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Woster’s Proposed Response to SDDP Demise: Infiltrate SDGOP?

I’ve suggested that the proper response to the South Dakota Democratic Party’s  insolvency is to form a new opposition party, an active, inclusive organization which would not have to throw every dollar it raises for the next year into the black hole of past mistakes.

Kevin Woster suggests the opposite: instead of forming a new party, he urges Dems to join South Dakota’s only effective party, the Republicans, and wrangle for change from within the monolith as a new wing of “progressive Republicans”:

If you want to make a difference in South Dakota politics as a Democrat, register Republican. And you can do that by degrees.

You can register Republican just for primaries, and vote for the candidate or candidates you prefer. Then you’ll be part of an intermittent GOP progressive movement. Like an intermittent stream, if will flow only at certain times of the year, most commonly in the spring, around primary season.

Thousands of intermittent Republicans could change the overall flow of politics, and selection of candidates, in certain legislative districts and perhaps statewide. That matters. And it could matter a lot in some instances.

But the real impact would come if thousands — even tens of thousands — of Democrats actually became Republicans and committed themselves to being progressive members of the party. For most that could simply mean voting their conscience and contributing to candidates that reflect it. But for others it could mean getting active in the party structure at the county level and at the state level, and showing up for state conventions to try to shape or at least influence the platform — and to select nominees for certain general-election races [Kevin Woster, “If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Join ‘Em: Would the Chance to Make a Difference Be Worth Leaving the Democratic Party?” SDPB: On the Other Hand, 2019.09.11].

Woster says sacrificing the Democratic label would be “difficult” to “impossible” for strong liberal Democrats like me because our principles wouldn’t let us adopt the R label. I contend it would be impossible for strong liberal Demcorats like me to adopt Woster’s strategy because the Republicans would see me coming and never let a known liberal into any voting position in the county party or at convention.

Woster’s recommendation is also shaky in the examples he offers of “progressive Republicans”: Billie Sutton, Scott Heidepriem, and David Knudson. Woster says Heidepriem and Knudson “were thoughtful lawmakers who operated with reason and without the sharp-edges of extremism,” and I get the sense he’d say the same words about Sutton. But all three failed to win statewide races. Knudson provides a particularly useful example: He appeared to test Woster’s hypothesis by running as a Republican for Governor and came in third in the GOP primary.

“Progressives” may run into a brick wall running under their true Democratic colors in South Dakota, but we won’t get any further running in Republican primaries. Republican leaders will pull out our old blog posts to alert the faithful, they’ll intensify their opposition to letting independents vote in their primaries, and our real base of Democrats will mostly shrug at participating in a GOP primary and keep tuning out and moving away.

Dr. David Newquist says following Woster’s suggestion of infiltrating the SDGOP would only reinforce the failure of open democracy in South Dakota:

However, his idea is an acknowledgement that what is actually dead in the state is  democratic rule. His advice to the remnants of the Democratic Party is to submit to the conquerers and make their progressive sallies within the single, ruling party, so that they can be controlled and dismissed internally and never heard in public  on a legislative floor.  The South Dakota GOP legislature has a record of punishing dissent within its caucus and will not tolerate even minor differences of opinion [David Newquist, “The Democratic Party Didn’t Die. Democracy Did,” Northern Valley Beacon, 2019.09.15].

Under Newquist’s diagnosis, Woster’s prescription promises no better results than the same-old same-old that Woster deems untenable for responsible progressives:

The alternative for Democrats seems to be more of the same — more self-deluded dreams of election upsets that never come true and continued dominance by the Republican super majority, which seems more and more influenced by an ultra-conservative philosophy.

Down that more-of-the-same road lies the madness or repetitious failure for Democrats. But there’s another road, one that could lead Democrats to a meaningful role in shaping the future of this state.

As Republicans [Woster, 2019.09.11].

Far be it from me to keep trying something that doesn’t work and shows no prospect of working. But abandoning one ineffective plan for another is still a bad plan.

If Newquist is right, then there’s no hope. Move to Minneapolis. Woster at least clings to his belief that sensible change is possible; I’m just not convinced his plan for change will work. Republicans will sniff out Ds in R-clothing as quickly as they’ll sniff out Ds in DFL clothing or any other merely rebranded cabal of the same old Democratic Party faithful.

So since we can’t get to breakfast without hope, maybe there’s another route to minor revolution, a route that quietly accommodates Woster’s recipe. Maybe instead of a new second party, advocates of change could form their own loose association of donors, activists, and volunteers who find the status quo of back-scratching, good-old-boy monolithery unhealthy in South Dakota politics. Maybe those do-better-ers can pool their resources and identify candidates of all stripes who promise to buck the in-bred caucus and focus on solving problems. Instead of forming a party with all the trappings of a constitution and platform and conventions and nominated candidates, those change agents remain a political action committee with no partisan affiliation, no beholdenness to any national committee, no striving to attend any national convention, and no effort to take over any party. This PAC would simply save progressive donor dollars from irrelevance and quietly back real changemakers.

There is no easy solution here. Forming and funding a non-aligned PAC to push pragmatic candidates to positions of power in Pierre is probably no easier than playing Woster’s RINO game and hoping the Noem/Lederman clique (not to mention our consciences) doesn’t see it coming. But thinking of a solution is more fun than surrender.

99 Comments

  1. John Tsitrian 2019-09-17 07:32

    Woster’s idea has some precedent in South Dakota. During the early years of the 20th century, Democrats were virtually a 3rd, minority, party, with the dominant Republicans split into progressive and conservative (then called “stalwarts”) wings. In ’04, conservatives got Samuel Elrod elected, but progressives–probably swept up by the national movement–won the next election, with Coe Crawford winning the governorship, followed by Robert Vessey, all 3 of them Republicans. My take is that a lot of disaffected Republicans, like me, could get behind a new progressive wing in the GOP and turn into a considerable force if Dems and Independents could support them. It’s happened ‘afore, could happen agin’.

  2. o 2019-09-17 08:14

    I agree: one party is the same as NO party. Without a “D” to demonize, candidates will have to talk issues. issues not washed in a haze of partisanship.

  3. Kal Lis 2019-09-17 08:19

    I offer Democrats the following suggestions,

    1. Accept the following as fact, and recite as a mantra if necessary: George McGovern, Tom Daschle, Tim Johnson, and Stephanie Herseth Sandlin will not return to save you.

    2. The 2020 election cycle is about keeping the few legislative seats you have and nothing else.

    3. Democratic legislatures should use the 2020 and 2021 legislative sessions to exacerbate and all divisions between the extreme Trumpists and the less extreme Trumpists.

    4. The previous point is most important when it comes to redistricting.

    5. After redistricting, do the research to find three or four districts where demographics indicate success is most likely. Recruit candidates and concentrate party resources to get those candidates elected.

    6. From 2022 through 2031 concentrate on holding legislative seats, gaining one or two seats each election cycle, and do everything possible to enlarge the rifts inside the Republican party.

    7. In 2031, work like hell to get a redistricting plan that preserves any gains that have been made.

    8. Repeat from 2032 through 2040.

  4. Donald Pay 2019-09-17 08:55

    Tsitrian makes a good point, but it’s not a complete history. “Progressivism” was a tendency that had strong Republican roots from the very beginning. That was true all across the Northern part of the country. Over time, though, most progressives migrated to the Democratic Party, but some always remained Republicans, becoming the liberal or moderate tendencies in the Republican Party. Today, however, there is hardly a progressive tendency anywhere in the Republican Party anywhere in the nation. There’s a more moderate tendency, but it’s not progressive. With Trumpism overtaking the Republican Party, moderate Republicans are moving move to the Democratic Party. That’s the movement I want to see. Unfortunately, too many moderate Republicans are bought off by the promise of power, not by the power of ideas or morality. They stay in the Republican Party and pretend to make a difference.

