Wow. What a day. First the fire, and now this:

Gov. Mark Sanford has suspended state Treasurer Thomas Ravenel after it was announced Tuesday the Charleston Republican had been indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of conspiracy to possess with the intent distribute cocaine.

According to the indictment, beginning in 2005 – before he was elected state treasurer – Ravenel conspired with Michael L. Miller to possess with intent to distribute cocaine.

The story notes that, if convicted, Ravenel could face up to 20 years in jail and a $1 million fine, but lets be serious — it’s Thomas Ravenel.

Update: Ravenel has left his position as state chairman for the Giuliani campaign.

“Our campaign has no information about the accusations pending against Mr. Ravenel,” says Giuliani political director Mark Campbell.”

Here’s the indictment:

The Grand Jury Charges: That beginning at a time unknown to the grand jury, but beginning at least in or around late 2005, and continuing thereafter, up to and including the date of this indictment , in the District of South Carolina, the defendants, Thomas Ravenel and Michael L. Miller, knowingly and intentionally did combine, conspire, and agree together and have tacit understanding with each other and others, both known and unknown to the grand jury, to knowingly, intentionally, and unlawfully possess with intent to distribute and to distribute a quantity of cocaine, a Schedule II controlled substance in violation of Title 21, United State Code, Section 841(b)(1)(C).

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