Howie Blog tries to draw a line between Daugaard & Syrian Refugees. What about Howie’s tie with Teamsters, the Soros Family, and Democrat PACs

I shouldn’t read Gordon Howie’s blog when crazy headlines pop up, because I just feel stupider when I’m done. Gordon spends most of his time hating on the political party that he abandoned when he threw his ally Stace Nelson under the bus and announced as an independent for US Senate.

Admittedly, I had to look when I saw the headline blaring “Daugaard Donations Tied To Syrian Refugees.”  So I looked.  And as usual, I’m just dumber for the effort to click.

I kind of knew what I was going to get when I noted the author of the article, Bob Ellis. Anymore,  Bob spends many of his waking hours being an @$$hole to Republicans after Gordon predictably lost this last election. Bob’s website used to be interesting, even when saying we need to believe in Rambo Jesus, but since last year, he spends most of his time in blind idolatry of Gordon Howie.

Reading the article, Ellis finds himself quickly lost in his specious declaration when the sole link to the Daugaard connection to Syrian refugees is…. (cue ominous music…..dum dum duuuum….) Daugaard accepted political donations from former DSS director and Daugaard Administration advisor Deb Bowman, current LSS CEO Betty Oldenkamp, and former state senator Russ Olson…  because they’re involved with Lutheran Social Services!

Umm, what?  I mean, they’re not as cool as Catholic organization members (said me in a smirking manner), but I don’t think that means they’re trying to fill the state with Syrian refugees. In fact, I’d challenge Bob to name any Syrian refugees they’ve imported into South Dakota?  But God forbid Bob come up with anything that isn’t completely whack-a-doodle.

Bob tries to use his calumny against Daugaard to lecture the world on who is and is not a Republican. If Bob wants to lecture us on who is Republican, and who isn’t, I’d argue that the imagined connection between Governor Daugaard and Syrian Refugees is far less provable than his own false idol Gordon Howie’s connection with Teamsters, the Soros Family, and Democrat PACs from this past election. Because a PAC connected with Howie this past election took money from all of them.

And it was a lot of money.  Over $100,000 when it was said and done.

As I’d noted in great detail this past election, this past year, a PAC was formed to support the candidacy of Gordon Howie, ran by Howie confederate Gary Coe, called “Many True Conservatives.” And if you look at their expenditures, in the FEC Report below, Many True Conservatives spent nearly every dime to promote the candidacy of Gordon Kenneth Howie.

Many True Conservatives 2014 4q FEC

Where did this PAC get their money? Well, if you look at the report, they took in nearly all of their money (Over $108,000 total) from a single source – Every Voice Action.  Don’t remember them? They came in late in the game, and were reported on briefly by David Montgomery at the Argus Leader. In reference to their support of Rick Weiland:

Every Voice Action received $1.58 million through Sept. 30. It’s received another $665,000 in the past two weeks.

Who are these donors? The biggest ones are other groups.

For example, the better-funded Mayday PAC gave $458,000 to its comrade in the fight against Mike Rounds.

Another group, “Friends of Democracy IE,” was even more generous. It gave $1.15 million to Every Voice. Donnelly is the treasurer of Friends of Democracy, another Super PAC founded “to end Super PACs.” Hopping over to Friends of Democracy’s FEC page, we can see it’s been primarily funded by a famous name: Soros.

In particular, it’s been given most of its money by Jonathan Soros, son of the famous financier (and liberal donor) George Soros. This election cycle, Jonathan Soros gave Friends of Democracy $1.5 million. George Soros gave it another $250,000; other George Soros children Andrea Soros and Alex Soros gave $250,000 and $375,000. It also got a lot of money from Napster founder and Facebook investor Sean Parker ($245,000), Google engineer Matt Cutts ($285,000), Kathleen McGrath of Encino, Calif. ($100,000), and John Pritzker of the Pritzker family.

Back to Every Voice Action. It’s also received $100,000 from CWA Working Voices, the independent expenditure arm of the Communication Workers of America; $100,000 from former Stride Rite president Arnold Hiatt; $50,000 from Cutts; $50,000 from private equity billionaire Jerome Kohlberg; and $50,000 from early Google employee David DesJardins. Other donors gave it less than $50,000; I’ll list them all at the bottom.

It also got an in-kind donation of $11,427.42 from the House Majority PAC, a PAC devoted to helping House Democrats. That was listed as being shared polling costs in districts where Every Voice Action is backing Democratic congressional candidates.

Read that here.

So if Ellis is going to come up with some nutty and false connection and lecture Republicans on Daugaard taking “Syrian Refugee Money” because of someone’s taking money from employees and board members for LSS, then he’d damned well better man up, and apply the same standards to the man on whose website he’s writing for – and admit the Howie PAC’s acceptance of money from labor unions, Democrat PAC’s and the Soros Family.

Should Congress suspend gun rights for people on a list? Rounds says, not so fast… 2nd Amendment, due process, anyone?

