Eckstrom And Payne: Off Again
S.C. Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom’s relationship with former GOP superintendent of education candidate Kelly Payne is … wait for it … off again (just two months after their impending nuptials became public knowledge).
And the odds makers take a beating, right?
“It’s sunny and beautiful in Georgetown despite the fact our state comptroller left me stranded 3 hours from home,” Payne wrote on her Facebook page last weekend. “Apparently there will be no wedding. Divorced less than 1 week and he already bailed. Unbelievable.”
Actually what’s unbelievable is that Payne and Eckstrom made it more than three months without splitting up.
Eckstrom – whose creepy texts and emails to Payne became the stuff of S.C. political legend – was recently taken to the cleaners by his ex-wife. In fact their divorce was finalized last week, and Eckstrom reportedly took a major bath.
In one of the emails, Eckstrom referred to himself as a “fine specimen.” In another, he offered himself up to be Payne’s sexual “guinea pig.”
After a high-profile split during the 2010 GOP primary season, Payne and Eckstrom got back together prior to the general election. Of course within weeks of reuniting they became embroiled in yet another public soap opera – this one ending with Payne filing a police report against Eckstrom.
Eckstrom’s combative relationship with Payne was the subject of a Democratic TV ad during the 2010 campaign … as was a 1997 sexual harassment case that the Comptroller settled with $57,000 of your tax dollars (here are a pair of pictures of the woman that Eckstrom allegedly harassed, in case you’re interested).
In addition to his affair with Payne, multiple sources tell FITS that the 64-year-old politician has bragged about having affairs with a statewide elected official in Oklahoma as well as one of his subordinates in the Comptroller General’s office.
Eckstrom reportedly spent time with the Oklahoma official during a conference that he attended last month in Oklahoma City – which may have been the impetus for this latest breakup.
Despite all of this drama, Eckstrom was not only reelected Comptroller in November 2010 – but was placed in command of the South Carolina State Guard last spring.
How’s he doing when it comes to watching out for taxpayers? Lately not so good …