I told you this race was going to heat up.
Rapid City Weekly: Schumacher paid to jump ship to Shaw campaign

I had given you a hint on this, and I've been sitting on it until the dust cleared and the races were on, but it's now confirmed. After working on the initial stages of Rapid City Councilman Sam Kooiker's fledgling Mayoral race, Councilman Mike Schumacher has been paid to change horses in mid stride over to Mayor Mike Shaw's campaign.

This article from the Rapid City Weekly News is a must read tale of ambition, politics, and betrayal. Here's a preview:
Schumacher was approached by Rapid City businessman and Shaw supporter Doug Hamilton to help run Shaw’s mayoral campaign. Schumacher said he was talking about helping Councilman Sam Kooiker get into the mayor’s chair, but a better offer came along.

How much Schumacher will be paid has yet to be determined, as the contract is not yet complete, he said.

Some people view it as strange that Schumacher has seemingly gone from one candidate to another, especially for a price. However, Schumacher said he does not see it that way.

and..

“It might be that they wanted to make Sam not run for the office by recruiting me, but they have not been successful there.”

and...

“People are trying to make me out to be a traitor or a Judas, but tomorrow is guaranteed for no one,” Schumacher said. “My obligation is to my family. If people disagree with my decision, I respect that, but I want them to know I did not come to this decision quickly. This is personal and it is unfortunate that there are people out there with an agenda.”

When asked about Schumacher’s involvement in his campaign, Shaw said he had not started his campaign yet and denied paying Schumacher for his help. However, Schumacher said he and Shaw had spoken about the campaign a couple of times.
This must read article by Lana Bradstream can be read here at the Rapid City Weekly News.

Wow. I've been hearing rumblings on it for a couple of weeks as it's rippled throughout the western South Dakota conservative political community and made it's way to Pierre.

I had heard a dollar amount being bandied about in the neighborhood of $35k or more just to run Shaw's campaign, and if Mike can get it, then all power to him for commanding such a fee. But aside from the money he's getting from the effort, there's going to come a price.

In the earlier post hinting about this, under the comments, someone used a phrase about "pieces of silver." Because that's how most people are going to view it. Mike himself provided the imagery in the Rapid City News article.

He himself referred to Judas. For those of you not familiar with the new testament, as related in Wikipedia, "according to the account given in the gospels, Judas carried the disciples' money box and betrayed Jesus for a bribe of "thirty pieces of silver" by identifying him with a kiss."

Mike registered the domain name for Kooiker for Mayor last year. So he's been working on the Kooiker mayoral race as a friend and supporter for the past 6-7 months. I suspect he was doing it for free, because that's what you do for close friends.

And now, after being offered a significant amount of money to work for Shaw, someone he had been critical of for his entire term of office, he's abandoned that person he supposedly called his friend for the almighty dollar. His pieces of silver.

In our elected officials, we value qualities such as loyalty, and friendship. We value that elusive thing called honor.

So when someone we thought had those qualities shows that they can be purchased - they can be bought and sold as chattel - it shocks the sensibilities. It makes feelings of offense and disgust start to well up within us, because we want to believe the people we elect for office are better than that. And it hurts us when we find out that it's not true.

Yes, Mike may have had someone meet his price to jump ship. And to him, it may have been well worth the money he got. But the cost to him goes beyond the monetary.

It's cost him so much more than his fee.


*Update*

One of my attorney friends had mentioned this when I told him the tale.

He noted that there was a case in Winner where a councilman had a fiduciary interest in a council action, and the court made such a ruling that he thought it could have implications in any decisions made by the Rapid City Common Council where Schumacher would support the mayor.

In TONY HANIG v. CITY OF WINNER, 2005 SD 10, which you can read for yourself here, the South Dakota Supreme Court ruled that "due process requires a fair tribunal" and that because someone even had a “indirect pecuniary interest,” it invalidated the vote.

I think I'd like a few more attorney opinions (because I'm certainly not an attorney) to be sure, but with a councilman supposedly being paid tens of thousands of dollars to run the mayor's campaign, it seems that nearly every vote where the mayor is advocating a position could be challenged because of the fiduciary interest between the two.

