Rosenthal on the Herseth Race

SDWC classes are slowly getting back up to speed after the christmas holidays, as students register for Spring semester classes... okay, the college comparisons are a little lame.

I'm back from the holiday, and I did get a cool Swiss-Tech USB drive/pliers little tool on a keyring from Santa.

Otherwise the only thing politically interesting that caught my eye enough to write about was that Joel Rosenthal over at SD Straight talk is lamenting once again that the SD GOP does not have a candidate to take on Stephanie Herseth.

As a former State GOP Chairman, Joel offers his advice. Although, I don't know if I'd concur with all of his choices. He's pushing Carol Pitts and Dave Knudson whom I'm fairly ambivalent on. I don't know that they've faced really tough races, so I can't say whether or not I had an opinion that they'd be able to campaign at the level that would be required.

As far as I'm concerned, It's not so much about the person, as much as their ability to wage the type of race that needs to be waged.

He also mentioned Ron Williamson. My only comment was that in the GOP special convention for the seat now held by Herseth, if my memory is correct, Ron came in fourth. I can't point too many fingers since my guy only won the first ballot, and eventually came in second.

And again, I don't know that Ron would fire up the kind of base you'd need to wage the kind of campaign to knock off Herseth.

Now, Joel also brings up Jim Hagen, former Chief of Staff for Governor Janklow and current Tourism and State Development Director as someone who he views as a potential contender. Actually, this is the one suggestion that Joel makes that I find somewhat intriguing.

Jim managed Janklow's congressional run, so he knows how to run against Herseth. And he is well spoken. And his connections with SD politics and industry give him access to the people with big checkbooks to finance such a race. Jim might be the kind of candidate who could give her a serious run.

But it remains to be seen who the state party's recruitments efforts will bring into this thing. Only time and campaign announcements will tell.


Anonymous said…
None of the mentioned candidates could even fire up the GOP political base. Christians and other conservatives would most likely vote for Stephanie. I know I would and I consider myself a conservative with a capital C.
Anonymous said…
Rosenthal is extremely biased. Dave Knutson, Jim Hagen, Ron Williamson, and Carol Pitts are all old Janklow cronies. In addition, Rosenthal supported and worked for Janklow as the SD GOP Chairman for years.

Republicans need to open up their eyes. Rather than looking ahead, the Republican Party continues to look in the past. Larry Diedrich was not the best candidate for the Special Election, but the GOP delegates were not willing to look towards the future. We need to start grooming our young candidates and start moving forward, not backwards. Look at the facts: bright, young, energetic, articulate, newcomers are the ones who get elected to the U.S. House or Representatives (Thune, Pressler, McGovern, Daschle, Herseth).

Let's allow the old, washed-up, political dinosaurs to rest in peace.
Anonymous said…
As you've stated in a previous post, Joel surprisingly forgot one potential contender against Herseth. That person is Jarrod Johnson. He's a young, bright, and charismatic candidate who can match Herseth on the issues.
Reifelman said…
I would like to see someone give Billie Jo Waara more of a push. She is the GOP's answer to Stephanie. This might not be the right time for her, but she definitely has a future in this state.
PP said…
Oooo. She's not someone who immediately comes to mind, since she's left the political arena for the bureaucracy - but I'd agree 100%.

Good Call Reifelman.

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