Friday, February 24, 2006

Romney tours S.C.; makes "Yankee" comment

Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney made presidential political stops Thursday in Charleston and Columbia.

At The Citadel in Charleston, he made a tongue-in-cheek comment that may come back to haunt him. According to the Associated Press:

"After fielding serious questions from cadets, one asked about the former Red Sox centerfielder Johnny Damon signing with the Yankees.

"Romney said that proved he had "something in common with you people here in the South. We both hate Yankees," he said."

Also see: The Post and Courier

In another story in The State newspaper of Columbia, Romney courted evangelicals. In the past, he said he supported the substance of a woman's right to choose, but his stance changed after studying stem-cell research, he told reporter Lee Bandy:

"Romney, a Mormon, said what changed him was the focus on stem cell research.

“'I studied it long and hard. And when I came out of the process, I said I would not support embryo farming or embryo cloning for research or anything.'

“'I’m pro-life,' he declared. 'So, the issue is settled.'”

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Sanford says he's uncommitted

S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford, touted earlier as a possible presidential candidate for the GOP, said in an interview today with The Washington Post that he wasn't committed to any candidate.

According to The Fix, the Post's politics blog,
"That news may come as something of a surprise to supporters of Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), whom Sanford backed in South Carolina's 2000 primary. But the Palmetto State governor insists his decision (or, more accurately, indecision) is not meant as a "slap" at McCain but rather part of a concerted effort on his part to find the candidate in the field truly dedicated to fiscal conservatism.

"'I am not committed at this point,' said Sanford, who acknowledged that "a long list of characters" considering the 2008 race have reached out to him. 'I am really going to look very hard at somebody who will espouse that notion of fiscal discipline and financial stewardship. That would be at the top of my list.'"

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Biden to speak in Spartanburg

U.S. Sen. Joe Biden, a potential contender for the Democratic nomination for president in 2008, is scheduled to speak at the Spartanburg County Democratic Convention on March 20th.

According to the Spartanburg Herald Journal:

"What Joe Biden is going to talk about is not Joe Biden for president. He's going to talk about Democrats winning locally," Spartanburg County Democratic Chairwoman Liz Patterson said.

Biden is the first Democrat with possible presidential aspirations to visit the Upstate this year, though others, including former vice presidential candidate John Edwards, have made trips to South Carolina.

More: The Greenville News

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Huckabee visits Spartanburg

Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee was the latest GOP presidential candidate to visit the Upstate Monday during a speech to the Spartanburg GOP.

According to The State:

In his address, Huckabee hit on several domestic hot-button issues, including an amendment to ban gay marriage that South Carolina voters will consider this November.

Encouraging voters to support the amendment, Huckabee said ballot questions like this are a major reason elections are still important in America, despite their cost and time.

More stories:

Sunday, February 19, 2006

Romney speaks in Greenville

Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney spoke Saturday to Greenville Republicans and urged fiscal restraint, according to the Greenville News:
Stepping up his soundings as a potential 2008 presidential candidate, Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney told Greenville Republicans on Saturday that the federal government, without naming President Bush, is spending too much money and has "underappreciated" the terror threat's scope.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

2/8: SC is the place for hopefuls to visit

Two years before the opening primaries of the 2008 presidential campaigns, candidates are lining up support in places like South Carolina, according to a story in today's USA Today:
Last month, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist of Tennessee hired Republican communication expert Jim Dyke, based in South Carolina, site of an early primary. Another Republican, New York Gov. George Pataki, has consultants on the payroll in Iowa and New Hampshire — the lead-off states in the nomination process.
Also in the story:

This time, South Carolina Republican Party Chairman Katon Dawson laughs when asked who's been to visit. "It's not who's been here," he says. "The only one who hasn't is Gov. Pataki."

Nine GOP prospects came to Dawson's state 16 times between the last election and Jan. 31 of this year, according to records kept by The Hotline, an online political newsletter. Five Democrats made six visits there over the same period. Iowa and New Hampshire saw even more traffic. Each state has hosted more than three dozen visits by possible candidates.

Friday, February 03, 2006

2/3, editorial: Palmetto State primaries crucial

From the Washington Examiner:

"Two years from now, Democratic and Republican presidential aspirants will be scrambling across South Carolina attempting to win their party's 2008 presidential nomination. Virginians could have a special interest in the Palmetto State's early primary, which may be the proving ground - or graveyard - for two of the state's former governors, Republican George Allen and Democrat Mark Warner. "