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Wednesday, June 9, 2010

S.C. Dem winner faces felony charge

South Carolina Democrats got a bit of a surprise Tuesday night when a little-known candidate won the party’s Senate nomination.

But they got an even bigger surprise Wednesday after a report that their newly-minted nominee was facing a pending felony charge of showing a college student obscene photos.

Alvin Greene, a 32-year-old unemployed African-American Army veteran, raised no money in his short primary campaign against Charleston City Councilman Vic Rawl for the chance to face Republican Sen. Jim DeMint in November.

Greene had no campaign website, no staff and paid the $10,400 filing fee with his own money, while Rawl raised more than $230,000 and campaigned across the state. Nonetheless, Greene posted a 59 percent to 41 percent win over Rawl.

On Wednesday afternoon, The Associated Press reported that Greene had been arrested in November for showing a University of South Carolina female student lewd photos and talked about going to her dorm room. Greene posted bond but hasn’t yet entered a plea or been indicted.

Greene refused to comment on the charges to POLITICO.

Shortly before news of the pending charges broke, Greene did discuss his win in a brief phone interview. Admitting he was “a little surprised” by his win, he said he “knew I earned it.”

Greene said he fueled his campaign and paid his filing fee “100 percent out of my own pocket.”

“I kept it simple, nothing fancy, just old-fashioned stuff,” he said of his campaign strategy, which he described as reaching out to “friends and friends of friends.”

With the state’s unemployment rate at 11.6 percent in April, Greene suggested that because he too had trouble finding a job, voters identified with his candidacy.

Among key issues he said he would focus on in the general election were working toward a foreign policy that united North Korea and South Korea, which he began to back when he was stationed in South Korea for a year with the U.S. Army

“I’d like to see that done peacefully, like was done in Germany,” said Greene.

Describing himself as a moderate Democrat, he said his other key issues would be jobs and he criticized DeMint for backing repeal of recently passed health care reform legislation, which he supports.

But Greene conceded that in a general election he would need more help than his barebones primary in a very uphill campaign against a popular Republican incumbent in a solidly conservative state.

“I need help and funds from the state Democratic Party because I’m running out of my pocket 100 percent,” Greene said.

The SCDP and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee had not yet responded to a request for comment on Greene’s request for help or his pending felony charges.

Greene also said he’d want to debate DeMint, but until then he said he’d continue to reach out to friends and neighbors.

“Right now I’m pretty much a one-man wrecking crew,” Greene said (Source)

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