Senator Jim Hundstad is less than honest. Again.

Remember back during session when I railed on Senator Jim Hundstad (a former teacher) for his blatant plagiarism of his legislative column? It was a blogpost I titled "When teachers plagiarize. A legislator not giving credit where it is due."
If I didn't know better, I'd say all he did for his weekly legislative report is to copy a few of the GPPPI e-mail reports to his local newspapers, slap a paragraph on the beginning and on the end, and make it look like it's his own work.

It's like he erased the name off of someone else's homework and wrote his own.


So, as far as the SDWC is concerned, Senator Hundstad's legislative report this week gets a Failing grade. Not for content, but for not giving credit where credit is due. For presenting the work of another as his own. And Senator, if you're going to parrot GPPPI material for your weekly legislative reports, at least give them the appropriate citation.
I know it got attention, because the following week, he was forced to print a correction where he acknowledged the source of the content for his prior column. One would have thought that his public spanking on being less than honest with his legislative column would have dismayed him from playing fast and loose with the truth in the future.

Well.... Since I'm writing this, of course it didn't. What's the most recent example of Hundstad's dishonesty? Here you go:

I saw this ad yesterday myself, and while I was driving to Brookings, I've had it also sent to me by no fewer than three people. Suffice it to say that people are p*ssed off about this ad, entitled "Working together we can Get-er Done."

I could understand why they'd be annoyed by the misspellings, even getting the "Git-r Done" wrong. But (at least according to my e-mail) the picture of Hundstad with Governor Mike Rounds has Republicans from Aberdeen to Pierre to Sioux Falls absolutely livid. By picturing Hundstad with Governor Mike Rounds, this ad seems to imply an endorsement or implying that they somehow work together on issues.

Let me assure you, this couldn't be farther from the truth.

If I was to give it a name, I'd call it "National Enquirer" style photography. Where a photo is selectively edited or selectively angled to imply something that doesn't exist. It's obvious from the content of the picture, this is simply a portion of a photograph depicting the Governor signing a piece of legislation and Hundstad was one of several sponsors. Nothing more.

It's not unusual for these types of photographs to be used in newspapers noting the passage of legislation. What is unusual is for them to find their way into campaign advertisements without permission.

I've done campaign photography for years. And one of the things that's usually called for is the permission of people being used in those photos. Candidates don't want an unhappy person screaming about their being included in a campaign shot without being asked. And in this instance, that's exactly what Jim Hundstad has done.

But I also have the strong feeling that this is going to come back to haunt him.

Brian Johnson, the same opponent that Hundstad had two years ago, is giving the race another run. Up until now, he's been running a fairly low key, on the ground race. His wife is expecting, and he's had farm chores to do.

But with this photograph hitting the Doland newspaper, it's kicked things into high gear, and provided strong motivation to get rid of Hundstad once and for all.

Hundstad has managed to fly below the radar for years at the same time he's proposed goofy tax schemes, such as his authoring a bill on "intangible property tax." (a new statewide income tax on the margin between purchase price and current value on stocks, bonds, money markets, mutual funds, franchise values, etc.) If there ever was a target for GOP ire, with goofy tax and spending schemes, he's it. And now, he's managed to fire up the troops.

Except they're troops on the GOP side of the aisle.

One thing I found myself pondering.... This advertisement placed by Hundstad shows him with Mike Rounds, at the same time that the Billion campaign finds itself floundering and possibly short on cash for advertising. Why do I think he's short on cash? Well, you don't see him in the papers, or on TV, do you? Hundstad is providing yet more column inches advertising and depicting the Governor, (even though it's unwanted).

My prediction? Watch for this ad to come back and bite Hundstad in the ass hard. He's fired up the GOP troops, and with this picture is inviting the Governor to become involved in the race. But if that happens, it's not going to be an involvement to Hundstad's benefit. It will likely come in the form of an unequivocal endorsement of Brian Johnson's candidacy.

In fact, when I asked Brian himself about it, he was kind enough to give the following statement for this website:
"While the advertisement is "legal", it is unethical on Senator Hundstad's part to imply to the public that Governor Rounds supports his campaign in any way. In fact, the Governor has supported my campaign publicly and financially as I try to unseat a Senator who has continuously misled the public on his true intentions as a legislator. The advertisement is another example of his desperation to gain traction with his campaign, as it becomes increasingly clear that his actions over the past two years have distanced him from his constituents.