In last night’s presidential address, President Obama made a point of stating that people on the no fly list be barred from being able to purchase firearms, which to many, might seem to be a reasonable restriction.

But…  there are other factors involved in it, as US Senator Mike Rounds brings up in a recent interview with South Dakota Public Broadcasting:

U.S. Senator Mike Rounds questions a call by the Obama Administration to prohibit someone on the no fly list from owning a gun in the United States.


But Senator Mike Rounds worries this would violate the constitution.

“Being able to fly is one thing but constitutional protections for someone to be able to have an arms, to have the right to bear arms, to keep and bear arms, is a constitutionally protected right.  And, if you’re going to take that away from someone there has to be a due process involved in it,” says Rounds

Read that all here.

And Senator Rounds brings up a good point. the Second Amendment.   If you want to restrict someone from flying that’s one thing, but due process needs to come into play if you’re going to strip someone of that right granted under the Second Amendment.  Which also brings in the The Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution.

Terrorism is specifically designed to instill fear in the hearts of people. We should not let fear serve as an excuse to allow others to promote a political agenda designed to take rights away from us.

Lance Russell proposing bill to re-direct lottery revenues to teacher pay

From today’s KCCR, District 30 State Rep Lance Russell is planning to propose a measure to re-direct Video Lottery revenues to teacher pay, noting that he does not believe new taxes are needed:

lance-russellDistrict 30 South Dakota Representative Lance Russell of Hot Springs is bringing forth a bill that would dedicate revenue from video lottery for the purpose of supplementing teacher salaries in the state and establishing a teacher salary enhancement fund.

Russell says a tax increase for South Dakotans is unjustified…

Russell says that the state can come up with the 75 million dollar increase in teacher pay without raising taxes…

Russell adds that re-allocating lottery funds is an appropriate way to fund education…


Read (and listen) to it all here.

US Senator John Thune’s Weekly Column: The Fight to Repeal Obamacare

thuneheadernew John_Thune,_official_portrait,_111th_CongressThe Fight to Repeal Obamacare
By US Senator Sen. John Thune

Before it became law, Republicans in Congress warned of the damage the so-called Affordable Care Act would cause and the burdens the American people would face as a result. Five and a half years later, Obamacare – as it became known – has chipped away at family budgets, squeezed small business growth, and led to fewer choices for patients and their doctors. Obamacare has broken nearly every promise its Democrat authors made to the American people, including the oft-repeated promise that if you liked your doctor and health care plan you could keep them, ‘period.’

Obamacare is broken – it always has been – which is why Republicans who campaigned for the Senate majority in 2014 promised voters that if they gave us the chance, we would send an Obamacare repeal bill to President Obama. Despite fierce opposition from Democrats and the president, Senate Republicans have now made good on that promise.

Now that the Senate has passed a repeal bill, the ball will soon be in the president’s court. He can either support this measure and help lift the burdens Obamacare has placed on the American people, or he can double down on his failed policies. If the president chooses the latter, it will be clear to the American people that the only thing standing in the way of an Obamacare repeal bill being signed into law is the current occupant of the White House.

The evidence to suggest repealing this fundamentally flawed law is necessary couldn’t be any clearer. Obamacare was supposed to lower health care premiums. It didn’t. It was supposed to reduce health care costs. It didn’t do that either. And it was supposed to protect the health care plans Americans wanted to keep, which couldn’t be further from the reality. Obamacare was sold to the American people as a health care solution, but it’s turned out to be yet another health care problem.

Since Obamacare was signed into law in 2010, I’ve heard from countless South Dakotans who have shared with me their personal stories about how this burdensome law is affecting their families. One person recently wrote to tell me that her and her husband’s health care plan is going up by more than $8,000 next year. That’s a staggering amount of money. What family can afford such a significant increase in expenses from one year to the next? Sadly, that’s only one of many stories I’ve heard, and these stories aren’t unique to South Dakota.

It’s time to move away from the president’s broken health care law and toward the kind of health care reform Americans are actually looking for: an affordable, accountable, patient-focused system that gives individuals control of their health care decisions. It’s what the American people want, and it’s what they deserve.

US Senator Mike Rounds’ Weekly Column: Repeal and Replace Obamacare

RoundsPressHeader MikeRounds official SenateRepeal and Replace Obamacare
by Senator Mike Rounds

The American people deserve a healthcare system that works for them, not against them. One that is truly affordable for all families, offers viable health insurance options and strengthens patient-provider relationships. Unfortunately, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare, fails on all these fronts. Instead, the ACA has brought about more government, more bureaucracy and more rules and regulations that have resulted in soaring health care costs and less access to care for families across the country.

I, along with many of my Senate colleagues, promised to repeal and replace Obamacare, and recently we had the opportunity to follow through on that promise. On December 3rd, we passed a bill to repeal significant portions of the Affordable Care Act.

