Thune on Autopilot: Won’t Disown Trump, Offers No Insight on Presidential Campaign

Senator John Thune shows the effects of TV news.
Senator John Thune shows the effects of TV news. Screen cap from KELO-TV, 2016.04.17.

KELO-TV commits another headline error, saying that Senator John Thune “weighs in” on the 2016 Presidential race.

“Weighing in” means you step on the scale and make the numbers spin. Senator Thune “weighs in” with all the heft of a feather:

“The only thing that is certain is it’s uncertain,” Thune said.

The uncertainty could put South Dakota in a unique position on June 7.

“By then, normally the nominees are decided, but this year, it’s wide open enough that South Dakota may actually have a voice in all of this,” Thune said [Kelli Volk, “Thune Weighs in on 2016 Presidential Campaign,” KELO-TV, 2016.04.17].

Really? Guy’s been in Washington for twenty years and in politics for over thirty, and that’s the best he can say? Why turn on the mic?

Thune still won’t cowboy up and disown Donald Trump:

When asked about who he’s supporting in the race, the senator says he’s keeping his options open, opting out of backing a candidate at this point.

“I’m interested in seeing what the voters of South Dakota decide when the time comes, so I’ll follow their wishes,” Thune said [Volk, 2016.04.17].

Sure, says Thune to South Dakota, if you want racism and fascism, I’m with you. That’s not leadership; that’s a man with no compass.

Senator Thune natters on as if on post-game interview autopilot: “could see an open convention… been a lot of concerns about whether or not the party can come together when it’s all said and done, but I believe that will happen….” There’s no analysis there, no unique Capitol insight, not one word that makes South Dakotans think, Boy, this guy knows a truckload about politics and government! Good thing we’ve got him in charge!

Good grief, KELO: I know you think putting John’s pretty face on your screen gets you ratings and scores brownie points with the powers that be in case you seek comment on a real story, but if you really want to educate viewers about the political process, you’d do better to skip Senator Thune’s drivel and share the insights of the South Dakota blogosphere with your viewers on a daily basis.

23 Responses to Thune on Autopilot: Won’t Disown Trump, Offers No Insight on Presidential Campaign

  1. “Very rarely does a political convention have much activity associated with it that actually has any kind of decision on who the nominee will be, but this year that could be true.”

    Sen. Thune on KELO


  2. mike from iowa

    Thune on Autopilot: Won’t Disown Trump, Offers No Insight on Presidential Campaign

    And you were expecting……..?

  3. mike from iowa

    Kelo trying to size Marlboro Barbie’s head for potential Rushmore slot? The camera must have been smoking peyote for that photo.

  4. mike from iowa

    “I’m interested in seeing what the voters of South Dakota decide when the time comes, so I’ll follow their wishes,

    M B will decide who to support after the election when he sees how South Dakotans voted. Brilliant statesmanship!

  5. Autopilot? Of course! When was the last time anyone from the SD delegation said anything that wasn’t handed to them by the Republican talking points committee? Yes, Thune goes off script ever now and then, but he actually sounds worse than George W. when he does! So proud!

  6. Good ole empty suit Thune. Just more of the same. Nothingness.

  7. Donald Pay

    I wouldn’t blame Thune for the bad interview. If you ask softball questions and don’t follow up and demand specifics, you just let the politicians skate. Thune is doing what Thune does best: say nothing. He’s had a lifetime of practice, and he’s good at it. The problem is the “journalists” allow him to get away with it.

  8. This Thune topic needs a music video. Let me see…. Ah here we go… The Shadows “Apache” 1969. Just swing to the beat and read the comments.

  9. Cory, you are spot on about this interview. What a waste of air space by KELO. Poor Thune can’t really say anything of substance without Mitch McConnel prompting him. By the way, Thune’s face isn’t all that pretty. I wonder if Thune had his buddy, Keith Moore, with him in the studio?

  10. Charlene Lund

    My thoughts exactly about Thune’s interview – a real lightweight interview – but then have never heard him weigh in on much. Pretty typical Sunday night KELO news.

  11. Douglas Wiken

    Donald Pay hits a couple nails on the head. Softball questions are a waste of time for everybody. But accusatory questioning with the interviewer trying to convert a mole hole into a mountain also get tiring. I suspect broad ignorance on the part of much of the press is the reason middle-ground sensible questions that expand knowledge are too seldom asked.

  12. bearcreekbat

    Dana’s comment “Just more of the same. Nothingness,” reminds me of my favorite French philosophical masterpiece. The title of John Paul Sartre’s treatise, “Being and Nothingness” easily could be appropriated for the title of a John Thune biography.

  13. mike from iowa

    I think not, therefore, I am not.

    BCB-Pastor Deb thanks you kindly for your warm compliment, yesterday.

  14. bearcreekbat

    mfi – Cool! Say hi to the Pastor and encourage her to bring her wisdom and compassion back to DFP.

    Here’s another likely Thuneism:

    “I tell you everything that is really nothing, and nothing of what is everything, do not be fooled by what I am saying. Please listen carefully and try to hear what I am not saying.” ~Charles C. Finn

  15. the photo op kid rolls into town with big answers that again will be lip service.

  16. owen reitzel

    John Thune has never “weighed” in on anything. He waits to see which way the political winds blow and go to the view he thinks South Dakotan’s want to hear. Sadly he plays it well and Democrats seemed to be afraid to really challenge him on any of the issues.
    He lets the Dakota War Toilet be his outlet and like has been mentioned hear nothing but softball questions from the South Dakota media.
    His so-called town hall meetings are nothing more then pep rallies.
    Time to send him packing.

  17. Mike Kokenge

    Right now SD republican are polling in favor of cruz. If the polls were in favor of trump, thune might have thrown his weight at Cruz. After all, the same dark money given republican politicians and Cruz, is same dark money thune draws from.

  18. My question is, why does SD keep voting the same people in time after time after time ???

  19. Thune is an empty seat. There is a good chance the GOP candidate will be decided long before our primary and pretending otherwise is simply putting one’s head in the sand. Thune as osterich?

  20. It is interesting to me that Thune has several appearances on local tv after a long drought of face time. He’s using his job to get press time, which is a soft and cheap way to get exposure about the good things he does for SD. Must be an election year for him.

  21. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) dismissed a poll showing a majority of voters support action on President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court pick. Numbers, schmumbers. (Getty Images) 4.19.16

  22. barry freed


    “Take what is between the lines literally”

    Bob Dobbs, Church of the Subgenius

  23. Agreed, lightweight stuff. Why can’t KELO have Angela Kennecke sit Thune down and ask him hard questions, stuff with real policy substance?