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Evans Ends Independent Bid for U.S. Senate

Kurt Evans is out of the U.S. Senate campaign. In a comment to this blog on Sunday, Evans says simply that he’s calling off the Independent bid that he announced last winter.

Of course, in the eyes of the Federal Election Commission, the Evans campaign never existed. The FEC database shows no filings for Evans for Senate.

So much for my plan to use Evans as a conservative wedge to erode John Thune’s base and offer the Democratic candidate a path to victory. (That’s a triple mixed metaphor, right? Which image do you prefer: wedge, sandpaper, or shovel?) Along that line, we Dems could try to convince Stace Nelson to enter the race as a Howie-style Independent or maybe a Libertarian standard-bearer, but Nelson appears to have allowed his campaign website to lapse. Alas! If we Dems want to split the Republican base, it looks like we’ll have to do it ourselves.

The best ground on which Democrats might take that tack is Evans’s concern about privacy and civil liberties. If we can convince Libertarians and principled conservatives that John Thune’s support for an unchecked military-police state poses a greater threat to their practical liberty than the humane social policy of the Democratic Party, we just might pull some votes from that camp.

But that’s marginal gain, to be prioritized behind straight-up Democratic voter re-registration!


  1. larry kurtz 2015-10-19 07:08

    Kurt, if you announce an unaffiliated bid for US House I will support it.

  2. 12 2015-10-19 07:43

    Pull votes from Thune… For whom? Did I miss something? Is there somebody out there who’s announced candidacy who has amassed a war chest that can compete with John Thune’s almost $12,000,000 in the bank right now?

  3. Disgusted Dakotan 2015-10-19 09:32

    That $12 Million is evidence Thune doesn’t represent South Dakota, he represents K-street in DC.

    Evans is/was a joke. No way South Dakotans vote for any clown who punches his mother.

    All hat, no cattle.

  4. Kurt Evans 2015-10-19 09:36

    “Disgusted Dakotan” wrote:
    >“Evans is/was a joke. No way South Dakotans vote for any clown who punches his mother.”

    I’ve never punched my mother.

  5. Jeff Endrizzi 2015-10-19 10:27

    CH, do you really think there’s a Republican vote to split in the first place? Nelson and his few followers made a lot of noise prior to the 2014 Senate primary, but in the end limped to the finish. Howie jumping in? Even less support. The reality is the far left and the far right each have passionate believers, but nowhere near enough to change anything. Most of us are more toward the center, and for some reason, we’re belittled for that. Candidates earn votes by proving they are consistent, and we know what we’re getting.

  6. Disgusted Dakotan 2015-10-19 10:35

    @Kurt Evans What’s the matter tough guy? You only man enough to stalk DWU female basketball players and assault little old ladies?

    All hat, no cattle..

  7. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-10-19 10:37

    12, you are correct: no Democrat has announced yet. But Dems will have a candidate against Thune.

    DD, are you sure you want to cite anything on DWC as authoritative? Wouldn’t you rather spend your time gearing up for your own campaign? You recognize one big problem with Thune: his big money shows he’s gone Washington at least as much as he claimed Daschle had in 2004. Jump in! Fight for South Dakota! Announce your candidacy (and do it here on the very friendly Dakota Free Press!).

  8. Kurt Evans 2015-10-19 11:16

    “Disgusted Dakotan” wrote:
    >“How would you prefer we quantify and describe your professed assault and battery of your mother?”

    After reading the law, I pleaded not guilty. Mom never supported the criminal complaint, and the prosecutor dismissed it before it went to trial.

    >“You only man enough to stalk DWU female basketball players … ?”

    I’ve never stalked anyone:

  9. Disgusted Dakotan 2015-10-19 11:16

    ..and yet, Jeff Endrezzi.. your moderate “Republican” candidates all run as actual conservative Republicans (your “far right”) to get elected.

    Your moderates are responsible for the loss of GOP national prominence after 2003. Conservatives fighting AGAINST your squishy moderates are what got the GOP majority’s in Congress last year.

  10. larry kurtz 2015-10-19 11:25

    Jeff Endrizzi is an obese earth hater without a clue except where his next casserole is coming from.

  11. larry kurtz 2015-10-19 11:30

    People who believe abortion is murder, that clean coal exists and who deny the anthropocene are not centrists.

  12. leslie 2015-10-19 12:33

    I know who Evans is. DD who are you? Cowboy up buddy

  13. jerry 2015-10-19 13:07

    I shall miss Mr. Evans as a candidate. I think that having more representation is what democracy needs, not less. While the two party system has worked in the past, what we are seeing in Washington is that the looser’s can control the direction of the government by threatening to blow the place up. That is not democracy. While it is okay to speak to Tehran John about privacy matters, that to me does not mean much as that train left the station in 2000 when Bush II was appointed by the Supreme Court. I would ask whomever challenges Tehran John to ask him why he supports the elimination of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security as they are now the hostages he, as a senate leader, want to eliminate. Those three items seem to resonate more to the good people of South Dakota more than the privacy they willing gave up a decade and half ago.