Comments

DakotaDem said…
PP, I thought this was your usual hype and selective editing until I read the article.

I wonder if Kookier has trouble sleeping at night. Not because he should feel guilty about anything, but that big knife that Schumacher stuck in his back has got to be uncomfortable.
Anonymous said…
Big mike must have needed that special chair to hold his big ego.
Anonymous said…
If this doesn't demonstrate the need for campaign finance reform in this state, I don't know what does.
Anonymous said…
I don't think this has anything to do with campaign finance reform.
I think it has more to do with political stratagies.
People can come and go in political campaigns, before, during and after.
What is bothering people i would say is the fact Mike and Kookier are considered friends and Mike and Shaw didn't see eye to eye on issues.
Is it about loyalty, money or other factors??? I would say ponder the questions.

Rapid has had some troubling times in the city office lately. hummmmmmm.
Ashamed of my councilman said…
"are considered friends"?

I think you're using the wrong tense.

This is like Daschle announcing for Johnson's seat while he's still in the hospital.

It's a vile self-indulgent betrayal.
John R said…
It has everything to do with campaign finance reform. How can one person pump in tens of thousands of dollars into a political campaign like this? This means Hamilton is likely setting up a Political Action Committee to pump what ever it takes to keep his puppet in office. But Jim Shaw is more than a puppet. He is a corrupt mayor---willing to do anything to stay in power.
Anonymous said…
Where's the Rapid City Journal on this story????
Anonymous said…
Did the Weekly attempt to talk to Shaw? Hamilton? Nice gossipy article but bad journalism.
Anonymous said…
Anonymous 9:11

Shaw's comments are in the article.
Anonymous said…
9:07 AM--very good question. The RCJ looks like they laid an egg. If Harlan wasn't so busy repeating the latest liberal/Daily Kos talking point on Mt. Blogmore maybe some of these stories would get covered.
Anonymous said…
Giving Schumacher 35k to run a campaign is a waste of money. His political skills are pretty much limited to putting up campaign signs and peddling so-called influence at the RCJ. He is clueless when it comes to raising money and other than making sure he gets paid, has a total lack of creativity in spending campaign dollars. Shaw's sugar daddy's plan here is simply to deprive Koiker of Schumacher's counsel. He did Koiker a favor.
VJ said…
All politics comes with a price!

PP: “So when someone we thought had those qualities shows that they can be purchased - they can be bought and sold as chattel - it shocks the sensibilities.” I guess PP hasn’t been involved in politics that much, especially at the National level. Probably never heard of “K Street” where everyone was bought and sold!

President Truman: "If you want a friend in Washington (politics), then buy a dog."

“I love treason but hate a traitor”. (Julius Caesar)

“Et tu, Brute”! (Julius Caesar)

9:07: “Where's the Rapid City Journal on this story????” Well, the Journal was busy! They were out on an undercover cigarette sting! They are doing a story on all the South Dakota Criminals that cross the State border to buy cigarettes, gas and groceries in order to avoid paying taxes to South Dakota! I hear that pictures of these “border criminals” will be posted on the Journal web page and that the pictures may even appear in the post office next to those FBI most wanted posters! Give the Rapid City Journal credit! They were out covering a big story! Secure our borders! Our own people are trying to destroy us! All politics comes with a price. “Et tu, Brute”
Anonymous said…
This makes Jim Shaw's behavior at the Iowa State Fair look honorable. Shame on Shaw for doing this.
Anonymous said…
It's always amazing to notice how much more contempt we seem to have for people who take the money as opposed to the people who offer it.

What's up with that?

You would think that after Ellie Schwiezow's bad experience, Hamilton money would be radioactive.

Guess not.
Anonymous said…
As for a conflict of interest , I don't think that Schumacher would have an "indirect pecuniary interest" conflict unless what they were voting on would benefit Shaw monetarily. An interesting question does arise as to whether there is an "indirect personal interest" conflict though. It could be telling if Schumacher start voting with Shaw. Will his "judgment... be affected because of membership in some organization and a desire to help that organization further its policies"? Seems to me if that happens, we're moving past a conflict of interest and into dangerous vote-buying territory.
Anonymous said…
Wouldn't that same sort of "conflict of interest" be even more present with Sen. Brock Greenfield? He is the Executive Director of Right to Life, correct? Or do we just want to ignore it in his situation?
Anonymous said…
1:16: ..."into dangerous vote-buying territory."