    Democrats in South Dakota have been through this before several times. It ain’t the end of the party, but it is disheartening. For someone like Woster, who has pretty centrist views, I suppose it makes some sense to cross party lines. He can vote for a centrist Republican candidate or a centrist Democrat.

    When I was active in South Dakota politics, I voted mostly for Democrats, but I worked with liberals and conservatives against the middle. That was the lesson learned from the Oahe Irrigation Project fight, and that’s how all of the environmental issues of the 1980s through the 1990s were fought in South Dakota. They were all non-partisan, usually with the conservatives and liberals against the center. Only in the mining issue did we have a good chunk of the middle with us.

  5. John Tsitrian 2019-09-17 09:24

    Agreed, Pay. The label “progressive” would hardly fit the disaffected, moderate Pubs who’d consider fulfilling Woster’s musings about rejoining the party and challenging the Trumpist stalwarts who dominate it now. “Sane Republicans” would be a better appellation.

  6. David Newquist 2019-09-17 09:25

    John Tsitrian alludes to a time when our neighbors to the north were fed up with Republican rule and formed the Non-Partisan League, which infiltrated the Republican primary in 1916 and took over the party. https://www.history.nd.gov/ndhistory/npl.html The League had a brief influence in South Dakota, but nothing like the effect it had on North Dakota. It was a time of firming up homesteads and making life more manageable, but both states now are faced with the brain drain. It is more hopeful to move than to change the culture.

  7. Bernie 2019-09-17 09:33

    Kallis’ proposal makes sense.

    Times will change. Our youth are more progressive than their elders. South Dakota needs a progressive (and yes, liberal) party to challenge the majority today and be prepared to serve when the people are ready for change.

    The “win at any cost” mentality is one of the biggest problems with politics … seek to win no matter what positions you have to take, no matter how you have to raise the money, no matter who you have to support to remain “relevant.”

    Losing elections is no fun, but for me I’d much rather lose with honor than follow the example of power-hungry sycophants like Lyndsey Graham.

    Whether you’re conservative or liberal, give me candidates who think for themselves and take positions based on what they truly believe — not what they believe it takes to get more votes or more money.

  8. grudznick 2019-09-17 09:54

    To counter your claims about the more progressive Mr. Knudson getting a third place ribbon in 2010 I would point out that was the year Mr. Howie overgodded with grudznick’s money, incurred grudznick’s wrath, and came in fourth, thus showing the insaner you are the lower you drop.

  9. Donald Pay 2019-09-17 11:06

    Bernie encapsulates what I think, but I’d be for a more aggressive timeline than Kal Lis, and I’d reorient the timeline to reflect what is most important. A timeline to regain power wouldn’t be my goal. A timeline to do the work that the people of South Dakota deserve is the goal.

    I also don’t think you have a goal of exacerbating divisions in the Republican Party. You simply go issue by issue, and address them, and you try to bring Republicans along. No one cares who runs the show if you are addressing the issues the people want addressing, so the effort should be to address issues that people want fixed. From the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s the Democrats had a lot of talented people addressing various issues, and a lot of success. Progress was made whether Republicans or Democrats held power. My opinion is the best Legislatures were those when power was split pretty equally which was the case in part of that time period.

  10. Robert McTaggart 2019-09-17 12:01

    CNN reports that Cokie Roberts has passed away due to complications from breast cancer.

  11. o 2019-09-17 12:28

    I offer this thought experiment: if ALL of SD voters would register as “republican,” what would be the first group compelled to splinter from that group. Who will absolutely need to have a differentiated label? Would we follow the well-worn paths back into liberal/conservative ideology? Could many groups emerge?

    To Kal Lis and others: why work so hard to perpetuate the Democrat party – and therefore a two-party system that since Washington, we have been aware will be the rot of our political system. Wouldn’t it be far better to take ideas and advocate them based on merit and not have ideas dismissed out of hand for partisanship labeling?

  12. David Newquist 2019-09-17 13:33

    Much has been made of the closing of offices by the SDDP as a symptom of the party’s demise. There is an overabundance of expert advice on what the party and its erstwhile members should do, but there is very little examination of the actual facts. For example, what has changed that had all three federal congressional seats held by Democrats to a situation where they are now all held by Republicans? And how the kind of personalities changed? From Daschle’s industry to Thune’s feckless hovering over the shoulder of Moscow Mitch during photo ops, or from Herseth Sandlin’s aggressive reaches across the aisle to Noem who had trouble getting to committee meetings, and now, as governor, is mentally exhausted from pondering the nature of god and hemp.

    During early years of this century, the SDDP was in perpetual and crippling debt. The main task for its leadership was to get out of the debt, which they did. During the time of Obama’s rise, there east and west river organizers whose salaries were paid by the DNC. I don’t know what happened to those arrangements. But I do know there has been a demographic shift which is demonstrated by the kind of people who have been elected to our highest offices. They are an expression of the essential character of the state.

    Escaping the character that tolerates, even promotes, corruption as a means of economic development becomes a major concern for the decent remnants. They need a refuge from the purveyors of EB-5 and GEAR UP. They won’t find it in a party whose slovenly financial reporting casts doubt on its ability to function at anything. But a refuge is needed.

  13. Kal Lis 2019-09-17 13:45

    A few quick comments (I hope they’re quick anyway)

    First, Bernie’s line “Losing elections is no fun, but for me I’d much rather lose with honor than follow the example of power-hungry sycophants like Lyndsey Graham” wins the Internet for today.

    Second, I too would like a quicker demise of single-party rule, but districts equal destiny (sort of), and it will take time for Democrats to develop leaders and candidates. I should have said something about more Democrats running for county commissions and school boards as well.

    I believe South Dakota Democrats have rushed some of their young, potential stars into statewide races before they had built a reputation in the legislature or other leadership positions. I don’t want to see a repeat of that mistake.

    Third, I apologize if I implied that exacerbating Republican divisions was a goal. I see it as a tactic. The goal is ending the Republican monopoly on power. Certainly, Democrats should act on principle, and I agree that they should proceed on an issue by issue basis. Woster titled his post “If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Join ‘Em.” My point about exacerbating divisions is “If You Can’t Beat ‘Em Now, Make Them Beat Themselves.”

    Finally, to o’s point. I am no fan of the Republican/Democrat duopoly, but it’s better than single-party rule, and I don’t see South Dakota or the United States accepting a multi-party system or any other democratic (note the lower case d) alternative.

  14. Porter Lansing 2019-09-17 13:53

    Be aware, high schoolers. Notice how liberals and centrists discuss a problem and engage their brains to offer new and unique answers. Notice too, that SD conservatives can’t handle any idea that moves beyond, “Don’t Ever Change!”
    ~ Throughout history when one party tyranny has overwhelmed free-minded people, the solution has been the same. From America’s Minutemen to the French Resistance to the Viet Cong. The answer has been to go deep, go dirty, and be invisible. DEEP STATE DISRUPTION
    ~ Guerrilla politics is a form of irregular organization in which small groups of citizens, such as para-political personnel, electronically aware civilians/irregulars, use military tactics including ambushes, sabotage, raids, petty disruption, hit-and-run tactics, and mobility, to fight a larger and less-mobile traditional political tyrant.
    ~ Guerrilla government is a type of asymmetric competition between opponents of unequal strength. Accordingly, guerrilla statesmanship aims to magnify the impact of a small, mobile force on a larger, more-cumbersome one. When successful, guerrilla politicos weaken their enemy by attrition, eventually forcing them to withdraw.
    ~ Do your part to disrupt state, county and local governments. Agitate the Republican Party and those conservatives willing to stand on the neck of our Constitution to prevent free and fair democracy in South Dakota. Make life difficult for the extremist conservative in any way possible. Lie, cheat, and steal to regain equality. It’s been the American way since 1776.

