Coming after criticism over “spreading misinformation” after the tornado that struck in Sioux Falls (which comes after criticism for her grandstanding antics) Sioux Falls City Councilwoman Theresa Stehly stands to face her strongest challenge as former State Legislator Alex Jensen moves towards launching a race for the at-large Sioux Falls City Council race.
Jensen, who in both his primary and general state legislative elections, was known for running a very strong campaign effort in the past. With the twin challenges of both negative public perception surrounding herself, and a strong opponent who knows how to do the work of taking her on, what does that leave the embattled and criticized Councilwoman Stehly to do?
Last night on the SouthDacola website, whose author Scott Ehrisman is attached to Theresa Stehly’s hip (or at least, his nose to another part of her anatomy) and serves as her advisor, floated this:
There has been a rumor circulating that Stehly is considering a run for District 14 Senate. Deb Soholt will be term limited so Stehly could run for that seat in 2020.
As we both know, Stehly hasn’t decided to run for re-election on the city council, so maybe a run for the state legislature is more appealing to her.
In the face of Jensen, who is sure to be a strong opponent, Theresa is trying to gauge how exiting the council and running for the Legislature might be taken. What would that campaign slogan be? “Theresa Stehly – Because the legislature needs more grandstanding and dysfunction.”
Word is that State Representative Larry Zikmund is looking at that office, and if not him, GOP County Vice Chair Tyler Swanger ran for it before and would likely give it another shot. I’ve also heard rumors of others with an interest in the seat being vacated.
Even if Stehly survived that gauntlet, she’d likely face Democrat Erin Healy in the fall of 2020 who pulled off a surprise win in the House, and would likely be pushed by Democrats to leap to the open seat with the backing of her allies in the Democrat party.
If Stehly wants to jump contests to avoid a tough race where she might get beaten up, guess what? The District 14 State Senate contest isn’t going to be it. In fact, she’d get the pleasure of back to back contests where she’ll be beaten up.