Hamilton moved into that territory when he
moved to South Dakota.

Just ask him. He won't deny it.
Anonymous said…
Who on the Council has received money from Hamilton?
Anonymous said…
1:38 - you're comparing apples and oranges.

Brock is in the legislature, which has a different set of laws. That, and he does not (and I believe is prohibited) from lobbying during session.

A city council is a quasi-judicial entity, whereas the legislature is not.
Anonymous said…
Anon 1:51

What? I'm sure Greenfield lobbies all the time during session for his issues. All the senators and reps do. They advocate their positions all the time, both on and off the record. There's nothing wrong with that, that's their job.
Anonymous said…
Schumacher is a joke. Kooiker should only be so lucky that the big guy would wobble away real fast.
walter said…
9:07.... 9:57 has got it right, vj, too. Harlan is just a local drive-by. And this time he drove by so fast he missed the story. hahahaha... What a sorry excuse for a "reporter!"
Anonymous said…
The following quote from Schumacher is troubling:

“People are trying to make me out to be a traitor or a Judas, but tomorrow is guaranteed for no one,” Schumacher said. “My obligation is to my family.

This could be a line right out of the movie "THE GOD FATHER" I could justify robbing a bank using that line of thinking. He makes it sound like betrayal is OK if it is in the name of "family". Schumacher missed the boat on "family values" I would bet his family is ashamed of him. If Shaw had any values, he would dis-associate his campaign from this disaster.
Pierre observer said…
This is an interesting story--HB 1048 will soon criminalize what is happening in this situation. I hope Rapid City voters don't stand for this, but then again, they have elected Shaw several times and will likely elect him again. Incumbents have a huge advantage. Why doesn't Shaw just run on his accomplishments? Why does he need to take a step like this?
Anonymous said…
4:54 AM -- Absolutely amazing! You so completely miss the point, I pity you. First, nothing is illegal in this. You compared apples to oranges. Second, you are actually trying to make the argument that Schumacher should put Kooiker's personal interests ahead of his own family. That is seems typical of quite a few people these days and is really a shame.
Anonymous said…
11;19 am

I missed nothing, I did not say it was illegal, I said you could use the same reasoning. Learn to read.
Anonymous said…
I did read and you compared it to an illegal act. That seemed to be your implication, which is a comparison of apples and oranges.
Anonymous said…
Calling betrayal, taking care of your family, isnt even apples and oranges, its worse.
Anonymous said…
I volunteer as a coach for a childrens sports team. I guess, according to Schumacher, it would be ok to switch teams, for money, right before the playoffs, because I was taking care of my family ?

If his family was neglected and starving prior to this offer by Hamilton, I could understand a little bit. Does anybody know if the Schumacher family was poor, neglected and starving ? if so, give the guy a break, if not, he's a Judas.
Anonymous said…
I am constantly amazed that someone can actually make the argument that Schumacher is the one who should have to sacrifice for Kooiker's ambitions. If you read the article, Schumacher clearly made the decision to put his family first. Things like this happen in business all the time. Partnerships dissolve for family reasons. People leave jobs for better opportunities. They are putting their families first, and there isn't a crime in that. In fact, to make it out that way might be the crime.
Anonymous said…
I noticed that the RC Weekly article did not mention the Steve Rolinger campaign, didnt Schumacher loose that election ? I wonder how many others he lost ?
Anonymous said…
Schumacher sold out to the highest bidder. It's that simple.

There are things more important than money, like integrity, which is clear that Schumacher has none.