  15. Steve Pearson 2019-09-17 14:38

    You can call it the United Cory Socialist Democratic Party.

  16. leslie 2019-09-17 14:41

    Governor Rounds and GOED and republican lawmakers stonewalled EB5 investigations to elect him as senator, just like bubba trump does now to avoid impeachment.

  17. cibvet 2019-09-17 14:59

    I think you are all giving the voter to much credit for informative voting. Most merely hit the voting booth and look for an R behind the name and put down a check mark. With Wooster’s idea, at least some progressives would win the primary and then be a shoe in during a regular election if there is a Democrat on the ballot.

  18. Peter Carrels 2019-09-17 15:02

    Interesting conversation. I have not been involved in partisan politics, though I vote Democrat. A couple observations from my seat in the bleachers. I wish Democrats were more interested in explaining the value of government. And by that I mean frugal, useful, helpful government. This notion of private sector versus public sector has been harmful to Democrats. It’s a sound bite Republicans continue to exploit. Freedom good. Government bad. I’d also like to see the Democrats take on Big Ag. Government policies support corporate agriculture, including chemically intensive agriculture. We should be supporting regenerative agriculture. We should be protecting the public from polluted water and depleted soils, and from processed, unhealthy food. We subsidize corn but not perennials. What we have right now is “socialized” farming. I’d also like to see the Democrats point out the hypocrisy in Republican accusations about the Democrats being the party of socialism. As a community and society we give away buildings, land, infrastructure and tax breaks to corporations and other businesses so they build factories and plants. But if somebody proposes providing health care to poor people they’re called a socialist. I appreciate the importance of job creation, but we must not bow down to those who create jobs. We need to do a better job explaining that “government” is necessary to control corporations and powerful business interests from exploiting the public. Sorry for the long rant.

  19. Kyle 2019-09-17 15:11

    Why not both? Register as republican and vote regularly in the primaries, which are the only elections that matter in many parts of South Dakota. Direct your dollars and efforts towards electing candidates that you more truly agree with.

    A sizable percentage of registered republicans are so because they figured out long ago what Woster is advocating. They tip the scales in primaries so that republicans nominate somewhat sane people instead of burn-it-all-down total nut jobs. This gets us things like the sales tax raise for schools and the failure of transphobic legislation. It also gets us congressional delegates like Dusty Johnson instead of Neil Tapio.

    There is next to zero reason for the average democratic voter to register as a democrat in South Dakota. There are no contested primaries, and even if there are, the democratic nominee will probably lose the general election. Almost no one pays attention to who party delegates are. Most people are not running for any office themselves. Registered republicans are likely given more credence when advocating issues to their elected (republican) representatives. If you want to have maximum political impact in South Dakota, in most cases, you register republican and vote in primaries.

    The South Dakota Democratic Party will almost certainly not disappear completely, but it will continue on more inept than ever. Hopefully that changes, because some much more competent organization and data collection needs to happen to elect future democratic candidates. That won’t be done by a PAC. Those of us who are not die-hards active in internal party matters will likely be better off just registering republican while we hope that the party can get its crap together.

  20. Donald Pay 2019-09-17 15:27

    Peter, You are exactly the sort of person who can do this. Consider this a nudge for you to consider running. Now I bet you are sorry you piped up.

    I wish everyone would read your book, “Uphill Against Water,” a great history of the Oahe Irrigation Project fight. That book and the people profiled in there meant a lot to me. It is so important to understanding how grassroots people, like United Family Farmers and their allies, can work across political divides in order to accomplish good things for South Dakota, even as they were maligned for being obstructionists.

  21. leslie 2019-09-17 15:35

    Yah sure Wooster. Join the republicans??? And deter Janklow and every other office holder on that side since. Do Dems have to take every frick’n thing to a federal judge to get thru cronyism in SD?

    “In short, there is no good reason why the House should be prohibited from viewing these redacted passages from the Mueller report, along with all underlying investigative materials, which it also seeks. In the past, the Department of Justice has consented to similar requests, and its failure to do so here is just its latest effort to stonewall any meaningful investigation of the president. Fortunately, the District Court has lots of good reasons to reject its arguments.” https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2019/09/william-barr-impeachment-hearing-mueller-report-grand-jury.html

  22. Debbo 2019-09-17 20:55

    Don said, ” No one cares who runs the show if you are addressing the issues the people want addressing, so the effort should be to address issues that people want fixed.”

    Don, I don’t think that’s still true for a large swath of South Dakotans. I believe this hyper-partisan atmosphere has superseded “good governance” with “R” first in my home state. The SDGOP has not been fixing things, yet they continue to get the votes.

  23. Adam 2019-09-18 01:05

    Think of it this way: If a huge majority of Non-Republicans suddenly and consistently flooded every South Dakota Republican primary election, EVERYTHING WOULD CHANGE in South Dakota – nearly overnight. Instantly, ALL the Phil Jensen’s across the state would no longer have a place in state government. Then, in following elections, even more sensible professional people would feel more comfortable running for elected positions.

    Worst case scenario: When EVERY candidate, as a formal matter of due process, is slinging accusations about the other being a ‘Liberal in Disguise’ (really slinging it!) the average Republican Primary Election voter will have the absolute hardest time discerning anything. In fact, I estimate that it would create the absolute toughest and smartest strategy anyone could ever construct for all the non-Republicans of this state. However, we would all have to do it together. Sigh*

    Who in this whole wide world could ever come along to inspire us ALL to accomplish such a utilitarian and assertive thing? Perhaps Wooster?

  24. bearcreekbat 2019-09-18 01:21

    Maybe the question is how did the “R” brand become such a driving force in the minds of those voters who might ignore most policies and issues but are steadfastly loyal to the “R” next to the name of candidates they know nothing else about, and why the “R” continues to have that impact?

  25. Porter Lansing 2019-09-18 03:43

    BEAR … My thoughts on your question have been the primary reason I’ve been involved in Cory’s blog, low these many years. I’ve come to believe the answer is a direct result of the brain drain. What and who remain when the best and brightest have moved away for seventy five or more years? What is the marriage market among those left? Who are the children of these unions? What biases were instilled into the vulnerable minds of these kids? My humble assessment is that the unwavering Republican majority are simply the result of a “depleted gene pool of ignorance”.
    Can they me flipped to the enlightenment, tolerance, and empathy for their peers of liberalism? What do you think, BCB?

  26. o 2019-09-18 08:19

    Adam, your scenario would be a wonderful way to have the “REAL RINO” discussion. What does Republican REALLY mean and who is the “fake?”

    I really do believe that in many core ways, I – the liberal Democrat – am more true to core Republican ideals than the current crop of fanatic theocratic absolutist kleptocratic ideologues calling themselves the “true” Republicans.

  27. Donald Pay 2019-09-18 08:54

    Why Republican? It’s like middle school. You follow the leader, you do the easy thing, and you don’t think that much.

    Most people want to be in the popular crowd, I’ve found. It starts in middle school. If you don’t have very strong political views one way or the other, you tend to default to the party where your trusted friends or co-workers house themselves. In South Dakota, historically, that has been the Republican Party. In other states, it’s the Democratic Party.

