COLUMBIA, S.C. A day after an unemployed veteran charged with a felony shocked South Carolina's Democratic establishment by winning the U.S. Senate primary, party officials were still scratching their heads: What happened?
Alvin Greene, 32, didn't raise any money. He didn't have a website. And his opponent was a relatively better-known former legislator, Vic Rawl, who was already preparing for the general election.
Greene was considered such a long shot that his opponent and media didn't even bother to check his background. If they had, they would have discovered he faces a felony obscenity charge after an alleged encounter with a college student last fall.
After The Associated Press reported Greene's charge Wednesday, the leader of the state Democratic party said she asked Greene to withdraw from the race.
"I did not do this lightly, as I believe strongly that the Democratic voters of this state have the right to select our nominee," Fowler said. "But this new information about Mr. Greene ... would certainly have affected the decisions of many of those voters."
South Carolina state law prohibits convicted felons from serving in state office. Felons can serve in federal office, although the U.S. House or Senate could vote to expel any member deemed unfit to serve.
Rawl said he didn't know about Greene's arrest until reading media reports about it.
"It's an absolute surprise," Rawl said. "I can't really make any comments, because I don't know what's going on."
But Greene said that he will not step aside.
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William Jefferson (D-La.) 2007
James Traficant, (D-Ohio) 2001
Mel Reynolds (D-Ill.) 1995
Walter R. Tucker III (D-Calif.) 1995
Dan Rostenkowski (D-Ill.) 1994
Carroll Hubbard (D-Ky) 1994
Larry Smith (D-Fla) 1993
Albert Bustamante (D-Texas) 1993
Nick Mavroules (D-Mass.) 1992
Floyd H. Flake (D-N.Y.) 1991
Robert Garcia (D-N.Y.) 11-21-88
John W. Jenrette Jr. (D-S.C.) 7/15/80
Raymond R. Lederer (D-S.C.) 5/18/80
Claude Leach (D-La.) 7/20/79
The list is to long to continue.
Charles RangelTimothy Geithner
William Jefferson Clinton
and again-to many to list.
Alvin Greene-If Elected, should feel right at home.