Press "Enter" to skip to content

Haugaard Copies National Conservatives’ Tilt Against “Big Business”

Governor Kristi Noem’s spin machine is eagerly portraying GOP primary challenger Representative Steven Haugaard as opposing business. (Steve, quick: tweet back that you’re not against business; you’re against Noem’s monkey business!)

But when Haugaard says Noem has “bowed to Big Business,” he’s just aping the new line coming from arch-conservatives who have lost their faith in capitalists to continue supporting Haugaardian radical right-wing theocracy:

“Massive corporations are pursuing a common and mutually agreed upon agenda to destroy American freedom,” attorney Ashley Keller told a gathering of the most powerful legal organization in America last Saturday.

…“Defenders of freedom must face reality,” Keller insisted, before adding the nation’s top advocacy group for big business to his list of enemies. “The Chamber of Commerce is not our friend. The C-suite grandees who finance it are not our friends either. They were erstwhile allies of convenience — and they are now the enemies of a freedom-loving people.”

…Keller is a Harvard graduate who clerked on the Supreme Court of the United States, and his audience was the Federalist Society, an organization whose members dominate the federal judiciary and especially the nation’s highest court [Ian Millhiser, “The Federalist Society’s Newest Enemy: Corporate America,” Vox, 2021.11.18].

For conservatives like Haugaard, letting corporations do whatever they want is a deeply cherished political principle, as long as they do what conservatives want. But when corporations start responding to market signals by bending toward Obama/King justice, conservatives abandon that principle and back big government.

Yet, rather than waiting for the hand of the market to deliver an invisible spanking to “woke” corporations, speaker after speaker at the Federalist Society’s convention called for a central planner to intervene. As it turns out, the society’s commitment to something as foundational as free market capitalism may be secondary to its desire to own the libs [Millhiser, 2021.11.18].

In this regard, Haugaard is no different from Noem. Both Noem and Haugaard will support big business as long as big business supports their personal priorities. When big business turns against their priorities (be they poll numbers, campaign donations, or maybe even the occasional lingering firmly held belief), both Noem and Haugaard will talk like trust-busting progressives.


  1. ArloBlundt 2021-11-18 11:45 boils down to “Is right wing wing nut politics with its emphasis on chaos and controversy good for business ?” The answer is ?Not any better than AntiFa style protest and chaos.” Big Business likes Eisenhower’s America.

  2. Mark Anderson 2021-11-18 13:22

    Well Arlo, as log as your Matt Gaetzing Antifa I’ve got the t-shirt for you, it’s long sleeve black with rainbow colors and it says Antifa in Runic. It’s undercover all the way and stealing back Runic from the multitude of crazies on the right. Thor’s success has had its weird offshoots, unfortunately. Its great to sit on the porch while wearing and have a nice glass of red wine. It’s fighting for freedom leisurely. Especially this time of year, last year I used just blue lights and put up a blue wave across the front of our house for Christmas. Its always nice to ride a blue wave.

  3. Donald Pay 2021-11-18 13:40

    I appreciate the conservative tilt against “big business” in some aspects, and not in others. Conservatives do have a healthy skepticism about big institutions, and the power they wield. I think, in general, that skepticism is warranted more from a standpoint of labor, workplace safety, environmental protection and anti-competitive practices,. Conservatives don’t really care much about those issues. Also businesses have a lopsided ability to influence legislation through lobbying, campaign finance, and government corruption, but most conservatives aren’t that interested in those standpoints, either. They only really care about social issues or what they define as “freedom,” and which I think is more “the freedom to be a-holes and irresponsible.”

    I worked fairly well with conservatives in South Dakota, even though we disagreed on a number of things. We were often on the same side (generallly aginners) of issues from the Oahe Project to ETSI to nuclear waste, to big landfills, to big pig poop factories. It was big business interests who wanted to turn South Dakota into a cesspool, and conservatives who stood with progressives to fight off these projects.

    I’ve never understood the need to hate or bully people, to look down on people who don’t agree with your position, and especially to support legislation that seeks to prevent people different from you from enjoying basic human rights, like being who you are and marrying who you want. That’s where I start to appreciate “big business.” Whether it’s market forces or wanting everyone to feel comfortable buying from you and selling to you, business can be and often is a liberating force.