    Now, I’m not really that kind of person. I always identified with the powerless, the “other,” beginning in junior high school. Those are the classmates the in-crowd looked down on, and the grown-up version of the popular clique, the Republican Party, stomps on.

    I rejected that, starting in junior high. My family was part of the Sioux Falls Republican establishment. I rejected that. A lot of my voting history involves voting for the interests of those who are so demoralized and downtrodden that they don’t bother to vote. I fight for the people who the Republican Party thinks are not worthy of eating, or having health care or maintaining good drinking water.

    There aren’t a lot of people who are wiling to do that, I’ve found. They are willing to follow the leader. If you are sticking up for the least of these, you will be rejected. Take pride in fighting for justice. It is never popular.

  28. Adam 2019-09-18 11:12

    O, it’s no longer just my scenario, it’s Wooster’s too, and yes, it should now be 100% clear that rural state Republican Primary voters no longer know what the word ‘conservative’ even means; they literally think, “politics its the art of making stuff up as you go along” – and it comes very natural to feral people to think and feel this way.

    Unfortunately, Wooster and I are far more creative, utilitarian, strategic and have far more desire to succeed -in life- than most every other non-Republican out here. Sad.

    It’s better to be married to ideas instead of labels. Call me whatever name you want, and I will still always know who I am regardless of name calling.

  29. bearcreekbat 2019-09-18 11:39

    That is an interesting theory Porter. The main problem I see is that it presumes the people following the “R” have some knowledge and understanding of some of the more pernicious aspects of the Republican philosophy, which in turn would suggest that these acolytes are educated enough to rank tolerance and empathy substantially below the thoughtless self-interest and plain old greed that seems to reflect the thinking of modern Trumpian Republicans.

    Donald Pay’s theory seems closer to current thinking, or more accurately non-thinking consistent with your theory about the brain drain factor. It seems that going along with the “R” crowd can be easier than actually thinking about whether the “R” crowd truely supports values that you might find important. But the problem I see with Donald’s theory is that it begs the question – why did the “R” crowd initially choose to blindly follow the “R” candidates?

  30. Porter Lansing 2019-09-18 11:46

    That’s not my assertion, Bear. Exactly the opposite. The “leftovers” from the brain drain have little interest in politics or anything other than their own id. They vote R because it takes the least thought and bonds them to their other non-thinking brethren.

  31. bearcreekbat 2019-09-18 12:04

    You are right Porter, that assertion was a product of my own thinking about your theory, with the idea that it might be a necessary, but unarticulated, premise of your theory that you had not asserted. Rejectiing that notion seems to place your analysis parallel to Donald’s, which again leaves the question open as to why the non-thinking brethern adopted this view of the “R” in the first place.

  32. Porter Lansing 2019-09-18 12:22

    Dr. Newquist mentions in his post that when college students return home for holidays they’re often met with disdain and rejection from their classmates who couldn’t get accepted or chose not to go on in education. This is the first gathering of the group who become unthinking Republican voters. Herd mentality then grows. In a harsh environment like SD being “of the group” is vital for most of life. Challenging the norm can make it an even harder place to live.

  33. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-09-18 12:30

    Kyle, the idea that the Woster plan is already operating and has gotten us Dusty instead of Neal in Congress doesn’t sound like ringing proof of difference-making. Ideological yahoos like Neal have failed in statewide GOP primaries, not because the GOP primariate is rife with progressive RINOs but because the party apparatus is controlled by opportunists who protect their power and network first and foremost. The purportedly “sane” Republicans hanging on to power aren’t progressive victories but only less bad regressivists who still shut out real discussion of progressive policy alternatives.

    Sales tax for schools? All we get from Woster infiltrators is an increase in our regressive tax structure that only moves us up a few states in teacher pay rankings and leaves us last in the region? Sure, the teacher pay raise was better than the kick in the pants that folks like Haugaard would give us, but the same progressives surrendered to stealth vouchers for private schools.

    The current Woster Republicans aren’t fostering progressive change; they are at best regressive decline while leaving the conservative narrative intact and unassailable in South Dakota.

  34. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-09-18 12:32

    And are we doomed to see any semblance of opposition labor in secrecy and deception? Seems like a crappy way to live compared with simply being oneself, openly and honestly.

  35. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-09-18 12:41

    (Notice the only thing Steve Pearson contributes to what Woster and the commenters here consider a really important and interesting discussion is his quick, childish attempt to turn it into another personal argument.)

  36. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-09-18 12:43

    John T, did Democrats as a party officially support the erstwhile progressive wing of the Crawford-era GOP? Or are you speaking of “civilian” Democrats, people who consider themselves Dems but work quietly within the GOP structure?

    Note that formal, open endorsement by Democrats would not work within the Woster plan.

  37. Porter Lansing 2019-09-18 12:47

    A crappy way to live? Active and secretive resistance to what is standing on the neck of your democracy? What’ve you got, now? Whack-A-Mole politics, where ethics laws are discarded like used diapers. Living openly and honestly is the goal. Making it happen is the task. Deep, dark, dirty, and anonymously is the method! e.g. How the Vietnamese got their country back from the oppression of the French.

  38. Donald Pay 2019-09-18 12:48

    I don’t mean to give the impression that people in the Republican Party are “non-thinking.” It’s just that the way they think is different, and that’s fine. I may think their ideas are shallow or wrong, but they do have a right to be shallow and wrong. I still think you can work with people on issues, even if you disagree with them on other issues. I found people can work together, even with profound political differences. You get to appreciate their way of thinking, even if you disagree. But as far as joining their social set or political party? That’s not me.

  39. John Tsitrian 2019-09-18 13:37

    Cory, my book (South Dakota Story by Karolevitz) doesn’t say much about the Dems of that day other than they were “virtually a third party.” I get the sense that all the political action was between the competing wings of the GOP and that Dems were pretty much out of the process.

  40. Kyle 2019-09-18 15:18

    Cory: Po-tay-to, Po-tat-to. If my options are a teacher pay raise or a kick in the pants, and I get the teacher pay raise, I call that a win. If I get a “regressivist” who is “less bad” than the alternative, I call that a win. Until there is a viable path to bigger wins, you do what you can to get some small ones. At the moment, I’d take an early learning advisory council, Medicaid expansion, and just preventing the legislature from passing any more stupid stuff (e.g. bathroom bills, requiring state law enforcement to report immigrant status, predator bounty programs).

    It’s not like this strategy really even requires secrecy and deception. Plenty of people are openly supportive of progressive ideas and candidates while registering Republican and voting in the primaries. Adelstein has been one prominent example ever since leaving office. My party registration is not a significant part of my personal identity – it is simply a means of maximizing my voting influence. If a hundred thousand or so more people thought the same way, that could significantly change the complexion of Republican primaries.

    One challenge the SDDP is going to have to return to relevancy is to ensure that it is not captured by the far left of the party (a group over-represented among this blogs’ commenters). As the moderates in the party notice its lack of efficacy and abandon ship, more and more of the party will be the die hards who pull it farther left. Effectively nobody cares one iota what is in the SDDP platform except for Republicans who can use it to attack Democratic candidates, but I have little doubt it will continue drifting farther to the left. Less focus by the party on litmus test social issues and greater focus on economic issues that matter to families creates a big tent that can encompass candidates who stand a chance (e.g. Sutton) but who would be considered Republicans on either coast.

  41. Debbo 2019-09-18 17:37

    I can guarantee what this means:
    “Less focus by the party on litmus test social issues.”

    Leave women under the bus — again.

