Earlier this week FITS broke wide open a major spat within the crowded race for the South Carolina first congressional district. Now the drama has expanded to include the Palmetto State’s largest newspaper (and the paper of record in the first district race) – The Charleston (S.C.) Post and Courier.
For those of you who missed the first installment of this Real Housewives of Charleston drama, Teddy Turner – son of liberal media mogul Ted Turner – was accused by one of his campaign rivals of impregnating “his nanny” during his second marriage.
Turner – who is now married to the woman in question – issued a statement saying he was “never caught cheating” and that the nanny in question (a.k.a. his third wife, Blair Turner) “worked for another family.” Meanwhile a spokesman for Turner accused his second wife – Charleston, S.C. attorney Leslie Turner – of infidelity, alleging the couple’s divorce records had been sealed at her request.
Adding another layer of intrigue to the mix, Turner’s campaign pointed an accusatory finger at another candidate in the race, former S.C. Sen. John Kuhn.
“John Kuhn sure is working hard to spread that rumor,” Turner campaign manager Michael Smith told us.
Why is any of this relevant? It isn’t … except for the fact Turner is running television ads touting himself as a “husband” and “father” and supporter of “traditional marriage” as part of his efforts to reach out to socially conservative voters. He also recently sent out a mailing referring to himself as a “family man,” and noting that “Teddy, his wife Blair, and their children” live in Mount Pleasant, S.C.
Anyway, in an effort to separate truth from fiction (and substance from smear), FITS has tapped our lengthy rolodex of Charleston, S.C. housewives.
What did we uncover?
According to our sources, both Turner and his accuser are half-correct. While Turner may not have been “caught” cheating on his second wife, he did cheat on her. And while he may not have impregnated his own family’s nanny, he did impregnate the nanny of another Charleston family.
Which family? The one belonging to Pierre Manigault, owner of the Post and Courier.
Obviously Manigault is no stranger to controversy. In fact he was at the center of a major scandal last fall involving his paper’s decision to lay off of powerful S.C. Speaker of the House Bobby Harrell – who is currently the subject of a criminal investigation into a host of ethics allegations. In fact Manigault was reportedly approached by Harrell lackey Chip Limehouse – who is also a candidate for the first district – and warned to back off of Harrell or risk losing the paper’s sales tax exemption.
How will Manigault’s paper address the soap opera involving Turner?
We don’t suspect it will, and in the event it does – we don’t suspect the paper will mention the proximity of its owner to the protagonists in this drama.
How will Turner’s “Nannygate” impact the first district race? We’re not sure. The scandal has yet to be picked up by the legacy press, but we’re told several reporters at other “mainstream” outlets in the district are investigating. In the meantime, though, tongues are wagging all across the Holy City.
Again … we don’t care if candidates screw around on their wives (with their nannies … or their butlers). We do care if they hold themselves out to be something they aren’t, which seems to be something of an epidemic in this GOP field.