There are plenty of red-hot primary races facing a vote tomorrow, but none so fascinating in a "watching-a-car-accident" kind of way than the GOP runoff to determine who will be the candidate to replace infamous philanderer/hiker Mark Sanford, who will soon have time to stroll the Appalachian trail with his Argentine soul mate.
The race to replace Sanford on the ticket is reading like a script for a daytime drama, or a new episode of "Desperate Housewives," as allegations of sexual harassment, infidelity, racism, swirl around the front runner: 38-year-old Nikki Haley, a state representative often compared to Sarah Palin for her "physical attractiveness" and pit-bull-like tenacity. Not surprisingly, Palin has endorsed Haley in the primary.
Haley faces three GOP challengers tomorrow, and a host of slurs and allegations have emerged about her past that have thus far only solidified her base, voters who see her as a "fighter" against the dirty political ads that claim she was twice unfaithful to her husband and subtly attack her Indian ethnicity. State senator Jake Knotts went so far as to call her a "raghead" on a local radio show, adding that, "We already got one raghead in the White House. We don't need another in the governor's mansion." Kinda makes you nostalgic for the quieter racism of ol' Strom, doesn't it?
Twelve states will hold primaries tomorrow, and while none will be as colorful as South Carolina's, many of them promise to be nail biters and may turn out to be referendums on the long-accepted power of incumbency versus the newfound political power of the Teabaggers. Not that there won't be any excitement outside SC . . . in Iowa's GOP gubernatorial primary showdown, Crazy Man Chuck Norris has recently burst on the scene to endorse Teabagger Favorite Bob Vander Plaats over traditional conservative Terry Branstad, who holds the record of Iowa's longest-serving governor (1983-1999).
Democratic Sen. Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas could become the third sitting senator to be forced out of office (after Democrat (?) Arlen Specter and Republican Bill Bennett) this year as she faces off against Lt. Gov. Bill Halter in a runoff tomorrow. Big Dawg Bill Clinton has been called into action for some last-minute rallying behind Lincoln, which is ironic as labor unions have endorsed Halter because Lincoln voted against the public option of Obama's health care reform plan, which Clinton always supported and was the cornerstone of his controversial proposal waaaaaay back in 1992. Isn't is a fun game, this political dance? You never know which side you're on until the bitter end. Often not even then.
How weak are the incumbents this year? Not even milquetoast, blander-than-beige Harry Reid is presumed safe in Nevada. Two GOP challengers are vying tomorrow to decide which will take on the Senate Majority leader in November, and that primary is turning into Theater Of The Bizarre. Former head of the Nevada GOP Sue Lowden suggested during a rural town hall meeting that residents could barter for health care services with their chickens, while Teabagger favorite Sharron Angle favors a Scientology-based drug treatment plan for prisoners that includes massages. No word on whether or not Tom Cruise would personally provide the oil.
Nevada's gubernatorial race is only slightly less provocative, with incumbent Jim Gibbons' defense of a sexual threat against a cocktail waitress by explaining that he has not had sex since 1995.Gibbons split with his wife in a nasty divorce in 2009.
But it is the race to win the Democratic nomination in California's 36th district that is the nearest and dearest to our hearts, as dedicated liberal Democrat Marcy Winograd tries to upset entrenched corporate favorite and Blue Dog Jane Harman to bring a more progressive representation of the district to Washington, DC.
No matter your candidate or party affiliation, tomorrow's primaries offer fun for everyone!