  14. Don Coyote 2015-10-19 13:08

    I’m shocked, shocked to hear of this turn of events. /s Evans is the Harold Stassen of South Dakota politics. To be fair, Stassen actually won some of his campaigns while Evans wears his gadfly’s cloak and feigns that he is a candidate with no more of a chance than a snowball in hell.

  15. Roger Cornelius 2015-10-19 13:34

    There is another dynamic here that could very much affect John Thune’s fate.
    Should Donald Trump’s tea party campaign last until our June primary, there will be plenty of opportunity for republicans to start going to war against each other, just as they are doing in trying to elect a House Speaker.
    At this point I would love nothing more than to see a Howie or Stace Nelson campaign that could latch on to the coattails of Donald Trump.
    My question is, will the South Dakota republican party become as fractionalized as the nation’s if Trump makes a presence?

  16. Kris 2015-10-19 15:19

    we should start a green party in SD. Some friends are workin on it. Green party is only way to go. all else corrupt

  17. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-10-19 17:21

    Jeff, I’ll admit, you Republicans do seem hard to split lately. I had high hopes for the Nelson campaign, but Team Nelson didn’t muster the money or organization necessary to turn dissatisfaction and rebellious rhetoric into better than a teen percentage of the GOP primary electorate. Likewise Howie (in 2010 race for Governor and 2014 run for Senate): some good points, but no ability to gain traction or change the race.

    Maybe I’ve been too hopeful. Maybe the GOP voters really are getting what they want: lip service to small-government principles, then realpolitik serving the power interests of certain corporate favorites.

    But I’ve got to believe the right candidate could bring those folks around. Nelson, Howie, and Evans aren’t those candidates. I don’t think even Donald Trump is that candidate.

    Hmmm… maybe I need to convert back to Libertarian-Republican and give it a shot. ;-)

  18. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-10-19 17:22

    Good grief: I think Evans catches as much hell when he ends a campaign as when he sticks in win. Sometimes you can’t win for trying… or not trying.

  19. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-10-19 17:23

    Roger, do you think Donald Trump could gain any traction in South Dakota? Wouldn’t we revolt under a rich New York guy?

  20. larry kurtz 2015-10-19 17:38

    yer a god, cah.

  21. Bob Newland 2015-10-19 20:44

    Kurt Evans is likely to be as well known for entering, then dropping out of, electoral campaigns as he is for anything in life. I will always enjoy him for having taken some 3000 votes from John Thune in 2002 in a three-way race for US House against Tim Johnson. Johnson won by about 500 votes. This was after Evans announced he was dropping out of the race, even though the ballots had been printed.

    Tim Johnson, some may remember, was an obscure SoDak Representative in the US House whose most impressive victory may have been the federal mandate to install the “V” (for violence) -chip in televisions, which, I guess, was supposed to allow parents to moderate the violence their kids got to watch on the tube.

    Really, it was a big deal about 20 years ago, and is something no one gives a thought to anymore. Did Tim do anything more significant than that during his tenure? Well, I guess he probably forestalled the even greater inanity of folks like Mike Rounds and Kristi Noem. That’s not something to sneeze at, I guess.

    Now, we look back with tears of nostalgia as we remember politicians who were, at worst, ineffective.

  22. Kurt Evans 2015-10-19 21:48

    Bob wrote:
    >“Kurt Evans is likely to be as well known for entering, then dropping out of, electoral campaigns as he is for anything in life. I will always enjoy him for having taken some 3000 votes from John Thune in 2002 in a three-way race for US House against Tim Johnson.”

    I’ll never understand why people who are even less impressed with Thune than I am continue to recite his talking points about the 2002 election. To get a reasonably accurate explanation of what really happened, go here:

    And here:

    To get the Thune/Powers scapegoating spin, go here:

    To get my partial rebuttal to Thune’s version of events, go here:

    >“Johnson won by about 500 votes. This was after Evans announced he was dropping out of the race, even though the ballots had been printed.”

    A technical point of clarification is that I didn’t consider my endorsement of Thune to be the equivalent of dropping out of the race. I still thought of myself as a candidate, still recognized the right of others to campaign and vote for me, and (contrary to widespread media reports) wouldn’t have removed my name from the ballot even if I could have.

  23. Les 2015-10-19 23:50

    Don’t we all agree no action is better than most action by our elected, Bob? Kloucek for example. Miss his good ol boy entertaining style and the fact he didn’t contribute to the 4000 plus bills submitted in his 20 year tenure.

    Evans? Don’t agree with a bunch but, I can agree with Kurt more than with most elected at present.

  24. Kris 2015-10-20 05:47

    democrat and republican parties are gonna go to the old folks home. parties like the greens are the future. we need this in sd.

    don’t support the old corrupt big money do nothins

  25. Ken Santema 2015-10-20 09:11

    If someone in SD is trying to get the Green Party going in SD that would be great. A while back I heard a rumor the Green Party was going to try gaining ballot access in SD, but so far I haven’t seen the petition.

  26. larry kurtz 2015-10-20 09:14

    The only way additional political parties will ever build footing in the US is to start at the lowest levels of government like school boards, mayors, city councils or county commissions.

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