Conventional political wisdom says Elizabeth Colbert-Busch, a Charlestonian, Democrat, and sister of TV comedian Stephen Colbert, is more likely to ice skate in Charleston Harbor than win a seat in the House. Yet stranger things have happened in South Carolina.
When voters in South Carolina talk about Elizabeth Colbert-Busch, a Democratic candidate in a special election to fill the 1st District Congressional seat, they tend to focus less on her famous TV brother, Stephen Colbert, and more on the place where she grew up: James Island.
With around 20,000 residents, James Island is the working-class suburb of Charleston, the "edge of America" as one sign says, a throwback sort of place where churches promote grace as "the final frontier."
To be sure, Ms. Colbert-Busch grew up in her large Catholic family, along with her younger brother, in a house off a dirt road on James Island. Her father, before dying in a plane crash along with two of his sons in 1974, was a vice president at the local medical school. But according to Mr. Colbert, the family also embraced an island culture dominated by pickups, piles of crab pots, white-booted fishermen, a place where the comedian once said “I spent my whole childhood on the water, fishing and crabbing and shrimping … Home for me is being in the water, like floating in a creek."
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