Any predictions for tonight? It’s going to be a red wave, but how high will it crest for some candidates?

All of that work for the past 2 years is going to come to fruition today.  It’s time. If you haven’t voted yet, get out there and do so.

And here’s your opportunity for your predictions on how the races are going to go.

On the races.. here are mine..

US Senate:

John Thune (R) – 68%
Brian Bengs (D) – 28%
Tamara Lesnar (L) – 4%

I think Lesnar and Bengs will hold Senator Thune under 70%. But just barely.


Dusty Johnson (R) – 80%
Collin Duprel (L) – 20%

Duprel will have more than a single digit showing just because of the contrarian vote, but not because of anything he did. It’s just that there are always people who will vote against the incumbent. Dusty may reach as high as 85%, but I don’t want to be overconfident. I’m sure he’ll be just as happy with 80%.


Kristi L. Noem (R) – 56%
Jamie Smith (D) – 40%
Tracey Quint (L) – 4%

Repeat after me. Jamie Smith is not Billie Sutton. Jamie Smith is not Billie Sutton. In Noem’s first race for Governor, she had just come off of a bruising primary, and then faced a Democrat who pretended to be conservative. There was no such hurdle in this election.

Noem’s 2022 primary race had her as a more reasonable candidate against a hard right opponent who had one of the worst run primary opposition campaigns in recent memory. Now, in the fall, her opponent Jamie Smith didn’t bother to try to be conservative, and instead just ran as a Democrat. And Kristi got to point that out over and over against an ineffective Smith campaign that never found it’s footing, as much as running a campaign who’s only point was that he wasn’t Kristi.

When your closing message is that “it’s ok to vote Democrat..” It shows how inept his campaign was. That’s not really a message to make the case to change their vote. If anything, it reinforces his identification with the minority party that keeps shrinking in the state. And let’s not forget the utter gift Smith gave the Noem campaign when Smith declared in a forum at the Sioux Falls Rotary “we need more things to tax.”  A perfect soundbite message highlighting his willingness to do just that. And a message his opponent Kristi Noem put to good use, as she had the money to pound it into voter’s minds. Over and over and over.

Smith will do well and be competitive in his home of Sioux Falls, but as the votes move across the river, I have the feeling this race will not resemble the last one.

Constitutional offices:

I think we’re in pretty safe territory for all Republicans, as Democrats put up little (or no) opposition with the exception of Secretary of State.  That race will be closer than the others, but it will still be in the win column.

State Senate: 

The question here is how many aren’t we going to win.


I think we will have Democrat wins in 10, 15, & 26.

  • In 10, the electoral math turned it into a hard Dem district. Unless the Democrat is so unknown or unlikeable, Democrats will push her through.
  • In 15, it’s now a Republican District, but after decades upon decades of not being a Republican area, it’s a hard sell. We’re up against an established Senator in Nesiba, and while I’d like it, I think it could be a nearly impossible lift this year.
  • 26 was doubtful before Joel Koskan, now even Republicans are telling people to vote for someone else. Scratch that race.

Closer to the wire..

  • District 1 might be tight in the Rohl/Wismer rematch, as I’m told she is pouring buckets of money into the race. But with Rohl having the upper hand, and an actual record of accomplishment, and Wismer not only screwed up her petitions and having to run as an indy, but she was utterly ineffective when she was there before, and Rohl came in as a breath of fresh air. I think we win this one.
  • District 12 could be another tight contest. Arch Beal/Jessica Meyers is a race that some are pointing to as being close. But I think Arch wins this. He has tremendous name ID as well as sign coverage all over the place. For as long as people have voted for Arch, I’m not sure Meyers has made the case to choose someone else.
  • I think District 27 is on the bubble. David Jones/Red Dawn Foster was always going to be a tough race, but from what I hear, Jones is very visible, while Democrat incumbent Red Dawn is not.

I give Republicans 2 of these three races.. but if we’re in a wave election where Republicans turn out, and Dems stay home.. I’m crossing my fingers we pick up all three.

Let’s cut it off there. What do you think about these races, as well as what is coming in the House of Representatives? Your predictions, Please.

