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SC Politics

Joe Cunningham Is Blaming His Ex-Wife For Losing The 2022 Election

Ex-congressman files contempt action against Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham over 2022 tweets …

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There are a lot of small men in South Carolina politics. And I don’t necessarily mean men of diminutive stature. Or unimposing girth. Or generally insignificant men. I mean small men. Men who sink beneath their stations, slip below their circumstances, shirk their duties as fathers, shift blame onto others, refuse to accept responsibility for their own failures … and who generally fail to do the decent thing by those around them.

Former U.S. congressman and (spectacularly) failed Democratic gubernatorial nominee Joe Cunningham is a small man in this broader sense of the word.

How do I know this? Because I was minding my business last Thursday when I was served with paperwork in connection with South Carolina family court case 2021-DR-10-0886.

What is this case?

Unfortunately, those who attempt to access the online court docket in Charleston County – where this action was filed – will find none of its public records available for review I know this because my lawyers tried to pull these public case files, but like so many actions involving prominent Palmetto State politicians – they have been sealed.

So … what’s the deal?

(Click to View)

Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham and Joe Cunningham. (Twitter)

According to an email from Lexington, S.C. attorney Ashby Jones – who represents Cunningham’s ex-wife, Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham – a contempt action has been filed by the former congressman alleging his ex-wife “interfered with and impacted Mr. Cunningham’s profession, occupation or employment” during the 2022 gubernatorial election.

Wait … wait? Cunningham’s occupation?

Longtime readers of this news outlet will recall occupational identification is something of a moving target for this former “ocean engineer,” but it certainly sounds as though Cunningham – who currently fancies himself as a political consultant – is admitting he is a career politician.

Anyway, citing the court-ordered seal on this case, Jones declined to provide me or my attorneys with a copy of Cunningham’s lawsuit against his ex-wife.

“The file is sealed,” she wrote in the email. “I am not able to provide a copy.”

All I know is the subpoena commands me to appear in Charleston County court on June 20, 2023 at 2:00 p.m. EDT. It further commands me to appear for a deposition five days earlier – on June 15, 2023 at 5:00 p.m. EDT – at Jones’ law offices.

Again, though … what is the deal with this case?

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Apparently, Joe Cunningham’s lawsuit is all about (gasp!) tweets made by Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham which were (gasp!) retweeted by this news outlet’s official Twitter page during the 2022 election.

The horror, right?

Who knew a grown man’s itching inferiority complex, unhealthy obsession with his ex-wife, narcissistic gaslighting addiction and desperate need to scapegoat his own embarrassing political impotence was something that needed to be addressed via South Carolina’s clogged family court system?

Such is Cunningham’s mile-wide sense of entitlement, it would appear …

Alas, it now falls to Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham’s attorneys to prove this frat-tastic man-child never had a snowball’s chance in Hades of becoming governor of South Carolina.

“We are seeking information concerning the political climate for Cunningham’s race both before and after the tweets,” Jones wrote. “We are also seeking concrete information concerning the amount of people who viewed your retweets and/ or posts, as the allegation is that Ms. Cunningham’s allegedly improper comments were amplified through the retweets. Your retweets are imbedded in the body of Mr. Cunningham’s contempt complaint and he references FITSNews by name.”

Does he, now?

(Click to View)

Joe Cunningham (Travis Bell Photography)

To be clear: Cunningham did not lose the 2022 election because of anything his ex-wife said or did. Or anything this news outlet said or did to amplify her statements. Hell, I was much harder on his “Republican” rival.

He lost the 2022 election before it even began because his über woke, anti-free market party has been careening into irrelevance in the Palmetto State for decades.

Democrats have not won a statewide election in the Palmetto State since 2006 (17 years). They have not won a governor’s race or a U.S. Senate race since 1998 (25 years). All eight statewide elected offices are currently occupied by GOP politicians, as are six of seven congressional districts. “Republicans” also enjoy supermajorities in both chambers of the S.C. General Assembly, for whatever that has been worth.