I'm not sure who I should be more disgusted with, Schumacher or Shaw for trying to buy off a critic.
Anonymous said…
So, let's ask this question. When Adam Vinatieri left the New England Patriots, was he a traitor? Did he sell out? They were the club that gave a chance to a kicker from the NCC. He was there for many years and made many friends. Did he stab them in the back, or was he doing what was best for him and his family?
Anonymous said…
Did he leave right before the playoffs or after the season was over ?
Anonymous said…
It is important not to lose sight of the real issue here. The pornmeister Hamilton has figured RC politics out, its all for sale. Ellie, Shaw both sold out to the master of sleeze, Hamilton. I bet he laughs all the way back to New York in his private jet. Guess what-we will let him get away with it again.
Anonymous said…
Business is business. People gotta do what they gotta do. The criticism sounds like a vendetta to me. (P.S. I do not know any of the principals in this debate.)
Anonymous said…
Anon 4:40. Your analogy is flawed. Petitions couldn't be circulated until just this past Thursday. The season is only beginning my friend.
Anonymous said…
WRONG ANON 5;45

1) The NFL has very, very strict rules about this very thing, players, coaches, etc are prohibited from even talking to another team without permission. Vinateri was at or in the legal window to change teams.

2) The season started before last July when Schumacher started helping Kooiker.

3) Your anaolgy is flawed, Schumacher would not be a player he would be the coach and Kooiker would be the team. The Shaw team bribed the Kooiker team coach to change teams, after seeing the playbook and plans for the Kooiker team. My guess is the NFL wouldnt allow anything close to this scenario to happen in the NFL. BECAUSE, THEY TAKE CARE OF THEIR FAMILY !!
Anonymous said…
Anon 4:43
You sound like Tony Soprano.
Anonymous said…
So why all the focus on Schumacher? The real focus should be on Shaw's campaign tactics.
Anonymous said…
what a bunch of frign pussies on this blog.

no wonder the 2/3 majority gop in south dakota is on life support.

politics is a contact sport and if you don't like tough shit.

The guy did what politicos do every day in this business. shut and move out.
Anonymous said…
hey anon 9:30

call schumacher, he could use a friend now.
Anonymous said…
Bloggin is a tough sport, cant take the heat? stay out
Anonymous said…
I think we need to put a stop to all of this negative talking about everybody. We should just be positive. Thank you very much. Does anybody know the blog on the people on running for city counsil. I heard Deb Hadcock is running for city counsil in Ward 2. I think she is very good at what she does. She promises that she will do things and she does those things. Please don't bad mouth people. We all should be happy with the people on our city
Brenda34 said…
What place better to talk about the counsil then this place, becuase Schumacher and Shaw are both on the counsil. So why not discuss things on here about the counsil.
Talking about Deb Hadcock in the previous Blog. Yes she is running and she is an outstanding City Counsil Member. She has done so much for this city. She has raised private donations for the Christmas Lights and the Trolleys.
She makes a difference in everything she does, she always seems to find solutions on things for the city. The more she accomplishes the more people have to talk about her. She could have stayed on the on the one side of the fence, but she went through the gate and got things done and made them a success. Well done Deb. She also willing to put her hands to plpw, when they got the big star on the watertower, she was willing to climb up the water tower to help put it up. Question for the people that put people down. What have you done for our city lately except cut down the people that have made a difference in our city. Deb Hadcock has made a real difference in the city in the 2 years she has been on the city counsil. She is willing to get her hands dirty and work hard for her constiuents and also for the entire city of Rapid City.
I would like to give her a pat on the back and a round of applause for everything that she has done. GOOD JOB DEB HADCOCK
Anonymous said…
Anon 11:36

The previous post is telling "Hadcock is willing to get her hands dirty".