The voters of District 2 have made it clear with their growing support of my campaign that they are tired of Senator Hundstad's attempts to destroy our tax system. His support of Amendment D, his plan to fund education with a state income tax, and his inability to LISTEN to the people whom he represents are just a few examples that I continually hear from people as to why they will not support him. They are proud to support my campaign, as I strive to bring a strong, common-sense voice to Pierre."
Thanks, Brian.

Now, when you think about it, all of this is a lot of headache earned for Hunstad just for one small ad in the Doland newspaper, isn't it? Maybe next time, he'll strive more for honesty and good government than trying to imply an endorsement that doesn't exist.

*** Important Update - More dishonesty from Hundstad ***

This ad makes reference to "Hundstad’s legislation insures (sic) our SD Guard and Reservists receive treatment equal to regular armed service personnel"

What measure is he talking about? Because the only thing out there recently was SB 172 - a measure he had nothing to do with. The only thing out there that might be associated with him at this point is HCR 1006.

If it is HCR 1006 he's referring to, the picture included with the ad provides even more of a deception. Why? House Concurrent measures don't go to the Governor. They're simply resolutions in support with no force of law, and no signature by the Governor.

A misleading picture and a misleading ad. It makes one wonder about other things Hundstad is misleading his constituents on.


Anonymous said…
The first question is what authoritative dictionary provides the correct spelling for "Get-r-done" or "Get-er-done" or "Get r done"? This is a phrase that is rendered phonetically, but I assume you are using Larry the Cable Guy's CD cover as the source of correctness.

I also note in interpreting the photo for us, you use the phrase "seems to imply." Now that is a definitive statement, if I ever saw one.

PP, you can rupture yourself straining that hard. The carp are sure running today. And what is your real issue with this man?
Anonymous said…
PP - I think you are correct that this will backfire on Hundstad.
Anonymous said…
Anon 9:06:

is that all you can muster: what the authoritative dictionary is for slang? Go render your phonics at a local school and help some kids read.

What piece of legislation is Hunstad talking about?
Anonymous said…
Aren't these "photo opportunity" photos done for exactly this purpose? It's not like Rounds didn't realize his photograph was being taken. Hundstad had to have been invited in to the Gov's office and had the photo taken, right?
Anonymous said…
"the ad seems to imply that they work together on issues".
Wow! what a novel idea, elected officials from different parties working together.
Anonymous said…
what is the bill they are "working together" on?
PP said…
9:36 Actually, not this one.

It was done from a different angle than it usually is done. And this one is cropped and photoshopped to the max.

Aside from the fact we don't know "when" it was taken. Meaning, that we don't know what bill this was for.

And best of all, it's coming to light that it's questionable that the legislation that Hundstad is talking about might not exist. The only thing out there is a legislative resolution that isn't something signed by the Governor.
Melissa said…
I can see the point of view this writer is trying to get across. As a writer myself spellings and misspellings alike play a big part of any advertisement, especially a campaign advertisement. If one does not take the time to to see that a play in words is not phonetically correct, even in this case it makes one wonder how thoroughly he will think through bills on the table before rendering a vote.
Think about it if the Governor had truly endorsed the ad, wouldn't it have said in small print on the bottom, "This ad paid for by Governor Mike Rounds."
Anonymous said…
The real news here is that Brian Johnson is assailing his fellow Republicans Bill Napoli and Ted Klaudt by saying their amendment D is designed to destroy our tax system.

People may disagree on the merit of amendment D, but such a vicious attack on fellow Republicans claiming they want to destroy our tax system is uncalled for. JOhnson should apologize to Napoli, Klaudt, and even to Hundstad - who is working across party lines in support of amendment D.

Hundstad should be congratulated for working across party lines - not vilified.
mjb said…
What? Hundstad can agree with people, but Johnson can't disagree? Sounds like a double standard.

Besides, I thought the post was about Hundstad's dishonesty more than him trying to make it look like he works with Republicans.
Dick Kelly said…
SB 172 was my bill and Hunstad was not even a co-sponsor. It sailed through both houses unanimously.
Anonymous said…
If Johnson has the good sense and integrity to oppose fellow Republicans on Amendment D and stand up for what he believes, he's the kind of guy everyone should want in the legislature. It's too bad that he's not a Democrat, but he has my support anyway.
Anonymous said…
Hundstad never said he was talking about "Nuclear Dick's" SB 172.

Instead of assuming what bill Hundstad's referring to, Instead of making unfounded and libelous statements about his honesty, why don't you ask him what bill he's referring to? Never occurred to you?