  42. Kyle 2019-09-18 18:07

    Debbo: You are not wrong. Abortion is the most prominent of the social litmus test issues to which I was referring. But, no one wins elections in South Dakota by championing abortion rights as a centerpiece of their campaign. Billie Sutton had a shot in large part because his record on abortion rights is awful. If given the choice between ideological purity and 25% of the vote, or a candidate with a real chance to win who is clearly better than the Republican alternative on almost every other issue, I’ll gladly hold my nose and pick the candidate who has a chance.

    On abortion specifically, lets look at the actual impact. South Dakota has ONE abortion clinic in Sioux Falls that performs abortions ONE day a week. Anyone in western SD needing an abortion is better off going to Colorado or Montana. Most people in eastern South Dakota outside of Sioux Falls itself are better off going to Minnesota due to the waiting period here. Aside from having a presence in the state so there is standing to challenge some of our ridiculous abortion laws, it would probably make more sense to just put the clinic across the border in Minnesota.

    Where there is actually strong public support for big progressive ideas (e.g. minimum wage hike), the initiative process has been a much better tool for pursuing those objectives than has the legislature. Simply mitigating the damage in the legislature is a worthy goal that benefits from a Democratic party that is willing to embrace moderates who are not ideologically pure.

  43. Debbo 2019-09-18 20:16

    Kyle, here’s a more accurate rendition of your initial paragraph:

    “Women’s rights is the most prominent of the social litmus test issues to which I was referring. But, no one wins elections in South Dakota by championing women’s rights as a centerpiece of their campaign. Billie Sutton had a shot in large part because his record on women’s rights is awful.”

    Is that the policy you want to support? Not me. And the SDDP won’t energize women by throwing them under the bus.

    The SDGOP attacks on women’s rights is unprecedented since 1920. You can see how the women’s vote has come to the fore as a result. Look at what women did in the 2018 election! The SDDP thumbs its nose at a powerful political force by considering women and our rights to be expendable.

  44. grudznick 2019-09-18 20:20

    Freud considered some girls’ negative Oedipus complex to be more emotionally intense than that of a boy, resulting in a woman of submissive, insecure personality, rudeness, and hatred of all men.

  45. Porter Lansing 2019-09-18 20:50

    Grudzie, my boy. Freud had more to say about your castration anxiety. That’s your overwhelming fear of damage to, or loss of your penis from your father’s punishment for sexual feelings towards your mother. Grow up, boy.

  46. grudznick 2019-09-18 20:55

    I was talking about your penis envy, Mr. Lansing, not Ms. Debbo’s psychosexual mis-development.

    Got yer goat, Mr. Lansing!!! Ha!

  47. Kyle 2019-09-18 23:19

    Debbo: Your rendition is not more accurate. Abortion is not strictly equivalent to women’s rights. This is the same sort of all or nothing thinking that lets those opposed to abortion substitute “murder” instead of “women’s rights” into the argument. It is important to be able to recognize that some people oppose abortion because of genuinely held moral beliefs (e.g. that it is murder) rather than because of some sort of desire to oppress women.

    A substantial number of South Dakota women (likely more than half based on national polling) are also opposed to abortion in a lot of circumstances and would reject your re-framing. Rather obviously, the female half of the population also cares about a lot of other things, like putting food on the table, being able to get medical care, and their kids’ education.

    All other things being equal, I would generally prefer to support pro-choice politicians. But, I won’t make that a litmus test for support that excludes otherwise good candidates with a better chance of winning. It does not accomplish much to always back perfect candidates who never win.

  48. Debbo 2019-09-19 00:13

    You’re wrong Kyle. What is more basic to freedom and autonomy than having control over your own body?

    You’re also wrong about the number of women who oppose the SDGOP’s anti women, abortion laws. Remember that those laws were referred and lost handily.

    “Choice” is the point. Free Americans have the choice to reproduce or not. The GOP wants to take that freedom away from women. The Democratic Party should not not be willing to “compromise” anyone’s freedom. Women’s freedom is no more negotiable than men’s.

  49. John Dale 2019-09-19 05:41

    Preface: I was reading through all the comments, so my contributions below are a bit disjointed. I will say, thought, that my thoughts turned to feminine financial domination as a root cause of the problem before the male/female dust-up happened .. it was delightful. Women, it’s time to start empowering the strongest and most capable of the men in the village .. or learn to shoot straighter.

    Overall, Cory is doing what Cory does, which is why I have come to enjoy reading and interacting with him so much; asking the tough questions and reading all the way to the bottom.

    — my stream of consciousness comments below —

    Peter Carrels – “What we have right now is “socialized” farming.”

    This is a wedge issue that will appeal to many in SD coast to coast.

    You stopped short of saying that our hospitals are gladly accepting people made sick by the food system. Williamson, before she was ejected with Gabbard from the national Democratic sphere, won a debate on this single issue.

    Hemp and Organic localized food and the restoration of the family farm are conservative ideas that have been puked out of the SD Republican sphere by the neocon establishment who secretly hate Trump because they have huge investments in China. The followed the globalist bank cookbook, and the dish is coming out tasting like isht.

    If nothing else, Republicans in SD are very good at sniffing out hustles like this. Cory is right that anybody that has infiltrated will likely be marginalized.

    bearcreekbat – “Maybe the question is how did the “R” brand become such a driving force in the minds of those voters who might ignore most policies and issues but are steadfastly loyal to the “R””

    I believe it is ultra-wealthy church ladies and their portfolio managers.

    Cory – “the party apparatus is controlled by opportunists who protect their power and network first and foremost”

    Ha! See? :) We agree on this .. and by extension, $ is power. That said, the hidden power on both sides is females who use men to front via the “good ol’ boy network”. Cat fights are the worse fights ..

    “Seems like a crappy way to live compared with simply being oneself, openly and honestly.”

    Being honest and open and addressing the issues is a good plan for both sides. But you have to heal greed disease, first.

    Debbo – “Leave women under the bus — again.”

    Women have it easier than men, by and large. Women live longer, inherit the mens’ money, commit suicide less, die less frequently in battle on foreign wars, have PTSD less, and have (in the US circa 2007) more money in the bank than the GDP of Japan. Add to that: women are certifiably insane around 1/4+ of each month, and are insane for months on end during menopause. Female biology is scary .. always has been.

    “Women get thrown under the bus”

    I think you mis-spelled “men”.

    If the democratic party in SD wants to remake itself, try bring more men into the financial fold.

    If I might be blunt and obvious, if Democratic women in South Dakota empower a male financial fiscal intermediary to build out a center-of-the-nation software information systems industry, the sky is the limit.

  50. John Dale 2019-09-19 05:43

    A recognition within the Democrat community that “the treatment of the unborn is a travesty” would go a very long way to repairing the damage. Doubling-down on abortion, in my view, is a great way to lose a LOT of elections. Throw in some really bad logic with respect to gun logic, and you have Trump for another 4 years, and somebody even worse for the next 8.

    https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/buttigieg-speaks-after-days-of-silence-on-2-000-fetuses-in-home-of-south-bend-abortionist

  51. John Dale 2019-09-19 05:45

    Want to win? REFORM THE PLATFORM?

    It’s not womens’ rights when abortion is used for birth control.

  52. Kyle 2019-09-19 10:00

    Debbo: National polling (we don’t have South Dakota specific polling) regularly shows that there is not a significant gender gap in views on abortion. If a strong majority of South Dakota women held strong pro-choice views, this would be a winning issue. It clearly has not been though.

    National polling also consistently demonstrates that a majority of Americans hold some sort of middle ground rather than absolutist position on abortion. The laws that were referred a bit over a decade ago were either absolutist (no abortion in any circumstance) or almost absolutist (only exceptions being rape, incest, and mother’s health). At that time 45% or so of South Dakotan’s still voted for the absolutist anti-abortion position, which is over three times what one would expect for that position based based on national polling (e.g. Pew Research Center).

