He’s behind at the moment--how far is hard to tell--but his menu of issues might actually be appealing in a state that isn’t your father’s South Carolina. (Actually, it’s my father’s South Carolina. Opa and Oma Knippenberg relocated to S.C. to find an affordable retirement community closer to the interesting grandkids. Their neighbors are from all over the place, and one of the biggest sports in their community is bocce, not exactly native to the Upstate. But I digress....) So, yes, social conservatism. And, yes, economic populism. But also yes to some of the issues that people regard as allegedly oddball.
Can Huckabee make a dent in S.C.? A lot, I think, depends upon whether Fred Thompson can hold on. Even more depends upon whether Huckabee’s rise in Iowa is sustained. Did you realize that he hasn’t actually been in Iowa since November 8th, that his rise there probably has more to do with viral marketing?
Update: The latest polling shows great volatility in S.C., with Romney and Huckabee moving upward, Thompson moving down a bit (will his momentum carry him further? I think so), and Giuliani plummeting. Still, undecideds comprise a huge bloc. I’d bet that, after Iowa, people will get really, really serious and we’ll begin to see where matters settle.