Aberdeen Dems change batting order.

In response to Isaac Latterell's Cinderella victory over Duane Sutton, the Democratic party has announced the change in lineup for the District 3 races. And they repeat an admission that sometimes leaves me shaking my head no matter what side of the aisle it happens on. From the Aberdeen American News:
Names to change on local fall ballot
Dems altering their lineup of candidates
By Scott Waltman
American News Writer


Local Democrats are making some changes to the November ballot.

Al Hoerth, a retired Aberdeen teacher, is the party's new District 3 state Senate candidate. He takes the spot of Ted Kneebone of Aberdeen, who is now seeking one of two District 3 House seats.

Hoerth and Republican opponent Isaac Latterell of Aberdeen are both newcomers to politics. Latterell defeated veteran Sen. Duane Sutton, R-Aberdeen, in the June primary.

Kneebone and Tom Black of Aberdeen are now the Democratic candidates for District 3 House of Representatives. They face incumbent Rep. Al Novstrup, R-Aberdeen, and his son, David Novstrup, also an Aberdeen Republican. Incumbent Rep. Larry Frost, R-Aberdeen, is not seeking re-election.

With Kneebone now running for District 3 House, Democratic candidate David Newquist of Aberdeen has withdrawn.

The two top vote-getters in the House race and the Senate candidate who gets the most votes during the Nov. 7 general election will be elected to two-year legislative terms.

Reason for changes: Deb Knecht of Houghton, chairwoman of the Brown County Democrats, said that Kneebone and Newquist agreed to run as space holders on the ballot. In other words, they were willing to withdraw if other candidates showed interest. She said the recent changes in candidates were the result of Latterell's beating Sutton.

"It was hard to find anybody who wanted to run against (Sutton) because he was so popular and a good senator," Knecht said.

Being able to take on somebody new to the political scene, like Latterell, gives Democrats an opportunity to pick up a seat in District 3 where Republicans now hold all three legislative offices, Knecht said.
Read it all here. Al Hoerth? Heavens no, not Al Hoerth.... (okay. That was sarcasm.) and instead of Isaac getting the kneebone, Ted the placeholder is now running for the House.

Yawn. Sorry, was this supposed to instill fear?

The worst part about the reconfiguration? The people who were in those seats are openly admitting to just being a warm body willing to step aside. I have little more than disdain for those who would run for office and be willing to withdraw if other candidates showed interest. In high school, they'd commonly be derided as pussies. (and as in Wikipedia, that's a derogatory term implying general weakness or cowardice.)

Sound unusually harsh from me? Well, I hold those offices in much high esteem than someone just sticking their name on the ballot "in case someone else might want to do it." They are the ones in Pierre making our laws.

While "to casually roll over and die for someone who comes along who might be better and have more interest in it" shows loyalty for one's party, shouldn't you want it more than that if you're going to gather the signatures and prepare the framework of a campaign?

I thought the laws surrounding replacements were to alleviate problems in case someone's situation changed, or someone died. Not to give political parties another 4 months to recruit someone because the only person with a pulse available at the moment lacks either leadership ability or a spine.

*update*

Yes, in light of letting a few hours pass, I'll concur that my commentary is a bit harsh. In light of a couple of the thoughtful comments I've gotten. But I'd note as I did in the comments -

I'm sure Hoerth is a very nice man, but what I'm saying is - if he's so darned great, where was he in April?

If Herseth dropped out, I would not let the thought of Bruce stepping aside enter my head. And I think Bruce would be rightfully insulted at the notion.

And in this case, if Isaac Latterell is weak, as the Democrats seem to imply (and I would disagree), then why on earth would Kneebone even consider bailing out for the House? And now I'm supposed to believe by making the chamber switch he's magically viable?

I'm still not buying it.

Comments

Aaron Lorenzen said…
Hey PP, tell us how you really feel about this. This does nothing but confirm anyones assumption that democrats are jelly-fish spined creatures.
Anonymous said…
I think we can conclude that David Newquist is all talk and no go. All hat and no cattle. Quick to complain from the sideline but afraid to enter the game.
mjb said…
PP said "political parties." It's not just D's who fielded warm bodies this year.

