Todd Epp anounces he's out from Billion campaign

Without a lot of details, Todd Epp announced over at his weblog SD Watch that he's no longer associated with the Billion campaign.

It's certainly their loss, as I've considered Todd to be honest and amiable, as well as having the courage of his convictions. That, and he knows that the campaign is as every bit as important as the message. And the Dems have too few people that recognize that truth.

It's like the story that was told of Judge Patrick McKeever. when his appointment for that or some other office was up in the Republican controlled State Senate during the Kneip years. It was a hotly contested appointment which caused consternation on both sides of the aisle. That is, until Clint Roberts was asked for his opiniopn on the appointment.

His reply? "I'd let him ride my ride my horse." The debate was over. And the appointment, approved.

So Todd, you might not be with the Billion campaign anymore. But if I had a horse, I'd let you take it for a spin.


Anonymous said…
I would like to know the details, but it appears that Todd's not talking. Maybe Billion's not liberal enough for Todd?? :-) Seriously, I agee this is a loss for Billion.
Anonymous said…
Epp was purged by the Hildebrand liberals in the Billion campaign. They despise him for being so honest.
todd douglas said…
Doesn't that mean every senior person that was with Billion for the first six months of the race has been fired/replaced in the last month?
Anonymous said…
Billion's long-time friend and campaign manager Bob Steven was fired a few weeks ago too. Looks like Jack should have stuck to retirement. You'd be stunned at what's happening inside the Billion "campaign."
Wes said…
The Jack Billion campaign has got to be one of the biggest blown Democratic opportunities in decades. They had a huge target in Rounds, who has made lots of mistakes, and they haven't done anything to make hay out of them. So, who was in charge prior to the saturday night massacre anyway?
Anonymous said…
for anon 5:11, Bob Stevens was the campaign manager and Todd was the press secretary. I never saw either of them ever quoted or making news. They got canned. That's what happens when people in charge of publicizing a candidate do not publicize the candidate. It's the market at work. You right-wingers should like that.
PP said…
I don't know if I agree with that; in my mind, a good campaign press secretary works well with the state's media in getting their candidate's message out, and stays out of the press themselves in favor of their candidate making news.
Anonymous said…
Uh, the campaign spokesman and manager are not the ones who are supposed to be making the's the candidate. Billion's gotten plenty of ink when he isn't being overshadowed by his publicity-hungry, ego-driven running mate...hey, come to think of it, the lefties who think the running mate walks on water (oops!!! not in the religious sense, of course) might have had something to do with this???? Or maybe Billion just doesn't have anything to say and Epp couldn't bring himself to make stuff up.
Anonymous said…
Epp's pretty inconsistent, if you ask me. First he's a Dem, then an Independent, then a Dem again. First he's a lawyer, then a press secretary, then he quits as press secretary, and he's looking to get hired by some other campaign. I think he has Darin Smith syndrome.
Anonymous said…
Wish I was in on all the Democratic gossip, but alas am not.

I just wish both Epp and Billion good luck in whatever follows. Having worked once many,many years on a campaign I know it is very, very tough for both the candidate and campaign managers to not get very frustrated in a state so very Republican for all the wrong reasons.

Billion for Good Government,
Not one Round cent for crony capitalism.

Gotta sloganeer a bit here.
Anonymous said…
So Todd, what happened?
Anonymous said…
For the record, Bob Stevens is still on the Billion campaign. He was not fired. Nor was Todd Epp.

Billion still has a huge target in Marion Mike Rounds, who continues to suffer from his own mistakes and now is under 50% voter support in polls. Billion can win this race, although it's still an uphill battle.

Rounds is against the total abortion ban, but he signed it. He's for the death penalty but against applying it.

A moment of truth: Watch the Lt. Governor Daugaard commercial talking about Rounds' two faces. Do we really want a two-faced governor?
Anonymous said…
I think Todd Epp was given the job of making sure Billion's relatives did not show up at his events and attack his beliefs.

We all know how that worked out.
Anonymous said…
Jack billion, win or lose, will be Tim Johnson best friend in 2008.

Billion's only job right now is to run interference for Johnson and to bring Rounds down below 50%.

Rounds hasn't helped himself either. His junior varsity political consulting and failure to bring in consultants other than his family has only worsened his future prospects and those of the GOP majority in the state house and senate.
Todd Epp said…

Thank you for your very kind comments. You don't know how much I appreciate it.

Also, to some of the rest of you who have made charitable comments, thank you. That is gratifying.

To those of you who were less than charitable, I agree, politics is a results based business. And sometimes things happen between staff and candidate. Certainly there are some things I would do differently if I could do things over. Believe me, I realize I am not perfect--far from it.

I worked very hard for Jack and Eric. I had some successes and some failures. But it wasn't for a lack of effort. Sometimes things just don't work out, despite everyone's best intentions. Jack and Eric are both good men.

One thing I will address: I have remained an attorney throughout the process and will continue to practice law for the foreseeable future. It is my profession.

I am very passionate about what I do--as a lawyer, as a political operative, as a father, as a soccer coach, as a writer, as a husband, as a person. Sometimes that is a positive; sometimes it can make life, well, interesting.

Again, thanks for the kind thoughts and even the less than kind ones.

The Todd Epp Story has not yet been written!

Best regards,

Todd Epp
Anonymous said…
Wow Todd,
I'm really not all that aware of all of the ins and outs of politics in SD. I read the WAR COLLEGE because I find it interesting to read people at their worst...and their best.

Your post is someone at their best--even in the midst of a difficult situation.

To be charitable even when under attack and stress shows character.

My hat is off to you!
Anonymous said…
I agree with anonymous 8:45

Lawrence and Schiller might do nice ads, but when your 'stratergy' think tank consists of your dad, your sister from out of state and your brother, Rounds has a pretty dim star chamber.
Oldguy said…
I think, for what ever reason, losing Todd is Billions lost!
Anonymous said…
I just have three thoughts on all this:

1 - I always think it is funny when people are critical of Rounds for NOT relying on professional consultants. I would think that most people would appreciate a candidate who relies on friends and family rather than professionals.

2 - I don't understand the post about the Daugaard TV spot about Rounds being two-faced. You can watch the ad on Rounds' website (as I just did). It seems to be the whole point of the ad is that HE IS NOT two-faced.

3 - One poster said that Rounds' support has fallen below 50% - I am just curious where they heard that because I haven't heard any polling for a while. I cannot think why his support would have slipped that much. The SurveyUSA popularity poll has been varied wildly from month-to-month for the last four or five months, but there is no reason to think that Rounds' support has fallen that much.

I don't know Todd Epp, but he seemed to me to the guy who did all the work for the Billion campaign - at least in regard to the production of press releases, statements, and content on the website. He was obviously a hard worker, albeit on a sinking ship. I am sure he's a big loss for Billion. The recent staff changes have the look of a "panic" on Billion's part - and I think it is clear why he would be panicking.
Anonymous said…
This thread proves one thing: South Dakota has a world franchise on stupid.
Flo said…
I agree. When politics gets this petty and absurd, one must ask "why bother?"
Anonymous said…
the loss of Todd was huge for Billion--I have never seen someone who would work the media and write like Todd. He can tell stories from the heart--yep that is passion! Lately one wonders if Billion is actually a candidate--do you want to be Gov? You don't act like it. No money perhaps, a disinterested body presentation in meetings, not prepared, no organization. Billion likes to be surrounded by people who say you are wonderful and does not like to hear the truth--you are losing!! Hang it up!!

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