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Williams Continues Moral Drumbeat Against Trumpist Thune

Jay Williams at Gayville Ice Cream Social, photo from campaign Twitter, 2016.08.09.
Jay Williams at Gayville Ice Cream Social, photo from campaign Twitter, 2016.08.09.

Jay Williams recognizes that neither Donald Trump nor his dogged endorser Senator John Thune represent South Dakota values. The Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate issued three statements this week that show the failure of Thune’s moral compass.

First, Williams said his opponent has a moral obligation to repudiate Trump’s assassination-hinting outrage:

Trump’s comments remind me of Sarah Palin in 2011 when she said “Don’t retreat! Instead – RELOAD!”  Shortly after, a gunman fired several shots at a political rally wounding Gabby Gifford and killing six others. Trump’s comments are actually dangerous. This is not the first time he has incited violence during his rallies and this latest example, if said by an ordinary citizen would land him in jail. Unlike Hillary Clinton who has been accused, investigated and exonerated, Trump actually appears to have broken the law. John Thune should be ashamed of his endorsement of this unfit candidate and at the very least should publicly repudiate this disgraceful and dangerous rhetoric [Jay Williams, press release, 2016.08.10].

Then Williams expressed his support for the USCIS’s termination of South Dakota’s EB-5 status, a punishment warranted by a culture of corruption that one would think a Republican leader like Thune would have done something to stop:

The irony of this is that the State of South Dakota seems eager to obtain federal funds for programs that can be administered by administration officials where there is an opportunity for funds to be funneled to private individuals while the State rejects funds for Medicaid expansion where the funds are targeted to help low income disadvantaged people. While South Dakota voters continue to elect officials based largely on party affiliation rather on merit, it will be difficult to end this “culture of corruption.” Only by holding elected state officials accountable for misdeeds and mismanagement can this “culture of corruption” be ended.

Until the culture of corruption is exposed and eliminated, federal programs that offer business incentives or other federal funds for programs like EB-5 and Gear Up should be suspended. A complete investigation of the administration and oversight of federal funds by State government officials is warranted [Jay Williams, press release, 2016.08.12].

Finally, while Thune criticized the decision of United States Board on Geographic Names to change the name of Harney Peak to Black Elk Peak, Williams welcomed the change:

John Thune said he is surprised and upset by the renaming of Harney Peak in the Black Hills to Black Elk Peak. He says in defies logic and that he is disappointed it happened this year. I am disappointed in Senator Thune’s reaction to this long overdue name change. This is just another area where Senator Thune and I disagree. I am pleased that Black Elk’s name will replace General Harney’s name and that this long standing affront to Native Americans in South Dakota has been rectified [Jay Williams, press release, 2016.08.12].

Williams remains a longshot in every analysis of the Senate race, but at least he is a consistent voice of conscience and moral clarity.


  1. mike from iowa 2016-08-14

    If HRC gets to appoint justices, it means she won the election, Therefore, Drumpf’s assertions that he was calling 2nd Amendment thugs to vote is a blatant, all-out lie.

    If the FEC won’t count votes voted after the election, the system is rigged in HRC’s favor.

  2. Adam 2016-08-14

    It’s a too bad that Jay is still a long shot. I just really like the guy, and what a pleasure it’ll be to vote for him while voting against Loony Thune.

  3. Moses11 2016-08-14

    Where was photo op was he at a basketball game.

  4. jerry 2016-08-14

    Trump does not want to be president, John Thune knows this and supports what Trump’s real agenda is all about. If Trump wanted to be president, where are his offices in South Dakota? Where are the advertisements? It is mid August with nothing that says where he stands on issues, the tee vee stations will close up shop if they do not get some money from these guys. Williams needs to keep hammering him on his white power support for Trump, his white nationalism for this dangerous man. If we fail to totally destroy what Trump and his supporters stand for, we really could see the wheels come off this democracy.

  5. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-08-14

    Jerry, when did McCain and Romney open their offices in our foregone conclusion of a state?

  6. jerry 2016-08-14

    Cory, as far as I remember, they did not, but maybe there may have been some kind in Sioux Falls or Rapid City. It appears Paul Manafort’s claims that Trump is in all 50 states with staffed offices in this interview If you look at what has been spent by Trump’s whatever you call it, you can see that most money has gone into management and not into the get out the vote type of programs that are needed to win. Granted, I do not see Clinton putting any money into South Dakota like was promised either, but I do see Clinton spending money getting her message out in other states. I know you do not go for conspiracy theories, but I wonder what gives. When a dude like David Duke publicly embraces Trump and what he stands for so much so that he is running for the senate, then that tells me there may be something else going on that the smoke is concealing. It was interesting to me that Trump did not disavow Duke or any other white nationalist that has gone on record with support for him either. That is a comfort zone that is very dangerous for democracy. When Thune makes the endorsement and then refuses to change after all he is seeing and hearing, that makes him a willing participant to this as well. Williams needs to keep that drum beating to expose Thune’s support for what it is, racial hatred and a clear and present danger to democracy.