    I would also suggest that the practical impacts on most South Dakota women of even completely banning the D&E procedure (with a strong health exception) in South Dakota at this point would be minimal. Medication induced abortions will account for over a third of abortions in the near future. For anyone outside of Sioux Falls, it is already more convenient to leave the State for a D&E procedure. It is more a matter a principle at this point than it is practical effect.

    I am not advocating that the party suddenly go all-in on an anti-abortion platform or spout craziness like John Dale is doing, but rather make sure there is a place in the party for pro-life progressives.

  53. John Dale 2019-09-19 10:38

    Kyle – I am the progenitor if the idea you just endorsed within this thread. Why not just give credit and move-on? The “go all-in on an anti-abortion platform or spout craziness” comment is counter productive, but does lead me to another point.

    Summarily and back-handedly dismissing the ideas of the intellectually acute willing to participate in an open forum seems to incite the party’s inner sociopath/narcissist. That, too, is a way to lose a lot more elections.

    Stop arguing against the person! Ad hominem attacks used to dismiss cogent, sound ideas/arguments is a sure path to lose.

  54. Kyle 2019-09-19 11:34

    John Dale: I don’t give credit and move on when someone says stuff like this: “women are certifiably insane around 1/4+ of each month, and are insane for months on end during menopause. Female biology is scary .. always has been.”

    Much of your post is nothing but misogynistic crazy talk. It’s not “intellectually acute” or worth engaging with.

  55. mike from iowa 2019-09-19 12:25

    South Dakota Initiative 11 (2008)
    Result Votes Percentage
    Defeated No 206,535 55.21%
    Yes 167,560 44.79%

    initiative to ban all abortions.

  56. mike from iowa 2019-09-19 12:33

    In 2004 and 2006, lawmakers supported a ban–the 2006 ban passed 47 to 22 in the House, 23 to 12 in the Senate–at least in part because they feared their constituency would boot them for voting against it. But then in 2006, voters turned back the ban, 55.57 percent to 44.43 percent, after opponents hammered the point that the ban lacked exceptions for rape or incest victims or to protect the health of the pregnant woman. So sponsors of the ban redid it for 2008 with exceptions included–a watered down version that, according the only publicly released poll of 2008, had narrowed the margin to a dead heat. Almost everybody predicted a nail-biter. But voters rejected that measure by an equally wide margin of 55.21 percent to 44.79 percent.

    Clear majorities voted against ban on abortions twice. Doesn’t sound like wingnuts pay much attention to the will of the people when they firmly believe the activist, extreme right wing nutjob SPOTUS will deliver victory to them by disregarding precedents.

  57. John Dale 2019-09-19 12:39

    mike from iowa – “all abortions”

    Hitchhiker example: If you pick up a hitchhiker and he threatens your life, or he has forced his way into your car, you can kick him out at 70mph. Otherwise, you must provide safe egress. If you pick up a hitchhiker (fetus), and you did it willingly (consensual sex), you must provide safe egress (give birth, adoption).

    I suspect that if this were applied to another statewide vote, the numbers would change drastically. The right’s insistence that cases of rape and incest require full term birth neglects the property rights of the mother (property rights which change in the event of consensual sex).

    One church lady recently made the argument to me that the unborn baby should not be punished for the sins of the rapist. My answer to that is that the right to self defense outweighs the absolute right to life. It’s a tough call, but the right one in a world of difficult moral choices.

    Something else that would change that vote contemporarily is the fact that we now have incontrovertible proof that the abortion industry has been using fetal tissue for life extension and dark arts rituals – DISGUSTING.

    In order to create a steady supply of tissue, NLP and drugs were used to influence poor mothers to provide the raw material of this crime against humanity, punishable by death (post birth abortion is 1st degree murder).

  58. mike from iowa 2019-09-19 12:44

    If a strong majority of South Dakota women held strong pro-choice views, this would be a winning issue. It clearly has not been though.

    Abortion ban was struck down by clear majorities twice. Didn’t seem like wingnuts were about to submit to the will of the people.

  59. John Dale 2019-09-19 12:45

    mike from iowa – planned parenthood officials have been busted marketing fetal tissue, and proved that a baby parts industry exists. This must be stopped since human sacrifice is a harbinger of societal collapse.

    The hard right needs to compromise, too .. birth control methods should be readily available along with a healthy dose of sexual education regarding STD’s.

    Lastly, 2008 was the height of the unobstructed, unchecked pro-globalist, pro-abortion, anti-black propaganda.

    Since then we have alternative channels, thankfully, getting the truth out about what is really going on with Planned Parenthood.

  60. mike from iowa 2019-09-19 12:46

    Johnny Fraud is a nutjob fraud. Here he is already parsing and deflecting the issues because he can’t seem to keep up.

  61. John Dale 2019-09-19 12:46

    Point me to both failed bills, please. I’ll review them and get back to you. The devil’s in the details ..

  62. mike from iowa 2019-09-19 12:49

    Planned Parenthood did no such thing, Fraud. You are relying on doctored evidence that has been proven to be fraudulent in nature and selectively edited.

    Grow the heck up and go home.

  63. John Dale 2019-09-19 12:50

    mike from iowa – “Johnny Fraud is a nutjob fraud”

    This style of argumentation is neither effective nor credible. You actually have to say WHY you think I’m a fraud, and then provide some evidence. Otherwise, anything you assert without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.

    In reality, you may have the wrong impression about me, and to continue to imply that I have committed fraud will expose you to legal troubles. There is no satire, sardonic tones, or joking in your presentation. It is direct and intentional repeated defamation in a well known public forum with no supporting evidence.

    Put up or shut up, mike from iowa.

  64. John Dale 2019-09-19 12:52

    The video evidence has direct quotes from Planned Parenthood officials naming prices for baby parts. It is not out of context with at one point one of the officials expressing her desire to get a sports car.

    It’s damning evidence.

    Provide some proof of your assertions mike from iowa. Enough with the propaganda.

  65. o 2019-09-19 12:58

    John Dale: “Something else that would change that vote contemporarily is the fact that we now have incontrovertible proof that the abortion industry has been using fetal tissue for life extension and dark arts rituals – DISGUSTING.”

    No, DISGUSTING is the deliberate perpetuation of these myths that are used to enflame emotions. “Incontrovertible?” I do not think that word means what you think it means. Next you will be posting about the myth of post-birth abortions.

  66. Porter Lansing 2019-09-19 13:06

    Fetal stem cells save lives. Discarding them because it makes religious extremists angry means nothing. Prove that PP made a profit from fetal stem cell sales.
    PS … only one vote concerning abortion in SD matters. The Bishop’s vote. The majority follow without fail.

  67. John Dale 2019-09-19 13:20

    Porter Lansing – “Fetal stem cells save lives. Discarding them because it makes religious extremists angry means nothing”

    I appreciate you taking a position. mike from iowa seems to get venomous very quickly, which does not help us move forward together on anything.

    Idealistically, using fetal tissue for medical care has merit. I would concede that point.

    Practically speaking, however, by allowing harvesting of fetal tissue, we create an incentive to kill more babies than would normally die on their own.

    Killing little human beings never ends well for societies throughout history.

    Regarding the Bishop, you have me there. I cannot dispute the totalitarian power of the church in SD, which deploys social engineering church ladies with reckless abandon, much to the detriment of the agency and freewill they espouse to revere.

    True freewill to choose the Christian path comes when the choice has equal financial outcome and is NOT a binary choice like: Satan, Jesus, or None of the Above.