21 thoughts on “Any predictions for tonight? It’s going to be a red wave, but how high will it crest for some candidates?”

  1. I believe Marty Jackley will have a huge victory. Christ Noem will not like that and will search for a way to get him impeached as well.

  2. I’ll throw out 12 House Dems: 1 (McCleerey), 10(x2), 15(x2), 18 (Cwach), 25 (Ahlers), 26A, 27(x2), 28A, and 32 (in a surprise to some).

    I’d say 9 is their floor and 14 is their ceiling. Maybe a minor upset in like 12 or 14.

  3. Kristi 58%, the Dem 36% , Libertarian 6%. Thune and Johnson are runaways with margins hard to imagine. In Nat’l, Oz will win actual vote, but watch, counting will shut down at 10 pm and during the night the Dems will stuff the ballot boxes in Philadelphia as they have done for years. Arizona has the Governor candidate who is the Secretary of State overseeing her own election. “Glitches” are already appearing and Hobbs will literally steal the election from Kari Lake. Laxalt will win Nevada, Johnson wil win Wisconsin, in spite of stuffed drop boxes. Walker will eventually win. Senate 52R 48D

  4. Republicans in 26 can still vote for Koskan, secure in the knowledge that Noem will be the Governor who appoints his replacement. The alternative scenarios are Bordeaux wins and takes the seat, or Koskan wins, Smith takes the Governor’s job, and appoints Bordeaux. In any case, voters need to understand that Koskan is not going to be seated, but voting for him will allow the next Governor to appoint his replacement.

    1. How about we deserve to lose that one. Plenty of majority to spare to be able to sleep at night and not be completely disgusted with yourself. Gross.

      1. Murdoc it depends on how the voters in 26 feel about Bordeaux vs somebody the Governor might choose.

        1. I hear ya. Repeating doesn’t help. We don’t deserve, as a party, to keep it.

          We have a majority by 30000% and we can afford to have some morals and not tell people to vote for a pedophile in order to keep the seat.

  5. “Any predictions for tonight?”

    The loyal followers of the out-of-state name-caller’s blog will be apoplectic and crying rivers of tears.

  6. Hard to argue with you Pat, as you have a great amount of experience with elections. South Dakotans will probably vote the same way they’ve voted for 40 years. Democrats on life support. I’ll be curious as how women vote based on the abortion question, the Koskon rape case, and other trends among younger voters (and I wonder if they’ll turn out). Smith was the best candidate that Democrats could put up and I think he’ll do better than you predict. His campaign has been good natured, not strident, good humored. Governor Noem didn’t really hit a high note in the campaign. She’s been an absentee Governor but she’s still the Republican candidate and that’s an enormous advantage.

  7. Probably a fairly close assessment, with the exception of the Congressional race.

    I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see Collin top 30%. He’s run about as smart a race as one can run without substantial funding or unlimited time on their hands. He has done considerable outreach to the tribes, and his debate performance was nothing short of outstanding for someone who isn’t a politician.

    It’s also a midterm election, meaning the presidential-year-only voters will stay home (which is a sizeable bloc… just look at D30 and the 14k votes cast in my 2020 race with Sen. Frye-Mueller). Meanwhile, IM-27 and Amendment D will bring out a lot of otherwise infrequent voters, who will turn out for Collin.

    And all of that’s not even counting the Taffy Howard supporters who still have a bone to pick with Dusty.

    I do think Dusty will still get the W at the end of the night, but I don’t think it’ll quite be the bloodbath you’re calling.

      1. The dwarf king is cory heidelberger. He runs the dakota free press propaganda site and has the physical stature and mentality of Joseph goebbels.

    1. And you were proven correct this morning. Poor little cory is lamenting on his national socialist blog that Governor Noem got 44,000 more votes this time around than last. His NDS is kicking into high gear.

      Poor little fella’s jealously fueled obsession won’t let him get over the fact that Governor Noem is now 7 wins and 0 losses in public elections and is a successful businesswoman (family farm), where he is 0 wins and 4 losses in public elections and a failed atheist teacher who has been living off the income of his Christian minister wife.

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