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Senator Thune’s Staff Rebuffs Challenger Bengs at State Fair

Brian Bengs is a nice guy who wanted to talk to his U.S. Senator at the State Fair. But since he’d also like to be our next U.S. Senator, Brian Bengs didn’t get to talk to the man he’d like to replace, Senator John Thune:

Brian Bengs, tweet, 2022.09.04.
Brian Bengs, tweet, 2022.09.04.

Senator Thune had plenty of time to talk to South Dakotans at the Fair Sunday:

Senator John Thune, tweet, 2022.09.04.
Senator John Thune, tweet, 2022.09.04.
Senator John Thune, tweet, 2022.09.04.
Senator John Thune, tweet, 2022.09.04.

Senator Thune made time to talk and be photographed with a guy who beat him in a foot race 43 years ago. But Senator Thune did not have time to talk to the guy who is competing with him now in a race of far greater importance to the public. We’re not talking about a public debate—alas, we seem to have completely abandoned that great tradition of candidates facing each other and discussing important issues in front of a live audience at the State Fair or anywhere else in South Dakota. We’re just talking about an elected official taking a moment to talk one on one with a person who disagrees with him.

But no—Senator Thune is too big for that conversation, too big to even personally decline to meet with his challenger, Brian Bengs.

Related Reading: Ralph Nader says our Congress critters’ inaccessibility is Congress’s biggest problem:

…[Nader’s} primary criticism of Congress is in fact quite simple: that it’s exceedingly difficult for an average citizen to speak directly with their elected representative.

“[Members of Congress] will respond to birthdays and grandchildren and graduations give RSVP on invitations — they’re very good at that — but when it comes to serious letters … it’s reserved for people who are donors” — a word that Nader pronounces, somewhat confoundingly, with the emphasis on the second syllable (“do-NOR”). “Major lobbyists connected to major donors” — again, with the syncopated pronunciation — “they would get through.”

…As Nader pointed out, the firewall that representatives have erected between themselves and their constituents poses a real threat to the basic principles of representative democracy — and yet it remains practically invisible to the mainstream reporters who spend a significant portion of their professional lives rubbing elbows with elected representatives on Capitol Hill.

“We have a First Amendment right to petition our government, right? Well, how much is that right worth if our government never responds?” Nader says. “It’s basically a dead letter in the First Amendment — it’s done. You can’t do it” [Ian Ward, “Ralph Nader Thinks People Aren’t Paying Attention to His Progressive Agenda,” Politico, 2022.09.04].


  1. mike from iowa 2022-09-06 08:42

    Looks like Marlboro Barbie is fixing to ,grab someone’s crotch or strangle him with one hand. Does he always draw such large crowds?

  2. Loren 2022-09-06 09:07

    I don’t trust myself to even walk up to Thune. I have this pent up view of him being this spineless chameleon that I would like to discuss without receiving the usual GOP claptrap in return. I am certain any attempt at gentlemanly discourse would be wasted on this puppet!

  3. WillyNilly 2022-09-06 10:29

    I have emailed concerns to Thune multiple times over his career. All I ever get in return is a form letter stating all he has done for the people in the state. He doesn’t address concerns and I’m pretty sure he never sees anything that questions existing Republican policies. The resistance to contact with the people he is supposed to serve, other than doNORS, is a big red flag to me that it is long past due to remove him from office.

  4. Guy 2022-09-06 10:41

    John Thune is “way above, up high and far too important” than his military veteran opponent, named, Brian Bengs… or at least, in Thune’s oversized head.

  5. Adam 2022-09-06 11:05

    Ralph Nader is still one of the wisest human beings on this Earth

  6. Loren 2022-09-06 11:55

    What WillyNilly said… ditto!

  7. larry kurtz 2022-09-06 12:20

    Professor Bengs is taller than Mr. Thune so that selfie doesn’t look very good to the fashionistas in the extreme white wing of the Republican Party.

  8. Arlo Blundt 2022-09-06 18:25

    Mr. Kurtz hits the nail on the head. Senator Thune’s career has been largely built on image rather than any legislative achievement. What landmark legislation does one credit to Thune??? What critically important legislation as he authored that has had a positive impact on the lives of South Dakotans. He has recently voted against Veteran Health Care, reduced drug prices, and of course, any global warming initiative. I’d like to say he has been strong for national defense but nothing comes to mind, only his fawning over Putin. Law and Order??He has been stone silent regarding the January 6 insurrection which killed and maimed numerous Capital Policemen trying to save Mike Pence from hanging. His strong points?? Well., he’s tall, non emotional, and photogenic. I wish Mr. Bengs well as he attempts to open an open, critical civil discussion with Senator Thune on the important campaign issues in this election. He is speaking into a great void. With Thune, there is no there, there.

  9. Frank J Kloucek 2022-09-06 22:06

    Brian Bengs as our US Senator will stand for what is good and right about South Dakota. I urge you to vote for Bengs as our next Senator this fall. Brian’s outstanding character stands out as soon as you hear him speak. He has a calm demeanor and an articulate voice that resonates well in a large crowd and in one-on-one conversations. Bengs is well-qualified to serve in the U S Senate. Brian served in the US. Navy and the US. Air Force. In the Air Force, he served in the Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps. Bengs worked tirelessly to prevent and address corruption as a federal ethics advisor and prosecutor. He ensured that military decision-makers complied with the law and that they upheld the high standards expected of them. Brian will fight for regular South Dakotans by lowering taxes for the working class, fighting to protect Medicare and Social Security, and halting the monopolization of agriculture. As a former Independent himself, Brian knows that to get these things done, Republicans and Democrats must work together. Brian Bengs is a consensus builder who will bring people together for the good of our great nation.

    Frank Kloucek
    29966 423rd Ave
    Scotland South Dakota 57059
    Phone 605 583 4468 email

  10. grudznick 2022-09-06 22:17

    And with that, Mr. Bengs receives the endorsement of Mr. Kloucek and is now doomed. Doomed, I say. Mark down grudznick’s words now, read them again later, and only then understand what I am saying. Doomed.

  11. Frank J Kloucek 2022-09-07 07:43

    Your track record as the South Dakotas most ineffective blogger is still intact Grudz. Would you consider some leadership development classes to help you get past your biscuits and gravy phobia Grudz?. Brian Bengs is a class act. As our US Senator he will help make South Dakota a great state again.

  12. Bob Newland 2022-09-07 08:19

    Even Kloucek felt compelled to respond to the fake person and cowardly grudznutz as if it were human. SMH.

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