  68. John Dale 2019-09-19 13:21

    o – “We keep them comfortable” — Virginia governor went on the radio.

    It’s not deniable at this point, as Porter Lansing acknowledges.

  69. Porter Lansing 2019-09-19 13:29

    J Dale … Every human life on Earth has a soul. When does God bless a fetus with a soul? When the first two cells divide? When pro-lifers get grossed out and feel guilty about something they’ve concocted within their skulls? I’ll help. A fetus is never blessed with a soul. Cells divide before life begins and cells divide after a human becomes a corpse. A human doesn’t exist until God blesses it with a soul. That’s after it’s born.

  70. mike from iowa 2019-09-19 13:41

    Here is what Northam said, in context, ……Ralph Northam: You know, I wasn’t there, Julie, and I certainly can’t speak for Delegate Tran, but I would tell you — one, the first thing I would say is this is why decisions such as this should be made by [healthcare] providers, physicians, and the mothers and fathers that are involved. There are — you know when we talk about third-trimester abortions, these are done with the consent of, obviously, the mother, with the consent of the physicians, more than one physician by the way. And it’s done in cases where there may be severe deformities, there may be a fetus that’s non-viable. So in this particular example, if a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen. The infant would be delivered, the infant would be kept comfortable, the infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother. So I think this was really blown out of proportion …

    This bill did not pass, was voted down in committee so it is a red herring to bring this into the conversation.

    As for _PP, there are 2 clinics, one in Washington state and one in California that collect certain tissues and ships them to labs and they get reimbursed shipping and handling costs only.

    They are not sold so someone can allegedly buy a sportscar. That is total fabrication and I am personally sick and tired of a certain fraud troll here trying to pass off Alex Jones BS as gospel.

  71. John Dale 2019-09-19 13:53

    Kyle – “”women are certifiably insane around 1/4+ of each month, and are insane for months on end during menopause. Female biology is scary .. always has been.”

    Keep ignoring the truth, keep losing elections. Misogyny is hatred of women. I hate PMS. I’m sure women do, too.

    This kind of language policing loses elections because of its negative effect on truth telling.

    People who talk like you’re talking, in my experiene, are usually just trying to get laid.

  72. John Dale 2019-09-19 13:59

    Oh mike from iowa – “evidence” from Planned Parentood waving their hands and claiming they are not guilty?

    There is a HUGE body of evidence mounting against Planned Parenthood, which disproportionately targets black babies.

    “Two of Planned Parenthood’s business partners, DaVinci Biosciences and DV Biologics, have admitted guilt in a $7.8 million settlement with the Orange County District Attorney for selling aborted baby body parts from Planned Parenthood of Orange & San Bernardino Counties for profit in violation of federal and California law.”

    http://www.centerformedicalprogress.org/2017/12/planned-parenthood-baby-parts-business-partners-admit-guilt-in-7-8-million-settlement/

    As long as anyone with mike from iowa’s point of view is anywhere near the helm of the Democratic party anywhere in the US, you can expect the losses to keep mounting.

  73. John Dale 2019-09-19 14:03

    Porter Langing – “[yes we allow selling baby parts and that’s okay because it saves lives and they are unwanted anyway]”

    mike from iowa – “[this is false it does not happen]”

    Mike, if you will quit slandering me, I can ignore you.

    Porter has a reasonable position, but mike’s ideas in this matter should be dismissed since they are too entrenched and invested in a falsehood.

    Porter, the answer for me hinges on whether or not the ingestion by any means of processed human remains is cannibalism. Maybe we should not eat other sentient critters (which brings fungus into the equation). I’m not sure. But my instincts on cannibalism are black and white. We should not do this for the same reason we should not murder. If I don’t have to worry about it and you don’t have to worry about it because we do not do it (murder), then we can have more fun in life.

  74. jerry 2019-09-19 14:06

    The centers for medical progress is a hoax, more bullpuckey from Pale Dale

    “The Center for Medical Progress (CMP) is an anti-abortion organization that presents itself as “a group of citizen journalists dedicated to monitoring and reporting on medical ethics and advances.” CMP is largely known for its deceptive attacks on Planned Parenthood, the reproductive health provider.”

  75. o 2019-09-19 14:12

    John Dale: “Practically speaking, however, by allowing harvesting of fetal tissue, we create an incentive to kill more babies than would normally die on their own.”

    No, you make an implication that there is more harvesting to meet a demand and you NEVER show either an un-met demand or an increase to supply harvesting. Again, more unfounded assertions to muddy the morality of the discussion.

  76. jerry 2019-09-19 14:15

    This place is so sorry that even a federally recognized legal hemp bill cannot be agreed upon. Why not all join together and be as one, a complete failure. As long as we’re all losers, maybe we can be like the rest… and get paid for it.

  77. Debbo 2019-09-19 14:29

    Rather than reading Dale’s absurdities, I’m still focused on the topic of trading a particular group’s human rights for electoral victories. Two things come to mind:

    1. It’s never white male rights on the block.
    2. If it actually worked, Sutton would have won.

    So not only is it unAmerican, it doesn’t work.

  78. o 2019-09-19 14:34

    Debbo, two great observations; those really resonate.

  79. mike from iowa 2019-09-19 15:35

    There is not a believable scintilla of evidence these California companies were PP affiliates or that PP did anything wrong. CMP is fraudster Daleiden’s baby and has been proven to selectively edit videos to make PP look guilty.

    CMP is less credible than Alex Jones and that is saying something.

  80. Kyle 2019-09-19 15:58

    Debbo: As to your argument that Billie would have won if this strategy worked – Billie got a LOT closer than any other Democrat has in the past 25 years. This strategy did work. There are a lot more single-issue anti-abortion voters in South Dakota than there are single-issue pro-choice voters.

    2018 – 51.0% to 47.6% – Noem v Sutton
    2014 – 70.5% to 25.4% – Dougaard v Wismer
    2010 – 61.5% to 38.5% – Daugaard v Heidepriem
    2006 – 61.7% to 36.1% – Rounds v Billion
    2002 – 56.8% to 41.9% – Rounds v Abbott
    1998 – 64.0% to 32.9% – Janklow v Hunhoff
    1994 – 55.4% to 40.5% – Janklow v Beddow
    1990 – 58.9% to 41.1% – Mickelson v. Samuelson

    If our two realistic choices are an anti-abortion Democrat or an anti-abortion Republican, give me the anti-abortion Democrat. A liberal pro-choice Democrat is not really an option in most of South Dakota, because that person gets their ass kicked by 15 to 45 points every time.

  81. Debbo 2019-09-19 17:36

    Losing by less is still losing.

    The point you’re missing is that I’m not talking about single issue abortion voters. I’m talking about a political party that values and respects women. A party that’s willing to compromise on an issue that limits the rights of women and women only, is demonstrating its lack of value and respect for women.

    What got women so fired up and activated against Moron Misogynist and the GOP? Exactly that, his misogyny. His sexual assaults, his eagerness to nominate anti Roe judges, etc. And the GOP’s anti women statewide laws on abortion, childcare and similar issues. Donations to Emily’s List are at the highest level ever!

    The SDDP is throwing all that power, energy and $ away as they throw women under the bus. Women have had it with being 2nd class citizens. You underestimate the anger that is out there in SD. Remember those abortion referendums. Those weren’t one off exceptions. If anything, the wave has grown, but the SDDP ignores it, opting for cautious fearfulness instead. And losing again.

  82. Debbo 2019-09-19 17:39

    Kyle’s are the same arguments very conservative South Dakotans have used for generations.

