Wednesday, April 03, 2013


I don't know if Mark Sanford is too much of a laughingstock to beat Elizabeth Colbert Busch in that South Carolina special congressional election -- I agree with Ed Kilgore that he'd do a hell of a lot better if he could somehow get ex-wife Jenny Sanford to endorse his campaign, and that he'd do better if sightings of fiancee/"soul mate" Maria Belen Chapur were kept to a minimum.

But a moment on Morning Joe today showed that someone on Sanford's side -- Sanford himself? Sanford strategists? Joe Scarborough? -- knows how to motivate the GOP base in what will probably be a low-turnout election:
Former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford (R) on Monday admitted that he had eaten two baby pigs after using them as props to make a point about wasteful government spending.

After the Republican-controlled South Carolina legislature quickly overrode two of his budget vetoes in 2004, Sanford had walked into the Statehouse carrying two pigs -- named "Pork" and "Barrel" -- under his arms....

During a Wednesday morning MSNBC appearance to discuss his Republican primary win in South Carolina's First Congressional District, host Mika Brzezinski asked Sanford for an update on his animal pals.

"Unfortunately, they were barbecued," Sanford revealed. "They were great little guys. I hate to let you in on it." ...
Wow. That hits two wingnut pleasure centers simultaneously. Wingnuts hate government spending (they think it's 100% pork, although they will allow for the necessity of the military and their own Medicare Hoverounds) and they think eating meat is a great way of sticking it to The Man -- The Man being PETA (which they think is supported by all liberals), along with Michelle Obama and Mike Bloomberg and anyone else they think is trying to prevent them from eating whatever the hell they want whenever they want (even if it makes them too fat to get around without the use of, um, Medicare Hoverounds).

Sanford's original pig protest must have been pure catnip to wingers. (Remember how the earliest proto-tea party protests were pig-obsessed? Remember denunciations of the stimulus as "porkulus"?) So this may not be enough to neutralize Sanford's undiminished creepiness, but dropping it into the interview was a slick move.

Joe Scarborough himself sure seems to be rooting for Sanford. He hit yet another pleasure center while talking about the pig protest:

JOE SCARBOROUGH: By the way -- and this is why I've always loved Mark so much -- the punch line for me ideologically is: that was a Republican state house he went into, and it was Republicans that were spending too much money in the Senate and the House, and it was Republicans who were enraged that Mark would actually say, "I expect the same from Republican legislators as I expect from Democratic legislators."
Genius. The winger base loves that kind of talk. Whenever you see any poll showing that even Republicans don't like the Republican Party, remember that the reason they don't like their own party is that they think it's not right-wing enough.

And, of course, neither the meat-eating nor the denunciation of spending is going to alienate any moderate voters in Sanford's district. Just the opposite, I imagine.

So this Scarborough bit was a political masterpiece. It may be in a losing cause, but in isolation, it was brilliant. I wonder who dreamed it up.


Victor said...

Oh, FSM, this, THIS, is why I no longer watch the circle wank-fest that is Cup O' Schmoe.

It's like a FOX sundae, only without the overwhelming number of nuts on top of the same ice-cream.

But, what does anyone expect of Schmoe, who had a young female intern die mysteriously in his campaign office, while he was leaving, or had just left, his first (earlier?) wife.
Even Newt just left his ex-girlfriends alive - at least as far was we know.

BH said...

Polls be damned, this is S. Carolina. There's not a chance in hell that Sanford will lose - at worst he may come in under 55%.

Jimmi the Grey said...

So lemme see if I grok this. Sanford used piglets as a prop representing excessive spending then consumed them when they matured. Typical, complain about something and then benefit from it.