    So, I understand both sides of this issue, and I understand that the person who is my ally on one issue may be my enemy on another, and vice versa.

  4. mike from iowa 2021-11-18 14:19

    Antifa is the antithesis of Prowd Bois, white scumacysts, three percenters and are as peaceful as the pigs and the magats allow them to be.

    Antifa shows up where the bad guys show up.

  5. mike from iowa 2021-11-18 14:22

    OT, convicted of murder, but likely innocent, Julius Jones received clemency today, the date scheduled for his unjust execution,. from Okie guv.

  6. O 2021-11-18 15:21

    Nobody, not even big business allies, are above the theocratic dogma of the new Right. After all, business is still the industry of man; the commands of God (as filtered through that new Right lens) are above man. There is ALMOST an element of old-style political/religious affiliation going on here; unfortunately it has the perversion of the past 100 years of right wing pruning providing its direction keeping it 180 degrees from where it was a century ago.

  7. ArloBlundt 2021-11-18 17:54

    Well…thank you Mike from Iowa. Fox News is thrashing about trying to revive its audience post Trump…I wondered what happened to that Michelle Malkin who was one of the “young moderns” on Fox late night. Gives me more respect for AntiFa that they are challenging the Nazis in NYC.

  8. John 2021-11-18 18:14

    Haugaard and noem are different sides of the same coin, the same radical coin.
    If there is a moderate republican . . . one could enter the gubernatorial primary, allow the radicals to kill each other and walk away with the nomination.

    In an oped, “It’s not Polarization: It’s Radicalization” Rubin, nails the differences between the parties and the differences among republicans.

    Rubin reminds us that one party embraces violence, lies, intimidation, and ridiculous wasteful theories of voter fraud, et al.
    Rep Johnson also fully embraces this republican support of violence and intimidation when he voted against the censure of Rep gosar.
    A Rep from Pennsylvania quipped that she believed Rep gosar – he told us who he was and we should believe him. Rep Johnson also told us who he is.

  9. jerry 2021-11-18 18:16

    Haugaard is a brown shirt just like NOem… One has high heels.

  10. grudznick 2021-11-18 18:22

    Mr. Haugaard, the overgodder, will end up making Ms. Noem seem more rational and moderate than she is when she goes to mop the floor with the democrat candidate, assuming there is one. Mr. Heinert will likely not step forward and open himself to the level of scrutiny that would be served to him on a large Chinet Classic® Dinner Plate. Neither would Mr. Nesiba, he of the pants fiasco.

    Mr. Haugaard will only serve to make Ms. Noem come across as a reasonable young lady when she stands next to him at the podiums.

  11. Porter Lansing 2021-11-18 18:27

    I’ve never lived in a state where the majority of the populace care and know less about politics than South Dakota.

    As we all well know, there are only a handful of commenters on both political blogs.

    Most South Dakotans are likely to be found in a bar, where it’s frowned upon to speak of politics.

    Maybe that’s why there’s such apathy.

    People vote Republican because it means “little to zero change” and that’s easier than learning about new things and ideas.

  12. grudznick 2021-11-18 18:44

    Indeed, Mr. Lansing. Indeed.

  13. happy camper 2021-11-18 19:28

    In an interview with South Dakota Public Radio, Jon Hunter, the former owner-publisher of the Madison Daily Leader spends some time with the notion most South Dakotans are moderates who are not given moderate candidates as an option. I would like to agree with him but our state is so incredibly pro-Trump that Noem has been riding his ugly coat tails. He doesn’t think a Democrat has a chance but believes other Republicans will enter the fray because Noem, regardless of her huge war chest, has been weakened by all of her misdeeds. Let’s hope a more moderate Republican decides to take her on and exposes all her dirt.

  14. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-11-18 19:38

    South Dakotans have been given moderate Democrats as options since the Daschle/Johnson/Herseth days. See also: Billie Sutton.

  15. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-11-18 19:39

    Porter, is there proportionally more blog activity in other states?

  16. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-11-18 19:40

    Donald, I’m waiting for Haugaard and his fellow travelers to get serious about their critique of corporate influence and reject Citizens United and corporate personhood.