    “We have to be careful. We’ve never done it that way. It might not work. People will get upset.”

    Those are losing arguments for SD as a state and for the SDDP.

  83. John Dale 2019-09-19 20:04

    Debbo – “It’s never white male rights on the block.”

    White males are subject to extra judicial punishment, proverbial imprisonment, and persecution just like anybody else.

    I would love to know where my “privilege” is .. I think it’s more people who choose to fight the system (or are convinced to do so by others) that get hit the hardest and divided on metrics like race to make sure the plebes don’t get together and threaten the status quo.

    “The white man is used in the hands of them all like a tool.” — Bob Dylan, Only a Pawn in their Game

  84. John Dale 2019-09-19 20:06

    The South Dakota Democratic Party must give-up its propensity to race bait, and confront its historical relationship with the KKK and other groups doing real damage to minorities not through N-words, but through actions, social manipulation, social experimentation, and financial decisions.

  85. John Dale 2019-09-19 20:08

    I would like to wish the very best of luck to the South Dakota Democratic Party in finding the will and discipline to make the necessary changes to win elections in South Dakota.

  86. mike from iowa 2019-09-19 20:35

    Johnny Fraud is at it again, claiming he doesn’t get favorable treatment because his hide is pastey white and he can walk down any sidewalk anywhere and not be afraid he’ll get stopped for walking while white, or going to the park while white or even get shot just for being white.

    Maybe when snowflakes become the minority his white privilege won’t protect him.

  87. Debbo 2019-09-19 20:53

    Here’s a great opportunity for people who practice imaginary politics, Dale especially, to actually engage in the real thing. What a liberating experience!

    “Culled from a pool of registered voters identified by random stratified sampling, they’re coming to participate in a project called ‘America in One Room,’ with the optimistic goal of testing what would happen if Americans of every demographic and partisan shade sat down in person to ponder the country’s biggest issues. It sounds boring—people in hotel conference rooms reading briefing papers and sitting through guided discussions for a long weekend—but organizers say it’s never been more important for citizens of opposing views and backgrounds to talk deeply about American politics, insulated from the toxicity of everyday political combat.

    “It can happen if you get out of the pitched battles and put people together in a room who have all been exposed to the same balanced briefing papers, who all have to introduce themselves and sit face-to-face over three days.”

    “The process will incentivize evidence-based thoughtful discussion that’s based upon real information, not made-up facts.” [AJ🤣🤣]

    “Deliberative Polling has been used 108 times in 28 different countries since 1994 to foster healthier political dialogue. Fishkin and Diamond, both Helena members, have conducted Deliberative Polls in societies far more riven by racial and ethnic divides—places like Northern Ireland, Uganda, and Bulgaria. In Northern Ireland, in 2007, a representative group of Protestants and Catholics convened for a Deliberative Poll in the town of Omagh on the subject of school integration. After the poll ended, the percentage of attendees believing Protestants were “open to reason” increased from 36% to 52% and the percentage believing Catholics were “open to reason” jumped from 40% to 56%, according to a Financial Times story at the time.”

    “Intense Democracy”: How a Pair of Academics Is Trying to Break the Outrage Cycle

    http://flip.it/Nda8TO

    So, there is hope for Dale.

  88. mike from iowa 2019-09-20 07:17

    White males are subject to extra judicial punishment, proverbial imprisonment, and persecution just like anybody else.

    Doesn’t happen. Total BS!

  89. Adam 2019-09-20 08:00

    There’s only one way to look at this thing; South Dakota is a sea of feral primitive morons, and that’s why it is a conservative state.

    Standard laws of political physics don’t work here the same as they do almost everywhere else because of the distinct poor quality of our people.

    If Non-Republicans in SD seriously ever want a voice, they need a new and unified approach.

    Is it really THAT hard to see?

  90. leslie 2019-09-20 14:04

    Imagine Wooster suggesting this to Legislator Deb Walker, NC. She’d laugh him out of the state. Ill be there (NC) next month and bring back more details to teach SD Dems how to get some Carolina modern Democratic backbone. https://www.newsobserver.com/opinion/article234966387.html

  91. John Dale 2019-09-20 14:57

    More SDDNC financials are due out today.

  92. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-09-21 08:23

    Donald Pay said at 9/18 will stick with me: “They [the GOP, the popular people] are willing to follow the leader. If you are sticking up for the least of these, you will be rejected. Take pride in fighting for justice. It is never popular.”

    The SDGOP is not easily fooled. Wosterite infiltrators would have to engage in a long and arduous subterfuge. They would have to seek to do good for the downtrodden in tiny bits, always cloaked in specious public rationalizations. The moment a Wosterite infiltrator slipped and spoke directly of some big social goal and her real reasons for pursuing it, the SDGOP would see she’s not following the leader and kick her out.

    Living in South Dakota can be hard enough. Woster’s plan compounds that difficulty by requiring change-agents to live a lie. The Wosterite infiltrator will be trapped as surely as Mike Rounds and John Thune, having to look atrocities and injustices in the eye and shrug on a daily basis, out of party loyalty and the hope that they’ll finally win some important position and be able to make some useful changes.

    But look at Thune and Rounds. They have the most important positions one can get in the SDGOP, and they still aren’t free to act on their own moral principles (assuming they have any left).

    Do I overstate the case if I say that Thune and Rounds demonstrate the fallacy of thinking that one just has to serve enough time in the SDGOP to rise to a position where one can finally do the right thing?

  93. Porter Lansing 2019-09-21 08:38

    Cory accurately describes how heroes of history lived and acted. The American Patriots who acted like Tories, hid behind metaphorical trees, and though overwhelmingly outnumbered, overcame the British Army. And the French resistance, who pledged allegiance to the Nazis, met in secret, bombed German installations at night, and overcame their tyrannical oppressors. Guerilla Vietcong beat the most advanced military in the world with secretive attacks by night, while pretending to help Americans all day.
    Sound too much for simple South Dakota Democrats to attempt? What tyranny will take you over the tipping point? Another ballot resolution voted in by the majority and them deemed unconstitutional without a hearing? A hemp law enacted nationwide except for South Dakota?
    And, for your children, liberals. For your children who are denied adequate school funding in order to unconstitutionally fund church schools, I offer this quote. “Withholding information is the essence of tyranny. Control of the flow of information is the tool of dictatorship.” – Bruce Coville

  94. Donald Pay 2019-09-21 09:13

    Woster is a fly fisherman. He flicks out his line with what he hopes is a replica of some insect that a trout might jump for. He waits.

    Being a journalist is somewhat like fly fishing. He flicks out these interesting ideas, many of which may or may not be just tied up horsehair with a hook in it. I admit I’m a hungry trout, and I jump after that fly a lot.

    In reality, I don’t think Woster himself would move from his centrist political views. He moves easily from a moderate left on some issues to a bit right on others. He tends to value personal qualities over hard political stands. I think he thinks political stands are like the fly on the end of his line, whereas personal qualities are like the real insects floating on the creek. If you’re going to jump for something, he seems to think, it does make sense to jump for the real one. He supported Hillary over both Obama and Trump, and Sutton over Noem. He also has said he voted for McCain. Someone with that sort of voting record would not actually be comfortable in the Republican Party, especially if it was populated by a lot of people hiding their real values in order get ahead.

  95. Porter Lansing 2019-09-21 09:21

    I firmly pledge, before God and the prairie heritage, that when I return to the Black Hills to live, I will register as a Republican, engage politics in Pierre as a Republican, and vote my conscience as a Republican.
    Politics has nothing to do with being comfortable. Politics is about the tried and true adage, “The only thing constant in life is change.”

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