Dems see red with Greene

DEMS SEE RED WITH GREENE…. In South Carolina, Democrats have had very low expectations in taking on Sen. Jim DeMint (R) this year. All available evidence suggests the right-wing incumbent would cruise to another term. But Dems nevertheless had a credible challenger, four-term state lawmaker Vic Rawl, who would enjoy the party’s support.

It came as something of a shock, then, when Rawl was trounced in this week’s primary by Alvin Greene, an unemployed, 32-year-old novice who lives with his parents and didn’t campaign.

Greene is now looking like an even worse candidate than originally feared.

Alvin Greene, the surprise South Carolina Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate, was kicked out of the Army last year and is facing a pending felony charge, according to court records obtained by ABC News.

Greene, who has yet to enter a plea or be indicted, was arrested in November and charged with “disseminating, procuring or promoting obscenity” in Richland County, S.C., and faces up to five years in prison if convicted.

The U.S. Senate candidate was captured on video surveillance Nov. 4 trying to show “obscene photographs from a website” to a female victim on the University of South Carolina campus and go to her room without her consent, according to the affidavit.

Asked about the charges, Greene said, “I have no comment about that, I have no comment.” Asked about being involuntarily forced out of the Army, he added it was because “things just weren’t working … it was hard to say.”

As for how, exactly, Greene managed to win the primary without trying — no website, no staff, no money, no events — there’s no clear explanation from anyone. There are, however, rumors about Greene’s candidacy being a Republican trick intended to embarrass Democrats.

The state party is urging Greene to graciously step aside, but the primary winner, at this point, has refused.

DeMint was practically a lock anyway, but a fiasco like this is just embarrassing.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.