The placeholder R's in 1 and 2 dropped out.
Anonymous said…
PP,

Before you pooh-pooh Mr. Hoerth, perhaps you should learn a bit more about him. He is a beloved teacher and a well respected business man. He has been very active in the community since long before his opponent was even born.

Al has good friends in Republican and Democratic circles alike. Plus he can carry a good tune. From what I gather, he is a pretty level headed guy much like Duane Sutton. Very well respected and electable. Since you are not from Aberdeen, I would not expect you to know this. I am betting he has more name ID then Latterell even just getting in the race.

Lets be honest, the only reason we are having this conversation is because the GOP's right wing tossed aside one of your good guys because he didn't conform to your radical agenda. I am a Democrat but I have a great deal of respect for Senator Sutton no matter how he voted on 1215. He was my Sentor and it is really sad to see members of his own party show such disrespect to him.

As far as Democrats being jelly-fished spined creatures, it takes a lot of character and humility step aside. PP, you call yourself a politcal strategist, so you should understand this switch up. Please don't tell me that if God forbid, something happened to Stephanie Herseth tomorrow, your party would replace the biggest place holder of all...Bruce Whalen? You know the GOP would ask him to move over in a minute. And No, not because he is a Native American but rather you have more viable candidates like Matt Michels, Larry Russell, Jim Seward etc.

Point is that from time to time something happens in politics that creates opportunities for both parties and both makes moves to take advantage of those opportunities.

So, PP before you turn your nose up at the changes, think about what you would do as the smart politcal operative you are if a strong incumbent was beat out by a weak candidate in a low turn out primary...I am sure you to would change up.
PP said…
Anon 11:18, well thought out commentary, although I would tend to disagree on a few points.

I'm sure Hoerth is a very nice man, but what I'm saying is - if he's so darned great, where was he in April? (aside from the fact our name ID is never as high as those who hype would lead one to believe)

If Herseth dropped out, I would not let the thought of Bruce stepping aside enter my head. And I think Bruce would be rightfully insulted at the notion.

And if Isaac is weak, as you seem to imply (and I would disagree), then why on earth would Kneebone even consider bailing out for the House? And now I'm supposed to believe by making the chamber switch he's magically viable?

I'm still not buying it.
Anonymous said…
PP,

In April, Al Hoerth, like many other Democrats didn't see a need to challenge a well liked Republican. Democrats acknowledged that Duane Sutton is well liked across party lines and it would be tough to make a case to replace him. Unfortunately, in the primary, too many of Duane's Republican supporters stayed home because they didn't dream that he would get beat. Ask Duane how many people regretted not going to the polls for that one race. Enough to put him over the top. Look at the numbers. Latterell didn't beat sutton by much and only about 1000 registered republicans showed up to vote in Brown County.

As far as Kneebone taking on Latterell, again PP put on your operative hat, it is all about match ups and who is the best person to take on the candidate from the oppossing party. That is why we have primaries. Who knows what would have been if Latterell would have been the candidate from the beginning. Maybe the Democrats would have had a primary. Who knows.

Okay, I will buy that you might not have asked Bruce to step aside but I guarantee an effort would be made to get him to step aside. Politcal activists on both sides should expect no less from their respective parties to put up the best candidate for any office. Recruting to challenge an incumbant is much different then recruting for an open seat. More people are interested in the open seat. Therefore when a seat suddenly comes open, parties make their move...this why we the elections we have.
Anonymous said…
12:40:

Is that your criteria for the legislature "well-liked?"

What do you people believe in?

Again, your statements, but more so your actions show that getting elected and having power is more important than creating opportunities and possiblities for the people of South Dakota.

Besides if this guy is a beloved teacher he ought to be staying in the classroom and teaching instead of forcing his school to find a replacement for 40 days.