As if such odds were not sufficiently formidable, Cunningham thought it wise to alienate black voters during a contentious Democratic primary (and then re-alienate them when he chose a white running mate during the general election). Beyond pissing off the black vote, Cunningham also angered old people … the state’s largest, most consistently motivated voting bloc.

In particular, he pissed off one incredibly powerful elderly black man.

But hey … let’s forget about all that, right? Let’s instead allow Cunningham to sit back and throw Kindergarten shade at the mother of the child he now uses as his political prop. Oh, and that reminds me – according to the subpoena I received one of those “allegedly improper” tweets consisted of Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham politely asking her then-estranged husband to stop using their child as campaign propaganda without her permission.

(Click to View)

Tweet by Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham on June 4, 2022 cited in her ex-husband Joe Cunningham’s contempt action against her. (S.C. Ninth Judicial Circuit)

Yeah … it takes a special kind of “smallness” to sue a woman for trying to protect her child.

In fairness, as one of my Democratic friends recently noted I have never particularly liked Joe Cunningham. Earlier this year, as he was touting his purported affiliation with the national No Labels movement, I derided him as “another empty suit with his hand out, trying to bank on a name that frankly never was all that formidable in the first place.”

Turns out that was far too charitable an assessment of this “man.”

“Success has a million fathers,” the old expression goes. “But failure is an orphan.”

That’s how it is supposed to be, anyway. Unfortunately for Amanda Bonfiglio Cunningham, her ex-husband seems incapable of losing her – and his political career – with so much as a solitary strand of his dignity intact.

Or his manhood …

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THE SUBPOENA …

(Via: S.C. Ninth Judicial Circuit)

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR ...

Will Folks (Brett Flashnick)

Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children.

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22 comments

Nanker Phelge May 29, 2023 at 11:58 am

Will maybe shouldn’t have been so obsessed with Joe Cunningham.

Btw, curious that Amanda’s pearls of wisdom only appeared here during the election…

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Dr. Faucius May 29, 2023 at 12:07 pm

Floozy doesn’t even begin to describe this dame.

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Nancy Bryson Top fan May 30, 2023 at 2:51 pm

“Dipstick” falls short of capturing your essence, Dr. F.

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Goody3 Top fan May 29, 2023 at 12:31 pm

Bizarre – to put it mildly.

As to the second sentence above – Mr. Cunningham went from obscurity to candidate then back to obscurity …. why would the former Mrs. Cunningham have any reason to tweet about him when he was NOT a candidate? Not to mention the reason for her tweets – to preserve some degree of privacy for their young son! She wouldn’t (and hasn’t, as far as I can tell) – ergo, the time frame.

“Contempt” is more applicable to the plaintiff/Mr. than to the defendant/ex-Mrs. IMHO. Bad call, Joe.

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Lucia Messina May 29, 2023 at 3:54 pm

“Floozy”..???. What decade do you live in..1920’s. And ” dame” you graduated to the 30’s! Sexism never dies.

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Dr. Faucius May 29, 2023 at 5:57 pm

I came of age when gas was a nickel young lady, roads were nonexistent, and Tesla was a broke genius!

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Everyone's the A-hole May 29, 2023 at 6:06 pm

What a disgusting person.

Which one? Yes.

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stephen henry Top fan May 29, 2023 at 7:23 pm

Better Call Saul … Or Bland-Richter

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Sam Franklin Top fan May 29, 2023 at 8:05 pm

You go Will! Expose the bum for the loser he is. What’s with people attacking his Ex. I have polar opposite political views from her, but right is right and wrong is wrong.

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The Colonel Top fan May 29, 2023 at 11:26 pm

Cuntingham is a “never really was” – I’m beginning to wonder why you even mention the dipschitz.

In a highly gerrymandered district, he somehow managed to just barely beat one of the worst candidates in South Carolina history, Katie Arrington by a very narrow margin winning only one county in the 1st district. His next go around he got beaten by a only slightly better candidate, Nancy Mace. His single congressional achievement? Drinking a beer on the House floor.

