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Jean Rounds: Never Mind Tariffs—We’ve Got God and Guns!

Senator Mike Rounds dispatches his wife Jean to put her name to a fundraising letter for his reelection campaign as well as a little fluffy flack to keep farmers from fretting all the damage Il Duce is doing to agriculture.

Jean Rounds gives glancing acknowledgment to the fact that the Trump tariffs are bad for South Dakota producers:

My family raises Charolais cattle and so I often get an earful on commodity prices and tariffs. To be honest, I don’t disagree with these concerns. Cattle prices plummet because of one packer fire in Kansas? I’m no market expert, but it just doesn’t seem right, does it? [Jean Rounds, campaign fundraising e-mail, 2019.09.18]

I’m no more of an expert on cattle prices than Jean Rounds, but other observers indicate that the price swings that happened when a Tyson Foods plant in Holcomb, Kansas, caught fire on August 9 were markets doing what markets do… unlike the tariffs, which are acts of one man who thinks he’s God and which tax American buyers for doing what markets do.

But Jean Rounds has not time for a serious exploration of the free market or a serious exploration of her hubby’s inaction thereupon. She must hurry along to her main point, which is to minimize actual political and economic concerns and fluffily encourage us to trust in Jesus and her shutgun-toting boys!

One thing is for certain, there is always something to completely disrupt our lives and plans… this summer has been filled with those moments.  But, at the end of the day, what we’ve also realized this summer is that it’s the little things that matter most. These struggles that we all face, we face them together. What we’ve learned is that South Dakota is one big family and one local community.
I’ve come to lean on Matthew 6 a lot lately. Verse 25 says; “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?”
Scattered around in the wheat and corn fields that we’re worried about – stand my kids, grandkids and my husband holding shotguns! They’re laughing, enjoying God’s creation, and even managed to bag a few doves. Today, that’s what I see and treasure. The other “stuff” took a backseat to the things and the people that are important [Jean Rounds, 2019.09.18].
Never mind actual policy problems that actual policymakers could do something about: just praise God and guns, and send my hubby money! That’s what counts as high political discourse from the South Dakota Republican Party.


  1. mike from iowa 2019-09-20 07:11

    Nothing shows devotion to dog’s love than slaughtering the bird of peace. That’s scripture, I’ll bet. It kinda bothers me when honest, hard working men and women lose their homes and farms due to the myopic stoopidity of Drumpf. Easy come easy go. Moar of those little things in life like turning the dove slaughtering weapon of mass destruction on themselves because they can’t cope with the little things in life anymore.

    Nice to know that families with golden parachutes (generous government paychecks/benefits and subsidies) can still enjoy the little things in life.

  2. o 2019-09-20 10:52

    Identity politics versus governance: we see which our elected leaders lean on for support. At some point there HAS to be an acceptance that you have won the popularity contest and now must do the work you were elected to do (for the people who elected you to do it).

  3. 96Tears 2019-09-20 13:17

    May God bless her pointed little head!

    I got the same letter and was saddened that Jean got talked into putting her name on this piece of junk. Clearly written by a flack on Rounds’ campaign staff, the letter touches little buttons that put the blame of things gone wrong on somebody else and reaffirms “aw, gosh!” GOP values like guns.

    Smilin’ Mike is going to ride the sympathy surfboard of his wife’s cancer with the same grace and dignity that he ran out the clock while the AG and his legislators stonewalled all attempts to expose the racketeering done under his nose with Gear Up and EB-5.

    Rounds is the luckiest schmuck in South Dakota political history. And he WILL get away with it again.

  4. Debbo 2019-09-20 20:40

    Mike, your first comment is excellent.

    I read about the FSM rev in Alaska yesterday. He wore his Holy Colander on his head and his prayer is absolutely hilarious! Funniest thing I’ve read in days. He didn’t close with “Amen.” You’ll have to follow the link to find out what word he used. 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  5. jerry 2019-09-20 23:20

    So Jean, why are military Christians going to Saudi Arabia to defend these same folks who killed 3,000 of us on our own soil? Why do you suppose your husband is all in on this wag the dog thingy? Pray tell, how will this be seen by those folks in the sand box as we have been bombed out of Saudi Arabia before. The presence of infidels so close to Mecca inspired the hatred of those that flew the planes into the Trade Center. Have ye forgotten? God and guns, for what purpose? Profit perhaps?

    I wonder if Saudi Arabia will now quit the Sharia Law thingy your husband is so worried about that they do there, what do you think Jean? Ask your husband, the louse that put you up to sending out this idiocy with your name on it.

  6. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-09-21 07:46

    96, should an opposition candidate be out there now blasting holes in Jean and Mike’s baloney, or can a candidate wait and ambush Rounds with a late entry in March… or maybe even in July as an alternative-party convention nominee?

  7. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-09-21 07:47

    Jenny is asking the questions Scyller Borglum should ask right now, publicly and frequently.

  8. 96Tears 2019-09-21 09:29

    If there was an operative State Party, it would be their job to shake the teflon off Rounds who using this quiet period to appear in freebie public service ads and mail campaign letters to inoculate his negatives early in the game.