It's pretty chicken$&!+ to accuse someone of lying without verifying which bill Hundstad's referring to as his legislation.
Anonymous said…
If you look at passed legislation, Hundstand rivals Kloucek for the lowest amount of bills ever passed. Now I'm not one for saying we need lawmakers to pass a bunch of bills every year, but you'd think that a guy who has been there for a while would propose something that makes sense and actually gets passed.

Instead, we see bills from him that include:
* marketing SD in Mexico
* requiring a 4 day school week - proposed twice, and his only bill of 2005
* taxation of intangible property

Here's one that he passed in 2003...
An Act to revise certain provisions regarding the records kept by taxidermists and the inspection of taxidermists.

Wow. That's groundbreaking legislation. This guy needs to go.
Anonymous said…
Oh, give me a break. Napoli doesn't know what a "fellow Republican" is. He is a libertarian. Ever tried to get elected as a libertarian?
PP said…
11:48 - If you didn't happen to read the post before you shot off your mouth, I did check. And there's nothing in the past two years that comes close to his claims.

As far as being "unfounded and libelous?" If you didn't notice, I provided the citations (i.e.the proof) to back up my claims.

If anything, I err on the side of caution. And in this case, I've got him dead to rights. I'd take this same information to the newspapers any day of the week, and whether it's me, or the Aberdeen American News, Hundstad has some "'splainin to do."

Hundstad was caught red-handed plagarizing his legislative column earlier this year, and admitted he used someone else's information without citing the sources the very next week.

Now, once again, he's caught red-handed claiming credit for some unnamed and uncited legislation that puts reservists on equal footing to active duty military, despite the fact there's no evidence of his participation in the official record in any measure such as this.

Don't believe me? Go check out the LRC website yourself and tell me where in the past two years he sponsored anything of this nature.

And on top of it all, he's deceptively inferring that he worked with the Goveror to do it.

If anyone thinks they can dispute any of this, I'd invite you to bring it on.

Think I'm being untruthful in my assertions? Put up your proof.

If it meets the test of truth, I'll give you the column inches here.

Anon 11:48 - until you have that - until that point, go home. You're embarassing yourself.
Anonymous said…
Amendment D would destroy the tax system.
Anonymous said…
PP, you're the one embarassing yourself.

You're the one claiming Hundstad's lying, but you only looked at the past 2 years of his legislative record. He's been in office 6 years. You didn't bother to research his entire legislative record, and you didn't bother to ask him what bill he's referring to. You then flew off half-cocked and made wild assertions about Hundstad's truthfulness.

That's a shoddy bit of investigation to do before calling someone a liar. Check Hundstad's full legislative record. Then either claim you're right based on the entirety of evidence, or be man enough to admit you made a mistake.
Anonymous said…
In 2004, Hundstad was the prime sponsor of HB1085, which gave disabled members of the reserves and national guard the same right to receive reduced price fishing and hunting licenses on the same terms as disabled members of the active duty military. For some reason, the guard and reserved were discriminated against in this regard. Hundstad corrected that.

Hundstad was the prime sponsor of HB 1085. The co-sponsors were from both parties. Governor Rounds signed the bill.

Notice in the photo how Hundstad, a Democrat, is standing right next to Rounds for a bill signing. That doesn't occur, especially for Democrats, unless they're the prime sponsor. What in the world is wrong with Hundstad using a picture of the Governor signing a bill he was the prime sponsor of??

PP, if you had done your homework, this wouldn't have even been a story. You were in such a hurry to accuse Hundstad of lying that you forgot to do your research.

I understand this is a blog, not the media. But learn from this. Try to be fair to everyone.
PP said…
He's claiming this for a 2004 bill for fishing licenses while he was in the House??

You've got to be kidding me.

And it's not even for all memnbers of the reserves, just those who are disabled.

What has he done in the past two years since he's been a Senator?

The ad says "Hundstad’s legislation insures (sic) our SD Guard and Reservists receive treatment equal to regular armed service personnel." I dont see "2004 legislation" or "fishing licenses," or for "some veterans" anywhere in the text.

At best, this ad is puffery of the truth far too close to the breaking point.

It should have read - "in 2004, I got a bill passed in the House. Since? Ehh.... that's another story."
Anonymous said…
No apology - just more attacks. That's pitiful!

Be a man, PP. Admit you were wrong.

Hundstad passed a bill the governor signed and he used a photo of the bill signing. It was a bipartisan bill, and Hunstad says "working together".

