Another former Republican legislator wants Jamie Smith in and Kristi Noem out. Stanford Adelstein, who represented Rapid City in the Legislature from 2001 through 2006 and from 2009 through 2012 (and who also spends good money to support Dakota Free Press), urges all South Dakotans to replace Noem with a real leader:
South Dakota deserves better than being kicked around by Noem’s cronies who care nothing for us. We deserve TRUE leadership that is representative of our South Dakota values.
We can show Noem that all her bullying and out-of-state money can’t buy our election. We can vote her OUT on Nov. 8 [Stanford Adelstein, “How Low Will She Go Noem’s Campaign Attack Ad Smears Respected Community Leader, Shows Lack of Decency,” South Dakota Standard, 2022.10.20].
Adelstein’s endorsement of Smith is far from the first time Adelstein has troubled his party leadership. Adelstein spoke out for Noem’s Democratic opponent, Billie Sutton, in the 2018 gubernatorial campaign.
Adelstein bases his missive against Noem on one of her numerous attack ads, this one featuring a 2020 Twitter pic that Smith posted of himself with Black Lives Matter protestors in Sioux Falls on May 31, 2020, that Team Noem manipulates to make Smith look like he supported violence that broke out in the Empire Mall parking lot in Sioux Falls after that peaceful protest. Another Sioux Falls man in the photo, Vaney Hariri, asked the Noem campaign to remove his image from the ad, as he did not consent to the use of this public photo by the Noem campaign.
Hariri has not consented to my use of this public photo on Dakota Free Press, either, but I post this public photo along with the video showing Noem’s use of this public photo so readers may compare the images and draw their own conclusions:
Adelstein concludes that Noem chose this photo for her ad as an unsubtle racist smear meant to appeal to her fearful apartheidist base:
Again! What did Mr. Hariri do to deserve this attack? He had his photo taken with Jamie Smith, who attended the event with an expression of caring and concern about the people he wants to represent. Yet many people have taken photos with Jamie, and Noem doesn’t feature them in disturbing ads.
What, specifically, about Mr. Hariri merited having his image in an attack ad, then zoomed in — to make sure we didn’t miss it? Hmmm [Adelstein, 2022.10.20].
The major point is not the use of the photo but the racist lie Noem tells for political advantage. Smith and Hariri did not participate in or promote violence on May 31, 2020, in Sioux Falls. Smith and Hariri stood up for justice and equality along with millions of Americans who were outraged at deadly police violence against minorities while Kristi Noem stuck her head in the sand and told Black Lives Matter protestors to shut up. Kristi Noem now tries to portray Smith, Hariri, and anyone else who speaks up for justice and equality as dangerous extremists instead of concerned neighbors who want to make South Dakota a better place for everybody.
And in this case, that point is being made by a former Republican Senator who recognizes that South Dakota would be better off with a Democratic Governor who cares about all South Dakotans.