Friday, June 6, 2014

Perhaps South Dakota Democrats Should Think More About Pierre Than D.C.

On the eve of the South Dakota primary, National Journal published a piece asserting that vocal liberals prevented Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin from running for the open United States Senate. Aided and abetted by Tom Daschle, this vociferous minority ensured that Republicans would win the open seat and may be responsible for Republicans gaining the majority in the United States Senate. The article was mostly old news about an inside Washington feud between Harry Reid and Tom Daschle.

The author of the article likely doesn't know lefse from kuchen from kolaches. The piece, however, does invoke a reminder that red states can elect Democrats:
Despite the state's Republican moorings, now-Sen. Heidi Heitkamp's surprising 2012 victory in neighboring North Dakota served as a fresh reminder that strong candidates running in conservative-minded states can overcome disadvantages.
Left unmentioned is the fact that Heitkamp developed her strengths by serving as tax commissioner, an elected office in North Dakota, and as attorney general. To phrase it simply, she went to Bismarck before she went to D.C.

South Dakota Democrats apparently have not internalized that one must go to Pierre before going to D.C. South DaCola reports that Democrats are apparently struggling to find candidates for statewide offices:
What is even more frustrating is that the Dems have yet to say if they have a candidate for Secretary of State. As I have said in the past, this would have been their prime opportunity to go after that seat, especially with all of the scandals with Gant, and Shantel Krebs telling a petitioner last year that the petition and referendum process in South Dakota should be ‘Unconstitutional’. The last kind of person we want as election overseer. Speaking with a prominent Democrat recently, he said that the Dems have NO candidate for SOS and plan on putting their full support behind the governor candidate. Imagine that, putting all of their eggs in one basket.
Let's be clear. George McGovern is not returning from the dead to rebuild the South Dakota Democratic Party. Tom Daschle is not returning to South Dakota to revive a flagging party. Sending Brendan Johnson, a potential rising star, to D.C. won't build the Democrat's infrastructure nor will complaining that Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin, the last Democrat to win a statewide race, is too much of a Blue Dog Democrat for your tastes.

Finding and funding good candidates for attorney general and secretary of state will help build the party. In fact, given how Jason Gant has run the office, that race should top the list of targeted races. That fact that it's not speaks of political incompetence if one is being generous and malpractice if one is being truthful.

South Dakota Democrats, please take the one kernel of truth from the D.C. insiders and apply the Heitkamp example to South Dakota: go to Pierre before going to D.C.

Herein ends the flogging of the deceased equine.


Wismer Needs #RepublicanJesus said...

I think if Wismer took a moderate republican as her running mate the chances of winning in Nov. are much better, than taking a democrat. My opinion is that Wismer will need republican votes in order to beat Daugaard, even though Pat Powers, thinks not even a Republican Jesus can save Wismer.

Had Herseth run for Gov. she beats Daugaard and builds the party.

Kal Lis said...

Herseth Sandlin certainly would have had a better chance against Daugaard than any other Democrat I can think of.

That said, I disagree with those who believe Wismer should look to put the former congresswoman on he ticket. the top person on the ticket can allow herself to be outshone by some young firebrand not by someone of significantly more talent and accomplishments.

As for the Republican running mate, I'm not sure any Republican with the muscle to help Wismer is willing to commit political suicide by running with a Democrat. Second, were such a person to exist, he or she may cost as many Democratic votes as they would provide Republican ones. Third, talk of cross party tickets always has unintended consequences. John McCain's desire to put Joe Lieberman on the ticket brought the scourge of Sarah Palin .