    In our state, Republicans run different campaigns for the statehouse and for Congress. In statehouse elections, no news is good news, even if nothing is getting done. Rounds was a master of this. Any controversies got tamped down quietly and shoved out of sight. Reporters in Pierre would typically develop trouble recognizing an issue if a Democrat raises it but seldom failed to line up for press releases from the governor’s overpaid press secretaries. The effect was a table devoid of scraps or crumbs for a Democrat running for Governor or constitutional offices to use in a campaign while their Republican opponents ran rose garden campaigns.

    Congress had been trickier. Daschle and Johnson ran strong constituent service operations from their field offices and used their incumbencies to develop positive issues on ag, senior citizens, Indians, health care systems, etc., and amplified their efforts in ads usually using voters from both parties testifying about their effectiveness. Republicans would typically run the angriest ads they could develop and slash away at those horrible liberals. In his run against Daschle, Thune and his army of third-party attackers slashed away with personal attacks on Daschle, his wife, his house (laughable now that everybody knows housing is ridiculously expensive in D.C.) and anything else they could invent. I remember Thune sneering at Daschle in the NBC Meet the Press debate that Tom should stop acting like a victim. Well-played, John!

    With 2020 coming up and a massively nasty GOP campaign strategy in the works to make Trump palatable for another four years, Rounds must be a bit worried. His only comfort is the Democrats are broke and impossibly out of grasp of gaining much traction before spring 2020.

    His preference is to run another rose garden campaign, which he did right after the opposition collapsed from incompetence in the 2014 GOP Senate primary. But the loud, angry, racist, full-throated hate machine Trump needs poses some risks. Should Rounds join the angry fray … which risks owning up to the fact he got zero done except watch Trump destroy our ag economy with the tariffs and the lies about supporting ethanol? Should Rounds run a quiet rose garden campaign … which leaves the Democrat to define the issues (which still includes EB-5 and Gear Up corruption) — if he or she can raise enough money?

    And while talking about it, why was Thune and the GOP DC leadership in Moscow conducting talks with Kremlin moguls on July 4, 2018? Now that we know Trump has been blackmailing the Ukraine for political support in 2020 against the Democrats, it makes that July 4 meeting a lot more suspicious. Maybe our junior senator should find out what our senior senator has been doing cutting more political deals with our nation’s enemies!

    Moderate Republicans in South Dakota will probably vote for Trump if the election was held today, but they can’t hide their shame that their party has fallen badly because of the goofball. So, to answer your question, this IS the time to soften up Rounds. He is a zero on any accomplishments because his pals Moscow Mitch and Putin’s Bitch (Trump) forced him to stand in line and stand down. They are now officially putting social security and medicare on the chopping block. Rounds makes no attempt to buck the party bosses, so there you are!

    Finally, it’s interesting to see the freebie public service ad being used to prop up Dusty Johnson. It looks like an standard public service ad about the opioid crisis with a clumsy job of patching Dusty in the ad saying something needs to be done. Pure hokum.

  9. Eve Fisher 2019-09-21 09:41

    I have to say that the letter she signed is no more pie-eyed, rah-rah, uninformative and generally impractical as 99% of the letters I’ve received from Senator Rounds directly.

    Meanwhile, I’m just stunned by the way so many farmers say, “Something had to be done” about China. Really? What bothered you before? That you had markets for your soybeans? Did you feel that you weren’t getting paid enough for your soybeans? How does it feel to not get paid at all for your soybeans? Especially while they’re rotting in the field from the “Chinese hoax” of climate change induced flooding?

    Asking for a friend.

  10. jerry 2019-09-21 21:56

    Eve Fisher just nailed it. “What bothered you before about China?” As one of your invisible friends, I would say two things, 1. Chinese are much like Mexicans in that both work hard and long hours to accomplish much. Farmers wish they could have Chinese to work the CAFO’s for squat, but Chinese are too damn smart for that, (Found that out building America’s railroads with the Irish). 2. Chinese people know arithmetic. Apparently South Dakota farmers lack that knowledge, else they would be raising hell regarding the subtraction from their bottom line that they cannot seem to figure out. Hint, it’s called the old Republican screwing, get used to it.

    Yes, farmers, you have the guns that everyone else has…big deal. Was it worth losing the farm over? I don’t think God loves a damn fool, She kinda expects you to have some kind of responsibility.

  11. Debbo 2019-09-21 23:04

    If you’re sick of SD, are finding God, guns and the GOP not enough, there’s a business in a small town on the Mississippi River in Minnesota for you. You’ll make concrete statues and do $250,000 in business annually. There’s plenty of room to grow it and it’s recession proof because it’s statues of heroes.

    Seriously, the owners are getting old and their children have lives of their own.

  12. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-09-25 20:07

    Indeed, Eve: if Jean Rounds walked up to farmers in 2016 and said, “Hey, if you vote for Trump next year, he will cut off your access to the Chinese markets, tax your steel and other inputs, and drive some of your into bankruptcy,” how many farmers would still have voted for him?

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