Is someone planning to monkey around in the Congressional race? Media company buying up Krebs related domains, and pointing them at their server.

I came across something interesting today.  Several web domains were quietly purchased on November 30th this past year in relation to the race for Congress in South Dakota…

All the domains were registered anonymously, and with privacy protection services…

…so you can’t really tell who registered the domains. Except for one thing.  Without exception, every single one of the domains are pointed to these servers: 

Interesting. That’s a name we haven’t seen for a couple of years in South Dakota statewide political campaigns.  If you aren’t familiar with productionmonkeys.com, you should be. Production Monkeys of Aberdeen, South Dakota is the media company that handled media and campaign promotion for Stace Nelson for US Senate in his third place Republican primary finish against US Senator Mike Rounds, and newly sworn-in State Representative Larry Rhoden.

You could speculate that these domains were purchased for …er, speculation on them, as Shantel Krebs could be simply musing over making a run for Congress. Or Production Monkeys might be looking to sell them to her, or preventing her from buying them herself. But there’s a couple of things that would give an indication that there’s more afoot.

First and foremost, I notice that none of these domains are parked in a generic manner.  When they registered them all this past November, instead of leaving them at the default settings, someone made sure they were directly pointed at the assigned name servers for productionmonkeys.com. So, all someone has to do is to add some numbers to DNS settings and *poof* they’re instantly live.

In addition, Kreb’s campaign aide, and office PIO Jason Williams hails from Aberdeen, the same town as Production Monkeys.  And I believe he knows the company principal, which could explain why Production Monkeys are getting the work for a possible campaign run.

Looking at the campaign finance side of things, while former PUC Commissioner and Daugaard chief of staff Dusty Johnson filed his statement of candidacy with the Federal Elections Commission on November 17th, as of today, there are currently no filings that have been made for the 2018 Congressional race to indicate anyone else is running. Yet.

I haven’t been able to suss out if there’s any partially finished web pages or videos out there, ala Paula Hawks’ ill-fated run 2 years ago.  But, at least on the surface, there definitely appears to be something afoot with all the Krebs related domains purchased on 11/30 pointing at the servers for a South Dakota media/web company who isn’t entirely unfamiliar with statewide campaigns as of late.

39 Replies to “Is someone planning to monkey around in the Congressional race? Media company buying up Krebs related domains, and pointing them at their server.”

    1. Pat Powers Post author

      Their work was fine, and I wasn’t commenting on it. I’m just noting that they have a number of domains pointed at their servers.

  1. RA

    Ha! In November Shantel, in a huff, said “There is a time for campaigning and a time for governing. Now is the time for governing.”

    I guess that time didn’t last very long.

  2. Anonymous

    Rumors around the capitol is that a draft Nelson for congress movement is afoot from his loyalists.

        1. Anonymous

          Dennert is leading the effort to draft Stace is what I was told. They are all teaming up for another hurrah.

          1. Anonymous

            In office for not much more than a day and Stace is already looking to use his legislative seat as a ladder. Typical.

                  1. Anonymous

                    Dennert is smarter than that…he came around to support Rounds after the primary…he is a smart kid and has to know Stace can’t win….

  3. Liberty Dick

    Looks like a good idea to me. Shantel has been a wonderful SOS and seems to have the attitude it takes to be a real public servant and not an empty suit trying to fill a position.

  4. grudznick

    Mr. Nelson and Ms. Krebs better hope that Mr. Rhoden runs for perhaps something else, because the Rhoden Rhangers would crush 3rd Place Stace again.

  5. Anonymous

    Shantel moving on….so that opens up another undercard race for a new Secretary of State …..any contestants????

    1. Anonymous

      I’ve heard several strong names mentioned as likely candidates. 3 that would walk away with it and 1 other. There wouldn’t likely be a contested race if any of them ran. One among the legislature, two constitutional officers and the other a former legislator.

  6. Repub

    I think Shantel has done a pretty good job in her first term. Risky move to try to jump up so soon. She will be the underdog and if she doesn’t win, she’ll be done. If I were her, I’d spend another 4 years building my name id and support in the SOS office.

