Comedian Bill Maher is coming to South Dakota in September. Will he be raising money for the South Dakota Democratic Party or not?
KDLT says yes:
Liberal comedian Bill Maher’s first visit to South Dakota will be a part of a fundraiser for the state’s Democratic Party in Sioux Falls in September.
Party interim Executive Director Zach Nistler said Saturday that Maher will appear at the Washington Pavilion in Sioux Falls on Sept. 13.
He says the comedian will have a reception before the show for the party and has set aside a block of tickets for the party to use as a fundraiser [“Bill Maher Coming to SD as Part of Dem Fundraiser,” KDLT, 2015.04.18].
That Sioux Falls paper said the same thing yesterday but, as Mr. Powers notes, has pulled the story from its website.
KELO-TV says no, Maher is just doing a public performance:
Political commentator, comedian, and television show host Bill Maher will be stopping in Sioux Falls this fall for a stand-up comedy performance.
Maher will be performing at the Washington Pavilion September 13 this year. Tickets run for $85, $78, $68, $55, and $20….
This article has been revised to reflect the following correction:
Bill Maher is not directly affiliated with any Democratic Party fundraiser as an earlier version of this story suggested. His performance is open to the public [“Comedian Bill Maher to Perform at Washington Pavilion,” KELO-TV, 2015.04.18].
The South Dakota Democratic Party offers no confirmation online. The party’s Twitter and Facebook pages are silent on Maher. BillMaher.com doesn’t even list the September 13 Washington Pavilion gig (between Durham, NC, on August 9, Fort Wayne, IN, September 19, and Fargo September 20)… though his Web people may just be too busy promoting April 20 as National Weed Day to handle other updates to Maher’s online presence. (Possibly related: pot use is associated with lower work commitment.)
If Maher and the SDDP are working on a fundraiser, will it help or hurt the Democrats? Certainly the GOP spinnerazzi will have fun trying to tie South Dakota Democrats to Maher’s most controversial jokes and statements. But Maher won’t be on the ballot. If he’s doing anything for South Dakota Democrats, he’ll just be lending his star power to draw donors out for a night. And if his visit to South Dakota gives him a chance to talk to some of our Democratic leaders, he may see that South Dakota could use the help of some of his friends back home to beat back the wingnuttery he properly skewers on TV.
Now if we can just get Al Franken and Hillary Clinton to come fundraise for us….