There's nothing untruthful here except PP's libelous claim that Hundstad was lying. All because PP didn't do his research.

Answer one question PP? You gonna take that to the newspapers now?
Anonymous said…
What are you talking about anon? Hundstad's ad is at the least purposely misleading, and at the most, lying. PP has every right to criticize the man for his apparently passing acquaintance with the truth.

How is a minor fix to a law allowing disabled guard and reservists the same reduced price on fishing and hunting licenses as disabled regular service vets the same as ensuring "our SD Guard and Reservists receive treatment equal to regular armed service personnel?" You're really stretching on the "working together."

Someone should take this to the papers. Tell your "it's not untrue if you look to 2004 hunting and fishing licenses" story to the voters and see what they think about how truthful it is. It's obvious he's trying to take credit for something he didn't do. If you split enough hairs, I suppose you can at least make the argument that it's not lying. But it's pathetic nonetheless.
Anonymous said…
In Salem they dunked suspects in ponds, pressed them to death, and burned them at the stake over issues like this. Have fun, girls. It's a democracy now. We all get our turns.
Anonymous said…

Did someone call Hundstad a witch?

I think this is everyone having their turn. Looks like you wasted yours...
Anonymous said…
If any backfiring is done it will happen to PP and Johnson.
Anonymous said…

No, it's called sarcasm.
Anonymous said…
Go ahead and attack Hundstad. He'll get all the free press he wants talking about how disabled veterans are important to America and how he values their sacrifice -and his critics apparently don't.

"Hundstad makes life easier for PEOPLE and catches hell for it." I can't wait to read about it in the press.
Anonymous said…
It was an innocuous bill that simply said if you were in the guards (active or inactive) and 20 years later, you get in a car accident leaving you disabled, you get a reduced price license. That was an addition to previous language that said if you were on active duty and was subsequently injured, you recieved a reduced fee license.
It was a feel-good bill that you couldn't vote against even if you wanted to.
PP is right that the add is very misleading.
Anonymous said…
Wasn't it Gov. Rounds who made an ad with former legislator Kent Frerichs without his permission, in order to convey a "bi-partisan" event. Not trying to make an "everybody does it" arguement or overuse "parenthesis" but lord have mercy...this is a mountain and this is a molehill
Anonymous said…
Anon 6:55, the more Hundstad talks, the tougher road his road becomes.

Further, if you're keeping track, year-to-date, he has 1)brazenly plagiarized a weekly newspaper column, 2) looked a fool when failing miserably to answer questions on Amendment D, and 3) taken the most monumental bill he has ever gotten passed--to sell discounted hunting or fishing licenses to disabled people who were formerly in the National Guard or Reserves--and made it sound as though he accomplished something profound.

This is unforgivable. To Jim Hundstad, the National Guard and Reserves are pawns in his re-election bid. To suggest anything else is dishonest. If you disagree, consider what HB 1085 (2004) actually accomplished and what he implied it did.

It affected only the disabled.
He implied it affected all.
He said it "insures our S.D. Guard and Reservists receive treatment equal to regular armed service personnel."

Of course, people in Doland probably wouldn't rally around an ad that said, "A couple people can save a buck or two on their hunting licenses because of what I managed to do."

Oh, and never mind the fact that "his" bill was killed in committee the first time it was heard. According to the state website, the bill died, and was subsequently revived and amended extensively before finally passing.

It is particularly fitting that Jim Hundstad would have introduced such a bill. He's really hunting for a platform as he fishes for votes.
Anonymous said…
The last time Hundstad talked about amendment D, Napoli showed up, and the questions were answered, and it was the opponents of D that looked silly,not Hundstad.
Anonymous said…
Who answered the questions? Too bad a guy has to drive all the way across the state to save Hundstad from himself.
Anonymous said…
Anon 4:39, I don't think you were at the meeting. Everyone was asking questions, Hunstad and Napoli were unable to answer a lot of questions. They kept saying they needed 19 fixes to be passed in 2007 to fix D. Why not write a good admendment to begin with?

4:39 if you were there, why didn't you bring up the point that Hunstad talked about different kinds of furnaces vs Admendment D for 10 minutes? Is that because Hunstad has no answers?

Make sure to vote for Hunstad, he was one of 2 people who voted against have sex offenders listed on the internet.

I don't think Jim is a liar, I think he feels he is going to get beat. So he brings up this bill from the past and attempts to hide what he believes in.

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