  17. Vi Kingman 2021-11-18 20:00

    What freedoms are being taken away?

  18. happy camper 2021-11-18 23:09

    We are a center-right country. South Dakota is center-right-right state. Thune exploited Tom’s mistake of saying he was a DC resident. Sutton made the mistake of saying he believed South Dakota should have a state income tax. Johnson had a stroke. Herseth was more qualified but Noem had more sex appeal. She’s a beauty queen without much else going for her but it reflects today’s electorate.

  19. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-11-19 06:34

    I’m not sure what Hap’s statement of various candidate characteristics has to do with my statement that Jon Hunter is wrong when he says South Dakotans haven’t been offered moderate candidates. The SDDP consistently offers moderate candidates for statewide office.

    And “South Dakota is a center-right-right state”? Results on ballot measures, when we get people away from partisan labels and personalities, suggest otherwise.

  20. larry kurtz 2021-11-19 06:43

    David Montgomery tweeted some reality day before yesterday.

    He wrote, “Similar to many one-party-dominant states, the big political divide in #sdleg is not “Democrat v. Republican” but “Republican v. Republican,” whether you name the factions “far right v center-right,” “conservative v moderate,” “establishment v populist” or “pragmatist v purist.”” And, “South Dakota has long had conservative, anti-establishment Republican legislators who oppose the state’s GOP governors as liberal squishes. The difference now is Noem’s national profile means this longtime tension is no longer just parochial.”

  21. happy camper 2021-11-19 07:14

    There are specific reasons why those candidates lost or left office, but Jon was also referring to the Republican side when saying we don’t get moderate candidates, but today, simply being a Democrat in South Dakota will be a difficult hill to climb. But I agree Cory, on the issues themselves, even in our very red state, they will vote moderately. However, if Dems take up the cause there is that hyper-partisan, tribal mentality we’re experiencing right now to overcome, if that’s possible. Of course that’s wrong but you’re also a part of it, and Mike who hates all Republicans, and most of the commenters who constantly attack. The “Repubs” are just as bad but it’s a political crisis that you participate in a state they hold almost all the power. If I were a religious person I would be praying every night for this country, instead I’ve sought to understand the dynamics. The Social Dilemma on Netflix explains it the best but I don’t know how we’re gonna get away from these two sides who are in a fight or flight mentality every moment of the day. People are moving to South Dakota for safety, they’re very willing to admit that, Ds and Rs don’t matter to me, but D is the kiss of death here, so we just need a moderate, electable candidate to push Noem out. Let’s hope Jon is right that others will enter the race. Now that he has retired maybe your man Hunter, in the name of discourse, would share more of his thoughts here if you reached out to him.

  22. larry kurtz 2021-11-19 07:32

    As a thirty year volunteer for DSCC, DCCC and DLCC charged with South Dakota as a territory I am often called a liberal by Trumpettes on Faceberg but liberals want to convert GOPers or convince them to be kinder and gentler. Me? As a progressive I’m actually working to destroy the Republican Party and erase it from the collective cultural memory.

    The civil war inside the SDGOP will ultimately drive principled conservatives and ideological purists into more general elections siphoning votes from establishment Republicans because the Balkanization of American politics especially in northern tier red states. So, the redistricting drama was a ruse to distract voters from the rabid dysfunction within the fractured South Dakota Republican Party and even compromised with Democrats to shut them up. Little wonder Lee Schoenbeck runs everything in Pierre.

  23. happy camper 2021-11-20 07:30

    He’s a local boy with an incredible education. At least he has qualifications.

    From his web page: Steve Haugaard was raised on a family farm near Madison, South Dakota. He attended South Dakota State University earning his Bachelor of Science degree in multiple fields of study, including Engineering, Sociology, Psychology, Criminal Justice, and Political Science.

    He has been married to the love of his life, Mary, for 44 years and they have 8 children and 20 grandchildren.

    He attended law school at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington where he earned his Juris Doctor degree.

    Steve has practiced law in Sioux Falls since 1983. He has maintained a general practice with a mix of in-office client services as well as litigation spanning everything from civil to criminal to administrative practice.

Comments are closed.