In South Carolina, "Fighting over politics is sport," the New York Times reports today, but it's not a very popular sport, unless it's being parodied. Just before voting in the Republican presidential primary that could determine whether the nominating contest ends now or lasts for weeks, voters were no-shows at the candidates events. Newt Gingrich had to cancel an appearance five minute before start time Friday because hardly anyone was sitting in the bleachers. Rick Santorum spoke to empty seats Thursday. And on Tuesday, Romney aides roped off half a convention hall to make it look more full. It didn't work. A line has formed for only one presidential hopeful: Stephen Colbert.

A Ron Paul event Friday:

Slate's Dave Weigel tweets this photo, saying, "The danger of events in giant airplane hangers."

Gingrich's cancellation Friday:

(Photo via Associated Press.)

"Mr. Gingrich was scheduled to speak at the Southern Republican Leadership Conference, a four-day event held in the basketball stadium at the University of Charleston," The Wall Street Journal's Danny Yadron reports. "But the stands were all-but empty about five minutes before the former House speaker was set to speak, and his appearance was called off."

Santorum's empty seats Thursday:

(Photo via Associated Press.)

Santorum spoke to the Southern Republican Leadership Conference a day before Gingrich was supposed to. Is public speaking more or less terrifying if you know for certain no one cares what you're saying?

Romney's event Tuesday:

With this photo, ABC News' Jon Karl pointed out the failed attempt to make the room looked pack not by making the crowd bigger, but the room smaller.

Where is everybody? They're more interested in a funner, faker presidential campaign. "Convinced the entire College of Charleston on line now for Colbert/ Cain event," the Huffington Post's Michael Calderone tweets. Stephen Colbert is hosting an event with Herman Cain called "THE ROCK ME LIKE A HERMAN CAIN: SOUTH CAIN-OLINA PRIMARY RALLY." Cain is still on the South Carolina ballot, and Colbert has picked him as his "vessel."

(Photo via Associated Press.)