"That's how Thomas Ravenel rolls."

That's Thomas Ravenel on his favorite subject — Thomas Ravenel. He was answering reporters' questions about his dubious entrance into the State Treasurer's race and the potential for a run-off. Source: The State

Election '06 Update ·
Tropical storm Alberto put a damper on the Lowcountry turnout in the June 13 election primary. According to Marilyn Bowers, director of the Charleston County Election Commission, of the 171,117 eligible voters, only 24,277 — a disappointing 14 percent — turned out. Politicos and demographic statisticians are already busy working out how the rain affected the outcomes of the races, but the race isn't over yet for many of the candidates who are preparing for the June 27 run-offs.

Yet to be resolved is the Republican candidate for Lt. Gov. The potential candidates — South Carolina's very own tortoise and hare, Mike Campbell and Andre Bauer — will meet again to determine which nominee will face Democratic candidate Robert Barber.

The Republican race for Sen. John Graham Altman III's statehouse seat was also a tight finish. Candidates Greg Hart and Suzanne Piper will face off again — a meeting Altman himself had hoped for. Altman is not happy with Hart, who vowed to contest Altman's seat even prior to Atlman's retirement — to many, not the actions of a Southern gentleman. As a result, Altman offered his endorsement to Piper immediately after the run-off was announced. Leon Stavrinakis is the Democratic challenger.

Randy Maatta and Ben Frasier, Democratic candidates for the U. S. House of Representatives, will meet to determine who will face incumbent Henry Brown. Considered the frontrunner, Maatta barely made the run-off, partially due to what many have called a lackluster campaign. Frasier, in his 10th run for public office, may finally win — by war of attrition — the chance to go to the big game.

Thomas Ravenel and Greg Ryberg qualified for a run-off over the Republican candidacy for Treasurer. Insiders were shocked at Ravenel's strong performance in the primary. Garnering 48 percent of the vote — just squeaking under the 50 percent plus one vote requirement that would have precluded the run-off — Ravenel is now commanding attention. Name recognition, and an excellent set of commercials released in the last two weeks of the campaign, put Ravenel on top of the treasurer heap. Despite raising nearly $3 million, Ryberg realized that he would have significant ground to cover to present a challenge to the charismatic Ravenel. Ryberg pulled out of the run-off the day after the primary, saying, "I got into this because I understand numbers. I am getting out because I understand numbers."

Third place finisher Rick Quinn had the option of throwing his name in the run-off ring but chose to bow out gracefully. Fourth runner-up Jeff Willis has decided to keep his name in the running, if only to keep his pet issues — free homes for veterans and prevention of identity theft — in the news. If the run-off outcome is anything like the primary, Ravenel will face incumbent Grady Patterson in November. —Elle Lien

"God will send His whirlwind of correction upon a state that professes to believe in Him, and had an opportunity to ban state-protected child-killing, but refused."

Columbia Christians for Life posits that if hurricanes hit South Carolina, it will be because legislators have not passed the Right to Life Act. Similar religious groups using similar logic argue that American soldiers are dying in Iraq because we are a nation that allows homosexuality. Source: Recent e-mail newsletter from Columbia Christians for Life


That's the number of people who were injured on June 12 when a historic tour carriage horse was spooked by construction noise at the corner of St. Philip and George streets. Three of the injured passengers were treated at the scene and three were taken to nearby MUSC. Source: Post and Courier


That's the rise in the median Charleston home price over the last year — from $187,303 to $212,000. Source:Charleston Trident Association of Realtors

$1 million

That's the minimum the College of Charleston will shell out for the last four years of over hyped basketball coach Tom Herrion's contract. Coastal Carolina coach Buzz Pearson has been tapped — unofficially — to take his place. Source: College of Charleston

The Glow State ·
The nation's first Mixed Oxide (MOX) fuel production plant, which would convert surplus weapons grade plutonium into commercial fuel, is slated for the Savannah River Site but may be experiencing meltdown before construction begins. Ohio Rep. David Hobson got the project's entire $289.5 million in federal funding cut for fiscal 2007 in a House subcommittee vote. His press secretary told the Augusta Chronicle that he did so because Russia will not fund their end of the nuclear disarmament agreement. The companies constructing the plant said they cannot proceed without the cash. The matter remains unstable, however. The Senate has already given the funding a glowing green light, so the money could be reinstated when both houses reconcile their budget differences. Local lefty group Charleston Peace is asking MOX opponents to thank Hobson. The group contends that shipping the planned 34 metric tons of plutonium to South Carolina for processing will make the highly radioactive material more susceptible to terrorist attacks and accidents.

In related nuclear news, the Catawba nuclear power plant, where all the MOX fuel that came through Charleston Harbor last year went, had to be shut down after a transformer failed a couple of weeks ago. The Associated Press reported the transformer failed because it had not been recalibrated in decades to deal with the increase in energy output. No one was mutated. —Benjamin Schlau

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