  7. Mark Winegar 2016-08-14

    Jay Williams is a man of ethics and principles. I wish I could say the same for his opponent.

  8. caheidelberger Post author | 2016-08-14

    Anyone against Thune was going to face long odds. Trump could change those odds. Williams needs to keep pressing Thune on Trump.

    Jerry, while Neal Tapio of Watertown says he has been named Trump’s state director, I can’t find reference to an actual brick-and-mortar office or any staff. Let’s keep looking… and when they do open, cue the daily protests!

  9. jerry 2016-08-14

    Cory, this is just another in a long line of interesting things that Thune is clearly aware of. Most of us already know of the business ties with Russia but can they be proven? Oh yeah, they can

    When did John Thune actually sell his soul to our adversary, Mother Russia? Was it worth the 12 million war chest? Can you imagine if this involved a democrat? So much for ethics in the Thune camp, it is nationalism for them.

  10. jerry 2016-08-14

    Here is the way this scheme is working, it kind of looks like Epoch Star and the EB5. Can anyone explain how a campaign works that suddenly stops campaigning to just fund raise like we have seen here in a previous senate race? The big difference is that Trump is supposed to be running a national general election, but is he? Maybe his best buddy Thune might have the answer to this.

  11. Darin Larson 2016-08-14

    Interesting article, jerry. It also mentions Manafort worked for the dictator, Marcos, of the Philippines. So, Manafort is used to working for corrupt dictators and oligarchs so it is no wonder he fits right in with Trump. And the connections to Russia, holy cow!

    Sounds more and more like Thune has endorsed Goldfinger or some other super villain out of a James Bond film. Forget the Manchurian candidate; we have the Siberian candidate.

  12. jerry 2016-08-14

    Goldfinger, indeed. Thune is up to his highwaters in his support. I wonder if he and the Mrs. get to pal around with Rupperts ex bride. Thune is gonna have to decide if he likes South Dakota or Odessa better, the Black Sea or the Missouri for water sports. Who is he pulling for when Putin gets a challenger?

  13. Roger Cornelius 2016-08-14

    For what is worth, Hillary is running regular ads in the Rapid City cable market. haven’t seen any Trump ads.
    She is also seriously out-spending Trump on Olympic advertising, but again Trump doesn’t have to spend much with cable news covering him 100% of the time.
    Granted that Jay Williams is the underdog, but do Democrats need to keep reminding ourselves of that?
    Cory maybe an underdog up in District 3 so does that mean I should no longer support his candidacy?
    South Dakota Democrats need to quit accepting defeat so easily and start fighting back.
    Jay Williams is fighting back using a strong moral code, we need to help him spread the word.
    Like Michele Obama said at the Democratic convention, “we take the high road”.

  14. Adam 2016-08-15

    If John Thune doesn’t speak out soon against any of Trumps wreckless public statements, then he must support them. It’s totally insane to me that Thune agrees with Kim Jung-un and Vladimir Putin on who’s best for America’s White House.

    Thune sits on his ass – riding the coattails of the R next to his name. Meanwhile, Jay Williams is actively, passionately and articulately fighting for the voice of reason – talking to people all over the state, working his tail off.

    Libertarians, Constitutionalists, Green Party, Bernie people, Republicans and everyone else should vote Jay Williams if there is any sanity left in this crazy world.

  15. mike from iowa 2016-08-15

    Someone said yesterday there are no coattails on a strait jacket.

  16. jerry 2016-08-15

    John Thune supports all that Trump says and all of his actions to include the neutering of NATO regarding to responding to Russian aggression and also his complete support for the annexation of Crimea to Russia. Trump wants to declare that Russia can steal all the lost territory back because they are all in business together. All of these are acts that go beyond Neville Chamberlain’s ill fated dealings with the devil to start World War Deuce. As you can tell by the happy hand shakes, Chamberlain, like Thune, is just a boot licker.

  17. Bill Dithmer 2016-08-15

    Trump could care less about SD, but he will loose because Trump only likes, no loves Trump.

    williams will loose because he continues to preach to the choir, thats old ground and he needs votes

    The Blindman

  18. jerry 2016-08-15

    We could all care less for the careless Trump. It is the betrayal of trust that Thune has done with his support for this thug. If it does not matter to Trump, then why does Thune continue the love fest for the Trump Putin ticket?

  19. leslie 2016-08-30

    Williams (and of course Hawks) is our only chance in SD for Daugaard’s immediate expansion of Medicaid. Their election would symbolize a sea change in SD. SD legislative races will likely increase democrat’s influence on the state house and senate.

    ‘Government’s first obligation is to protect rights, not profits. When the Declaration of Independence proclaimed our “unalienable rights” to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” it even put “life” first.

    Health care is a right, not a business.’

  20. leslie 2016-08-30

    that is a big difference between a democrat and a republican

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