’t fairminded, or they just aren’t someone that pays attention to reality. ”

    I agree but I fear that that is the problem. Are the majority of voters in SC fairminded and/or people who pay attention to reality. I don’t know.

    I’m trying hard not to be cynical. But it doesn’t always work.

  32. Doug Ross


    I wish people would stop bringing up Carroll Campbell as if he were some sort of heroic figure. He spent EIGHT years in office and when he left, whatever he may have accomplished somehow transformed back into the mess we have now. If he did anything substansial, we’d still see the effects.

    Were the schools better then? The roads? Was there some economic boom I missed?

    He may have been a great governor. But in a system that gives all the power to people like Harrell and Leatherman, it’s like being the best pinch hitter on the Yankees.

  33. Barry

    @ Doug

    Your comment is almost laughable. Anyone that drives from Spartanburg to Anderson on Interstate 85 is reminded of Carrol Campbell’s legacy numerous times.

    When he left office, his job approval from citizens of South Carolina was sky high (a record as I recall)

    In political circles, he rebuilt the Republican party in South Carolina and every Republican that has held a statewide office in this state owes him a debt for the foundation he built. If only they would have done more to work like he did.

    That’s why Republicans and Democrats mention his name specifically even today when they talk about wanting to work to get things done – especially with those in the General Assembly.

  34. The Right Indignant Kathryn Braun Fenner (Mrs. Stephen A.)

    Carroll Campbell:
    He benefited from the migration of manufacturing jobs from places where the workers were unionized and thus made a decent living to “race to the bottom” right-to-work-if-there-are-any-jobs SC. Alas, when one competes on price, one finds there is always someone there to undercut. Those jobs moved overseas, and are unlikely to come back.

    We need to roll up our sleeves and figure out how to make the tipping point where the legacy of slavery and Jim Crow can be overcome. This will cost money, which the Lords Proprietors of the Legislature are loathe to appropriate, and courage among the electorate to admit that there is something lacking in how things have been done up to now. THIS DOES NOT MEAN PRIVATE SCHOOLS!

    It means admitting, if only by implication, that you might be undereducated for today’s world, and if you are able, getting more education, and admitting that it wasn’t really “good enough for grandpa” and what may have been good enough for grandpa isn’t good enough for today.

    It means truly not leaving any child behind–not by requiring mastery of high level algebra, but by insisting on core literacies and then ensuring adequate vocational training, whether in universities, technical colleges, or trade schools. We need to have more centralized planning–not lottery scholarships–we need to do everything we can to encourage the best placement of people in educational programs that will suit our needs and their aptitudes. Offer scholarships to able students in areas of need, not wherever they can gain admission!

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