The Lt. Governor’s race is filled with weak candidates. The office itself is not very powerful. The best thing the people of South Carolina can hope for is to elect someone to the post who understands issues and uses the office to promote important issues and South Carolina. As things stand in the campaign today, Florence County Council member Ken Ard and his consultant sidekick, known to politicos as “Sneaky Spanky” claim to be the front runner. Bill Connor served the nation well in the military, and despite Larry “The Lounge Lizard” Richter’s criticism of Connor, Connor is honorable to run for Lt. Governor. The Lounge Lizard is in the race himself, but he brings out rumors and fears of being another Thomas Ravenel.
That leaves us with Eleanor Kitzman. Kitzman knows the insurance industry better than anyone in South Carolina politics. With Obama’s health insurance bill so prominent in politics, Kitzman’s knowledge and experience is refreshing. Kitzman not only headed up the South Carolina Department of Insurance, but she started her own insurance company. Kitzman knows the issues of insurance and all others. In interviews and on her campaign website, Kitzman offers intelligence and positions on issues that seem grounded on good sense.
But, alas there is politics. Sneaky Spanky and his ilk around Ard are good at what they do. Larry the Lounge Lizard has the Shealy machine and money behind him. Connor, honorable as he is, still has paid politicos from the old Sanford machine behind him. Those candidates have the political machines behind them and in a race as weak as this year’s Lt. Governor’s race that will probably be enough for one of them to win.
That is unfortunate for the people of South Carolina. Twenty minutes with Eleanor Kitzman shows that she is smarter than the gentlemen she is running against. South Carolina needs someone like Kitzman in the office of Lt. Governor. Kitzman has the sense and the experience to lead. Kitzman has the knowledge that the other candidates lack. But, in this state, that might not be enough.
In a perfect world, South Carolina would elect Eleanor Kitzman Lt. Governor and then support her for Governor four years from now. She makes sense. But, again, this is South Carolina, and making sense and being smart probably insures someone as smart as Kitzman does not even make the Republican primary runoff. Sneaky Spanky and Mr. Shealy demand such.