Is Johnson running again?

David Montgomery ponders this thought over on Political Smokeout based on SDDP Chairman BJ Nesselfluff’s recent comments

?Everything I have seen indicates he is running. He is raising money, he is getting out and visiting every corner of the state. If the Democrats hold the (Senate) majority (beyond 2012), and he continues to be chairman of the banking committee, that would be a darn tough thing to walk from. Especially for South Dakota, that relies so heavily on the banking industry, to have him walk away from that, I think would be detrimental to the state potentially,? Nesselhuf said.

The simple answer is no. This is my reasoning. Mike Rounds. And if Mike Rounds doesn’t run, Kristi Noem will. In 2002 Johnson and Thune clashed, but Johnson was still in his prime and held on to a narrow victory. In 2008 due to his unfortunate health problems, Johnson wasn’t nearly the candidate he had been in years past but drew a lucky hand with a favorable climate and weak GOP opponent. The climate in South Dakota has drifted substantially to favor Republicans since ’08, and both Noem and Rounds are big league candidates Johnson would have to work very hard to defeat.

The MDR blog also highlighted an interesting trinket back in February that stuck out to me as one of the major reasons Senator Johnson will not run again.

But if Mike (Rounds) and Tim (Johnson) end up on the same ballot for the same office, it would be great contest to observe. Neither man has ever lost a race for office and both are rather proud of that fact.

Strangely, it is my belief that any Republican would prefer to run against Tim Johnson rather than Stephanie Herseth Sandlin or even his son Brendan Johnson. Johnson’s voting record has drifted far left in this final term.

18 Replies to “Is Johnson running again?”

  1. Just Call Me Joe

    I sense that his presiding over this commerce committee banking hearing is a trial balloon to test whether the public perceives that he has the leadership capability to continue to serve. I’m anxious to see how he does….

  2. The Truth

    Johnson won’t be able to handle Rounds. Noem is a decent option as well. But hey, go ahead Tim, run…

  3. Anonymous

    Time for Johnny and Tune to step down they are both proffesional politicians Thune wants a balance budget but yet wants the AG PROGMAN.You republicans are so hypocritical, cut ag programs completely then we will know your fiscal your scared to do it.

  4. Oldguy

    TJ is not dumb. He did what he had to so he could become and stay chairman of the Banking Committee but the next election he will pay the price as the republicans will make sure all his votes are out their for all to see. Funny thing about that is the bankers in South Dakota that I have talked to all say TJ has hurt the banking industry in South Dakota.TJ is proud to have never lose a race and he also knows how tough MR would be as well as MR knows the issues. Can you imagine MR and TJ at a debate? TJ will retire a winner!

    1. Anonymous

      The big bankers in SD are Republicans. Tim Johnson has not given them everything they want, nor is he a Republican – so they grouse about him. But what it comes down to is that any savvy business person knows you need to hedge your bets and keep on good terms with politicians in both parties. Tim Johnson has been there when the bankers needed him even though he hasn’t been a total pushover.

      1. Oldguy

        I have never asked my banker friends if they were a rep. or a dem because it never mattered to me. Tell me does the new rules affect a dem. bank different than a rep. one?

  5. Bree S.

    If we’re not going to post with real names, could we please post with some nicknames? Even “Anonymous 1” and “Anonymous 2” would make the conversation easier to understand. Although a heated discussion between “Spongebob Squarepants” and “Flash Gordon” could be interesting.

  6. Katzy

    Would he allow debates this time??? Would people be allowed to criticize him this time around??? How is the sympathy vote running next year? I predict he won’t run again. He shouldn’t have run last time.

  7. Troy Jones Post author

    Politically, I hope the Democrat nominee for Senate is Johnson.

    He has a record he will not be able to run from. For most of his career, he was a moderate and successfully appealed to some Republicans. In he last four years, he has been one of the most reliable supporters of Obama and liberal causes.

    Plus, this time he will have to engage in a vigorous campaign against a well-funded opponent (be it Rounds or Noem). Capabilities he has not shown he could sustain.

    However, he will not run but is giving every indication of running for two reasons:

    1) Not being perceived as a lame duck to his colleagues.
    2) Keeping us all guessing. 🙂

    Personally, I think it time for him to retire. And embarrassing defeat will damage his legacy. As one who has served our state for over a quarter century, I would prefer just saying thank you with a nice note and not a defeat at the ballot box.

    How big a defeat will it be? Bigger than Abdnor’s 19% defeat of McGovern. And, since that is the biggest margin in state history by which an incumbent has been beat, I’d prefer Abdnor to keep that honor.

  8. Ned the Head

    Tim is ready to retire. He has been a public servant for many years; and, has clearly had a following as he has never been defeated. I do agree that this last term has been a lot different than prior ones. He is becoming out of touch. I think his last 4 years illustrates all too well the “line in the sand” mentality that exists. A moderate Dem from SD has jumped ship to ultra liberal causes after 20+ years of being a moderate. That is not a good sign and shows how unwilling the parties are in working together. I really hope Rounds runs. We need to quit fooling ourselves with Noem. She is not cut out for the Senate. Do I think she could win? Yes, but that doesn’t mean I want her there. Give me Rounds.

  9. Anonymous

    It is much more fun and interesting to read comments that are not a sign of hate……….. If we disagree so be it but keeping it a semi polite conversation is much more fun than those who have to use the hate. Maybe some of these writers even go to church on Sunday or other days of the week. It would be nice to see society as a whole going back to the basics of religion and treat all with respect and dignity.

    1. Bob Ellis

      It would be nicer still to see society as a whole and people in specific stop promoting evil and excusing those who do. If we hold fast to what is good and hate evil, we’ll all be better off for it. Genuine love doesn’t stand idly by while deceivers and promoters of what is wrong hurt themselves and others. (Psalm 97:10, Ezekiel 3:18-19, Romans 12:9)

    2. Katzy

      If anon’s comment here is directed at me, I don’t hate him. I do not like the politics involved with his last campaign, which did not allow a true discussion of issues or abilities. Any individual of any political party should be willing to acknowledge when he is or is not able to competently perform the job he is seeking, but that did not happen last time. The Dems needed him to keep his seat in DC as the 60th vote, and they did not allow a fair campaign, pure and simple. Johnson is a nice guy probably (I have never met him) but in the interests of the people of SD he should not have run last time. I do not hate him. However, I do not like the politics involved here.

  10. Anonymous

    not agreeing is not hate…. to me hate is everything is negative and total respect for having a idea that some totally dislike. Why do we need to express hate? Why do we not have a solution to a problem and willing to say the solution is better than the other expressed solution. Politicians are fearful of making a statement they can not back away from if they think they will loose votes. Both R and D’s do the same. That portion is not a party issue.