yup.
Brenda34 said…
Anon: I just want to say the reason I was saying Deb Hadcock is willing to get her hands dirty, is not degrading, she helps with the Beautification of her ward, and she is one of the volunteers that help with those areas. She does things that way. So please don't bad mouth anybody.
Anonymous said…
Why would Jim Shaw allow this to happen?
Anonymous said…
Mike Schumacher is now Mike Sam-mocker.
foolsball fan said…
Who says you don't learn anything by reading the blogs??? I didn't know Adam Vinatieri was ELECTED to play for the New England Patriots!!! Good thing for the Colts he put his family first!!!
Anonymous said…
I feel that the reason Schumacher dosen't go on the out of town trips because it would cost the tax payers twice as much for airline tickets. He dosen't go anywhere without Kookier. Because they share the same bed.
Anonymous said…
I saw in the paper in Deb Hadcock was running for re-election. I am happy that she is running. She is an extradionary indivual. She has been doing infrostructure for Rapid City. There are many things that she has done. She finds solutions and she gets things done. She is willing to initiate a cleanup for Roosevelt Park. Because a park is place to have fun with your family. She is willing to make sure that the Water in Rapid City is clean and pure. We want to have safe drinking and water to wash our clothes in don't we. Thanks Deb for running for re-election.
Brenda34 said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said…
I was just curious is Schumacher running for re-election, and also Mayor Shaw with his re-election. I am just curious, is somebody running against him. I would like to know.
Anonymous said…
Yes, I believe Deb Hadcock she gets done, Willing to help anybody she can with what is going on in her ward or Rapid City itself. She is helping make Roosevelt Park look nice and she is a very dedicated council alderperson. Deb also finds solutions to help each and everybody out. She is also helping the water is safe to drink in Rapid City. Thanks Deb for all you do.
Brenda34 said…
Deb Hadcock is running for her second term on City Counsil. I think she deserves all the people in Ward 2 to vote for her. I know she is a very good representation in Ward 2. She does so much for our city not just her ward. She got private donations for the Christmas Lights, and as well as the the New Trolley's. We need more people like her. She has implemented Ward 2 Task Force, and as well as Neighborhood watch programs for her ward. She as a Local Business Owner does beautification for her ward. Her business looks very good on the outside. If you have ever been in the business she did a very good job decorating it as well. That is not the point but I want to tell you vote for Deb Hadcock in WARD 2.
Anonymous said…
I agree with Brenda34 that we should re-elect for Deb Hadcock for Ward 2 city council. Brenda council is spelled with a c not an s. I appreciate you standing up for what Deb has done. Because she has done so much for our city of Rapid City. She dosen't do it just for her consituents I know I have spelled it wrong. She does it for the entire city. Well done Ms. Hadcock. She is a very smart and too point lady. She looks for the solutions and gets things done. Thanks Deb for everything that you do and have done for Rapid City. I really appreciate it when you helped Rick Livesey with changing the day of Council meetings when they land on a federal holiday. You are awesome.
Anonymous said…
I read in a letter to the Editor by Mayor Shaw. Mike is not helping him with his campaign. I was so happy to hear that. I also hear that there is 4 candidates that are running for mayor. Tom Johnson and Sam Kookier are 2 of them. Is there anyone running for Ward 2 and 3 I just curious. If anybody knows anything can you blog and let us know. I hear Bill Okerepie and Deb Haddcock are the only ones that turned in petitions for those two wards. We have one week left to see if. I guess we will just have to wait and see. Good luck to all those that are running.
Anonymous said…
I heard Steve Laranti is running in Ward 2. I heard he is good buddies with Sam Kookier. Why would he be running against an Alderwomen that has done things in her ward, and people that appreciate in what she has done in her ward. He has no idea in what he is getting himself into. He won't be able to catch up with Deb Hadcock. He will be out of breath by the time he catches up with her.
Anonymous said…
I am so happy that Deb Hadcock is running for city council for ward 2. She has done so much for her ward and not just for her ward but the entire city. Thanks Deb for believing in Rapid City. You have done so much for our city. I can't wait till we clean up Rapid City and we owe it all to your help. This will be the cleanest city I have ever lived in because of people like you Deb. I hope you know how much I appreciate you in what you have done.
Anonymous said…
I just want people to know how nice of a person Deb Hadcock is. She helps people when they need help. She listens to you if you need to talk and is honest when you don't want to hear the truth. The truth does hurt, but we can take it from friends, and I can say that Deb Hadcock is a friend of mine. Thank you Deb for being my friend and being honest with me. I appreciate you very much. Sometimes it is hard to handle the truth but I will accept from friends like Deb. If you don't know Deb get to know her. She owns a downtown business she cares for a lot of people.

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