Former S.C. Lt. Gov. Andre Bauer – one of several “Republicans” running for the newly-drawn S.C. seventh congressional district – has endorsed the presidential bid of former U.S. Speaker Newt Gingrich.
What’s that worth? Not much, honestly. In fact we’re honestly not even sure why we’re putting this “above the fold” other than it’s an incredibly slow news day.
Bauer finished dead last in last summer’s Republican gubernatorial primary – drawing just 12.5 percent of the GOP vote.
Bauer’s endorsement comes as Gingrich’s campaign is enjoying a surge of support in South Carolina (which thoroughly irritates our founding editor, who detests Gingrich immensely). In fact, a poll released last week shows the rotund “Republican in Name Only” enjoying a commanding lead over former Godfathers Pizza CEO Herman Cain and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney among likely “First in the South” Republican voters.
Bauer was dogged by allegations of corruption during his tenure as Lt. Governor – as well as his infamous lead foot.
In 2006, Bauer was stopped twice for speeding (including one incident in which he was clocked traveling at over 100 miles per hour) but was let go without a ticket after identifying himself as “SC-2.” In another incident, a police officer was forced to “draw down” on Bauer in response to his aggressive behavior following a traffic stop.
Bauer was nearly defeated in the 200g GOP primary by Mike Campbell – son of former S.C. Gov. Carroll A. Campbell Jr. – but his involvement in a plane crash just days before the election spawned a wave of sympathy.
While campaigning for governor, Bauer sparked controversy by comparing poor children to stray animals. He was also accused by eventual GOP nominee Nikki Haley of orchestrating the publication of information related to Haley’s multiple extramarital affairs – although Bauer later passed a polygraph examination in which he denied Haley’s allegation.
Bauer endorsed former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s presidential campaign in 2008, in case you’re keeping score at home.
2012 Watch: Following The “First in the South” Endorsements