Argus Leader on the Gubernatorial Race: Things aren't looking good for Jack
Today in the Sioux Falls Argus Leader, Terry Woster takes a look at the chances of Gubernatorial Candidate Jack Billion. And the article isn't going to raise his hopes any:
Republican Gov. Mike Rounds has money, name recognition, high approval marks and the power of incumbency as he seeks a second four-year term.Read it all here.
His main challenger, Democrat Jack Billion of Sioux Falls, has little more than three months in a state that nearly always chooses Republicans for governor to convince a majority of voters he'd be a better leader.
Billion, 67, a retired surgeon and former legislator, says he can meet the challenge because Rounds hasn't made the strides South Dakota needs in such areas as education and health care. He often points to what he calls poorly paid teachers, underfunded rural schools and an overall lack of focus on small business - all areas that he says state government can help bolster.
"Unless something goes really wrong, Rounds gets re-elected," says Kenneth Blanchard, who teaches at Northern State University. "It's always possible the ground may shake under our feet. ... But when I look at my years in South Dakota, and I came here in 1989, I haven't seen anything close to a competitive challenge from Democrats for governor."
Lerseth and Blanchard agree that there could be a temptation for Billion to "go negative," that is, begin to attack Rounds directly. They're not sure how effective such a strategy would be.
"You really have to think you can hurt Rounds that way before you'd go negative," Blanchard said. "Billion and his organization have their work cut out to make him a viable alternative to the governor."