    1. Anonymous

      I’m not quite sure why Dusty would be a juggernaut. I have not talked to a non political human being that supports him or really knows who he is.

      I hope 5-6 people run. Dusty will probably be 3rd if it’s the group I’m thinking of.

  7. Troy

    Just an observation on how things have changed.

    U.S Rep. Jim Abdnor began the process for POTENTIALLY running for US Senate against US Senator Geo. McGovern in Fall of 1979, made his decision in January, 1980, and announced in February, 1980 where he had a June primary and November general.

    1. Anonymous

      I’m going to disagree with you Troy. Things have not changed that much. It is more that the circumstances have changed. Republicans don’t run against Democrats anymore they run against Republicans.

      Dusty Johnson knows he is a 130lbs gorilla. Not the 800lbs gorilla Abdnor, Janklow or Thune were in their day.

      If Dennis Daugaard was going to run for an open US House seat he could wait that long because he has the money and the stature among donors to wait. Jim Abdnor could wait that long to run against McGovern because he was the 800lbs gorilla in he room. He was the natural person to challenge an incumbent Senator so he could afford to wait.

      John Thune could wait to challenge Tom Daschle because he was the 800lbs gorilla. No one else was going to beat Daschle.

      Dusty Johnson is unknown. If he waited that long to run for an open House seat he would not be able to do much. He would not raise money from the Governor’s friends, he would not build his name id adequately.

      The only reason it worked for Kristi Noem to get in late was that Nelson was a sufficiently weak candidate and Curd was not catching on. And maybe she still shouldn’t have won against Nelson. It was a unique opportunity.

      Rounds had to get into a primary in November 2014 because if he waited Kristi Noem would have entered the race a few months later and then he would be challenging her rather than running for an open seat. It was a bold move but it worked to box her out. The entire campaign was won in that moment.

      When your adversaries are Democrats you have the luxury of waiting. When you are running against Republicans then you are running to win a primary. That changes the dates.

      Dusty Johnson knows that few voters know who he is. It was 12 years ago that he won the PUC and in that race he was overshadowed by John Thune and Larry Diedrich. It’s been six years since he was on the ballot in a non competitive race. He knows he doesn’t have a million dollars in the bank like Daugaard. He has to start asking people right now to get that money and get that support. He probably knows that Shantel Krebs or Matt Michels are very formidable candidates if they run and he also knows that there are other legislators who are equally as talented as him or capable of raising money who might also run for Congress. He needs to get a head start. I don’t blame him for doing it so early. It’s the nature of this race. We have an open House seat without a Daugaard or Janklow to fill it and now is the time to run. Dusty is a hard worker but he has to start now or he won’t have the time to build the name id and raise the money.

      The House race has just become what the Govenror’s race has been for a long time. A multi year race. Barnett, Daugaard, Jackley, Mickelson all raised money long before the year they were running because they knew their opposition was Republicans not Democrats. Even Kristi had to get in before she was sworn into the House for her 4th term. It’s nuts.

  8. Troy Jones

    I don’t disagree with anything you said mostly because I think it highlights my observation (criticizes nobody in general or specific). Back in the 70’s, regardless of their “weight”, it was most common for announcements to happen after the conclusion of the Legislature. Now it is the rare.

    1. Anonymous

      heck Rounds announced BEFORE the end of the current campaign cycle…I remember he said in August of 2014 he would run int he 2016 race….that was too early…I did not like it…..at least wait until the current cycle was over in November…he made it official then but I have no problem after that….

  9. Anonymous

    Krebs would be terrible as a US House member anyone who has served with her knows she’s a liar and can never be trusted. That won’t fly in DC.

    1. Anonymous

      She could be trusted… to change her position at a moment’s notice, depending on what she thought the person wanted to hear.

  10. Pingback: And the naughty monkeys are at it again… – South Dakota War College

  11. Anonymous

    Nelson’s gaIned some weight! Somebody tell the big guy he doesn’t need to be literally the size of a bull elephant. I kid.

    First day and Nelson makes mention in the Hill, KSFY, Argus, comes off smelling like roses AND leaves some legislators with egg on their face.

    Somebody pass the popcorn!