Since then, he’s lost his job, his wife and the governor’s race (Gubernor Foghorn Leghorn body slammed him in that one).

Why are we even discussing this guy?

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Reader Top fan May 30, 2023 at 3:24 am

Why are they subpoenaing Fits? Ya know what it really never was? That serious. Either of these people. Move on. You lost a race you were never going to win in SC – a gubernatorial race running as a democrat for governor. Meanwhile she’s exhausting with all of her posts. They take themselves way too seriously.

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tbrewer1 Top fan May 30, 2023 at 7:31 am

Love your spit and vinegar writing style. Take no prisoners and never tell a lie
You are a trues wordsmith of the first order

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tbrewer1 Top fan May 30, 2023 at 7:33 am

Make that true instead of trues

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rpinck Top fan May 30, 2023 at 8:56 am

When Joe was congress-person, he sent a staffer down to Daufuskie to see if we needed anything, We told her we needed to be left alone.

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RC May 30, 2023 at 10:20 am

The SC legislature just passed another abortion ban. This has been major policy objective for conservatives for decades, and yet Will ignores it for articles like this. I wonder why?

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Nancy Bryson Top fan May 30, 2023 at 2:59 pm

The only thing Joe has going for him is his looks (see pic of him and erstwhile spouse). Excellent piece by Will.

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Ralph Hightower Top fan May 30, 2023 at 3:03 pm

There must be something in the water of the First District of South Carolina.

After all, they reelected our GPS-challenged former governot (intentionally misspelled), Mark Sanford, to his prior job as their representative in DC.

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CongareeCatfish Top fan May 30, 2023 at 5:21 pm

Small correction: we now have one statewide elected position filled by a Democrat via assignment by the Governor: the Comptroller, who also sits on the SFAA. Granted, the gyst of the observation being made in the article was that a Democrat can’t get ELECTED to statewide office anymore, so the main point still holds. But its weirdly disfunctional that first of all the House and Senate could not agree on someone, in a State this “red,” who was qualified and a Republican to fill the office, and secondly, that the Gov had to pick a fiscally liberal Democrat to fill this slot – perhaps for as long as four years. Maybe the Gov’s pick was a way of shaming the Legislature…dunno…seems like it would be an awfully bad way to do it.

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Flossip Top fan May 31, 2023 at 7:40 am

The only reason this state is “so red” is because of heavy gerry-mandering by the GOP. Pretty much the story throughout the South. Y’all like to forget that there are a ton of us Dems living in this state too. Meanwhile, I recall the former Mrs. Cunningham’s intensive navel-gazing articles here. I had the continuous thought of “Will actually paid money for that?”

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stumblin joey from scranton June 3, 2023 at 12:15 am

give it up. sheesh. your mashed potato n’ chief needs help off the mat

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william austin Top fan July 10, 2023 at 8:47 pm

Yeah, but y’all, Democrats, are led around by your noses by neoconservatives posing as moderates or liberals who go along with whatever the ‘good ole boy’ regime desires. We can’t do anything in South Carolina; can’t have a horse racing track or even internet gaming. We have no professional sports franchises and if you go to a concert you have to stand in line for hours waiting for your chance to be basically searched with a metal detector. In many states adult citizens are allowed to experience recreation marijuana; but in Carolina people are still being incarcerated, fined and imprisoned over something that is legal across the country. Take a look at the government, law enforcement, the judicial system, as well as the prison system and ask yourself if you believe our government is doing anything that is beneficial to the people.

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william austin Top fan July 10, 2023 at 8:34 pm

C’mon! I sent Joe an email offering to volunteer my time for his election. His response was a form seeking my monetary contribution. He lost the election because he was out of touch with the people who vote in the election. Get somebody like Ravenel to come to Jesus and understand his shortcomings and we might find a governor who will be ‘in touch.’

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