But, its for the kids right?
Anonymous said…
Hey 1:45,
Read the article. That part that says "retired" teacher. That means he doesn't teach any longer, so no school teaching to miss.
Anonymous said…
Thanks 2:29. What does Latterell stand for other then prying into others personal lives.

I know that Al Hoerth is for fully funding education, and I would bet that being in the real estate business he probably is concerned about economic development and skyrocketing property taxes.

He has grand children and I am sure he wants them to have teachers and have access to good health care. Probably wants to see them have the opportunities he had.

He is a good man. Some how I don't he is on some ego trip. Perhaps he just wants to do something for his community.

His life experience is way more valuable to the people of District 3 then Latterell's support of one abortion bill. Oh, by the way he is also a very active member of his church.
But I guess he doesn't stand for anything.
Anonymous said…
If the guy had some onions and courage behinds his convictions he would have ran in the first place. Instead he sits back and waits for other to bite the bullet before he steps up.

This guy sounds like a real leader...someone who is willing to get out there ahead of issues. He can tackle the tough stuff, so long as it doesn't ruffle any feathers and he doesn't have to be one to take the first bullet.

We have to be concerned now that this guy will actually tell us what we want to hear or what he thinks we want to hear.
Anonymous said…
If the above comments reflect the kind of thinking in South Dakota, Fidel Castro made a huge mistake. His brother sounds like a natural for South Dakota.
Anonymous said…
Anonymous 5:32,

Why is it so hard for you to believe that in April, Al Hoerth was satisfied with the job Senator Sutton was doing and didn't see a need to replace him just because of his registration?

After the primary it was a different race. And in politics timing is everything for candidates.

Despite the primary, Sutton is very well thought of in Aberdeen. People in both parties have a great deal of respect for the man. The majority of people were shocked he lost primary and frankly were concerned that this one issue kid was going to be their senator.

I know Mr. Hoerth is getting encouragement from both parties to run. Aberdeen wants a good leader who is not just a one hit wonder. I can assure you, this wasn't just a Democratic effort but a bi-partisian effort. And I am not talking about Duane Sutton.


You can complain about how he got on the ballot all you want but it doesn't change the fact that the GOP screwed up and will probably lose a seat.

Trying to assassinate Hoerths character won't get you any where.
Anonymous said…
PP - That last comment is way out of line. Pull it.
Anonymous said…
11:14,

You are really sad. Trust me, you don't want to go there. Please define what a "real Republican" is.
PP said…
Anon 11:14 - It is undocumented comments like that which make me contemplate a comment registration system.

Aside from deservedly deleting the comment, which I would have done last night if I wasn't busy making t-shirt screens - please note that I was working on vetting him as soon as I saw he was a candidate.

Aside from finding nothing in the past few years regarding your accusation, I hardly found anything of him in the news at all.

So, unless you have proof, which you should address with me privately first as I'm the person who decides what goes up here, don't do it.

You wouldn't be happy if someone did that to you.
debknecht said…
pp, I thought I would inform you of what actually went on in district 3. I tried to leave a comment earlier, hope this goes through. David Newquist informed us in the beginning that he had some family issues that might not allow him to see the campaign through. However, being the good democrat he is, and given the fact that he is very passionate about what he beleives in, he gave it a shot. About the same time that Duane Sutton got beat in the primary, Davids' situation changed. He realized he would not be able to put the time in that it takes to run a campaign. Ted Kneebone asked to step into Davids' spot. This left the senate candidancy open, and Al Hoerths' name was suggested by both republicans and democrats. Al didn't have an interest in running against Duane as he thought he was a good senator and liked him. So, the changes were made. I thought you probably had a play by play of this as we had a couple of republican visitors at our meeting last Thursday night. We hope they had a good time, Lars Herseth was our speaker so I think they were entertained. Anyway, before you start criticizing our candidates, maybe you should find out something about them. You are setting the tone for a very nasty campaign and I for one am very tired of all that. We need to stick to the issues. After all, I think we are all bigger than that.

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