From the Yankton Press and Dakotan, Yankton resident and Lt. Governor Matt Michels actually IS thinking about a run for the big chair. But even he admits the clock is running out on getting in:
When it comes to his political future, Lt. Gov. Matt Michels finds himself racing against the clock.
The Yankton attorney says he must decide soon whether to run for governor in 2018, even though more than two years remain on his term.
“I need to make a decision in two months, maybe within a month,” he told the Press & Dakotan. “I don’t like making a decision 2 1/2 years ahead of the election, but that’s just the way it is.”
Michels cited two major factors forcing an early decision: the process of organizing a campaign, and other candidates already positioning themselves for a gubernatorial run.
“You just need a lot of time to put an organization together,” he said. “And we still have to get through another legislative session (in 2017).”
And as Matt Michels realizes, there’s a finite number of resources available to put a winning campaign together, as well as a finite number of competent people available to assemble into a winning organization.
There are volunteers, donors and staffers coalescing around Marty Jackley and Mark Mickelson already. Congresswoman Kristi Noem would come in with a team battle hardened and ready to go from having to do it all over again every two years.
Matt’s challenge would be to start building that nucleus and put together a team when many possible people in his current Daugaard heavy universe would already be gravitating towards Mark Mickelson, given the status of Linda Mickelson Graham as the Governor’s campaign treasurer.
If he was looking to party regulars, Marty Jackley already has a strong relationship with party maven and political regular Jason Glodt, as well as many others who Jackley has cultivated relationships with.
Lacking a staff of seasoned campaign veterans can happen. This last election cycle, US Senate Candidate Stace Nelson lamented to one seasoned political veteran who he had tried to recruit (but turned him down) that “all of the good ones are taken,” leaving him to try to assemble a campaign team without the benefit of anyone with statewide experience. Which showed in several campaign missteps.
I suspect that the Lt Governor would ultimately be able to find people to join his cause, simply for the reason that the affable Michels is one of the nicest people you’d ever want to know. He’s a good guy in a profession that has many practitioners with very sharp elbows.
And sometimes, that’s enough.