To the traveling GOP circus: We're not all dead yet

dlauderdale@islandpacket.comJanuary 12, 2012 

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They're back.

Presidential candidates have descended on us like sand gnats in the marsh. South Carolina has the South's first GOP presidential preference primary, and it has given us a new slogan for our license tags: "Every four years, we matter."

The six contenders arrive as our state elections director calls for an investigation of a report that 957 dead people have voted in South Carolina.

But that's chicken feed compared to the skullduggery the candidates bring with them. Until the vote on Jan. 21, all television ads will tell us why we can't trust a single one of them. It makes you wonder, "If that's what they say about each other, what will the Democrats say?"

"The savaging has just begun," oozed a media soldier here to explain South Carolina to the nation.

Journalists "from off" amuse themselves by seeking our oddities, which is not a big challenge. The New York Times had a story this week with the dateline: "North, S.C."

North is here in the Lowcountry, of course, not to be confused with Due West, S.C., in the Upstate. The reporter found reality in North, "at the Edisto Grocery, where all day long people with not enough work come to eat $2.25 fried bologna sandwiches, pick up some horse feed and complain about the price of diesel."

When times are tough, I fry my own bologna sandwiches.

But enough about my economic platform. Here are more practical tips on how to enjoy the Lowcountry for our distinguished guests:

To Mitt Romney, who said he took a long trip with the family dog in a carrier strapped to the roof, don't try that around here with a deer dog. If it were to fly off and, heaven forbid, die, you'd find yourself on Death Row faster than you could say, "Kennel up, Bo."

To Jon M. Huntsman, make yourself at home. The Lowcountry has a history of religious diversity and tolerance, with a strong presence of Mormons.

To Ron Paul, who says his support has swollen beyond a "tireless irate minority," you've come to the right place. Look at our letters to the editor. These people are tireless and irate. And they're not in the minority.

To Rick Perry, don't worry. We're an older population. We can't remember why we went into the kitchen, much less our least favorite federal agencies.

To Rick Santorum, perk up your wardrobe while you're here. Will somebody please get him a Salty Dog sweater vest?

To Newt Gingrich, whip out your plastic. We've got a Saks Fifth Avenue OFF 5TH at Tanger Outlet Center I in Bluffton.

To each of you, thank you for bringing the show to Beaufort County. If nothing else, it proves we're not dead yet. Maybe.

Follow columnist David Lauderdale at

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