Just caught wind of an interesting little rumor making the rounds the past few days. Allegedly, Daugaard’s Chief of Staff Dusty Johnson is actively laying the ground work for a congressional run if Noem chooses to seek Tim Johnson’s senate seat in 2014. The source also told me that he has dropped hints of already seeking Senator Thune’s backing if he were to run. The source did not say if Dusty had sought Noem’s backing.
This is all coming on the heels of a speech Dusty gave in Huron at the annual Beadle County Lincoln Day Dinner, a “Washington is broken” style of speech. The speech reportedly left many in attendance wondering why the Chief of Staff to the Governor was more focused on the problems in DC rather than advocating for the Governor’s policies and the issues facing our state.
He compared his experience with today?s political climate in Washington.
?I get that annoyed, I get that frustrated almost every time I think about the ridiculous regulations of Washington, D.C.,? said Johnson.
He talked about the current administration?s lack of leadership regarding to health-care reform, financial reform, and economic leadership. The current administration?s reforms have contributed to the mounting U.S. debt, he said.
?Although I hardly ever hear it said, it?s true: Our per capita debt right now is higher than the per capita debt in Greece. Now that?s ridiculous financial leadership,? said Johnson.
He specifically referenced the ridiculousness of the 947-page Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and the 848-page Dodd?Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.
Both acts have cost jobs lost for not only thousands of Americans, but also hundreds of South Dakotans.
Johnson’s speech only seemed to pour gasoline on the rumors already swirling around the Capitol and across the state.
Word has it that he is not the only person looking into the possibility of an open House seat. He’s presumably not even the only person in the same office. Daugaard’s chief legal council, Jim Seward, is purported to be actively interested in running for congress if Noem moves into the senate race. Seward, with his military and legal background, would also offer a very compelling choice for an open house seat.
The big question, however, is whether Noem intends to jump into a senate race with former Governor Mike Rounds who himself has been dropping unsubtle hints about interest in running for the senate seat currently held by Tim Johnson.
The only thing certain is that congresswoman Kristi Noem holds the fate of many political hopefuls with regard to her future decisions. (And yes, I’m assuming she wins handily in 2012.)