My office has received phone calls and letters from hundreds of South Dakotans telling me how unaffordable the so-called Affordable Care Act really is for them. Premiums for certain plans in South Dakota have increased by nearly 50 percent under the ACA, forcing some families to choose between paying outrageous rates and forgoing health insurance all together just so they can afford to pay their mortgage and put food on the table. This is unacceptable.

According to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, the healthcare law will cost American taxpayers more than $116 billion a year. In fact, on average, every household in the United States can expect more than $20,000 in new taxes over the next 10 years. This is a heavy burden to place on the already over-taxed, over-regulated American people.

Repealing the Affordable Care Act is only the first step in a long journey towards a better healthcare system. Congress must work together to create a replacement plan that puts the patient first. We also need a partner in the White House who understands that significant changes must be made in order to repair our broken healthcare system.

Any replacement plan must be market-based and patient-centered in order to be truly affordable for families. This can be achieved by enacting transparent, step-by-step reforms. I support common-sense initiatives, like expanding Health Savings Accounts and creating pools, such as the Multiple Employers Welfare Trust, in which small businesses can unite to secure better rates. The worst parts of Obamacare, such as the employer mandate, individual mandate and the Independent Payment Advisory Board, have no place in any future health care plan.

We can cut costs by reforming medical liability laws as well. Our current system encourages frivolous lawsuits which come at a high cost to doctors, taxpayers and truly injured patients who deserve timely compensation. Lastly, we must hold insurance companies more accountable by increasing transparency, standardizing paperwork and helping those with pre-existing conditions maintain access to care.

Allowing healthy competition within the private insurance market would allow families to choose the healthcare plan that best fits their needs and budget. I will continue to advocate for these responsible and effective solutions as we move forward with a replacement plan. The Affordable Care Act greatly expanded the government’s role in health care, and it very clearly did not work. This is the message the American people are sending and this is the message Congress sent by passing legislation to repeal Obamacare.

Congresswoman Kristi Noem’s Weekly Column: Fueled By South Dakota

noem press header kristi noem headshot May 21 2014Fueled By South Dakota
By Rep. Kristi Noem

It might surprise many of us, but there are a lot of people out in D.C. who don’t seem to know the difference between South Dakota and North Dakota.  I know my counterpart in North Dakota often gets the question: “Is that the state with Mount Rushmore?”  No, that’s South Dakota.  For me, the question is: “Are you the state with all of that oil?”  No, that’s North Dakota, but while North Dakota has all that oil, South Dakota’s corn and soybean production plays its own role in America’s energy security.

Every year, South Dakota harvests more than 400 million bushels of corn and 100 million bushels of soybeans.  These commodities provide a pathway toward North American energy independence that can help boost our economy and our national security.

Today, about one-third of the petroleum used in the United States is imported from foreign countries, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.  Most of this petroleum is refined into gas or diesel.  Especially with conflicts arising in energy-rich areas of our world, the need to decrease our reliance on foreign fuels grows every single day.  Now is the time to double down on domestic energy production, but unfortunately, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is looking to let off the gas.

In early 2014, the EPA proposed new Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) volumes.  These volume requirements, which impact corn-based ethanol and biodiesel alike, tell refineries how many gallons of renewable fuels should be blended into our overall supply.  This gives both farmers and consumers more certainty and greater price stability.

The EPA’s initial proposal was very disappointing, as the agency moved to significantly roll back our commitment to ethanol and biodiesel.  Not only could this curb production, but the move would send the wrong message to investors, risk jobs, and threaten the creation of more developed biofuels.

I, along with a bipartisan group of 30 lawmakers, reached out to the EPA shortly after their announcement.  It was important that they reverse course.

When the final numbers were announced in late November, the RFS remained beneath the levels I believe are appropriate.  Nonetheless, the EPA did adjust the requirements at least slightly higher because of the pressure we put on them.

Especially at a time when the Middle East remains so volatile, our commitment to homegrown renewable fuels should not be in doubt.  While the EPA is backing down, I am not.  In recent weeks, I introduced an extension of the biodiesel tax credit.  This legislation would ensure that domestically produced biodiesel was given a $1-per-gallon tax credit through the end of 2016. The legislation has bipartisan support and I’m hopeful it can be wrapped into an end-of-the-year tax extenders package.

My number one responsibility is to keep the American people safe – protecting economic opportunities comes in at a close second.  By throwing our support behind homegrown fuels rather than foreign oil, we are accomplishing both and creating a nation that is fueled by South Dakota in the process.


Governor Daugaard’s Weekly Column: Driving In Winter Weather

daugaardheader DaugaardDriving In Winter Weather
A column by Gov. Dennis Daugaard:

There’s nothing like the first snowfall of the year. When I was young, a heavy storm meant no school, and my sisters and I would play cards with Dad, after we did the farm chores.

Snow is nice until you have to drive in it. Though South Dakotans know how to handle snow and cold weather, we still need to prepare ourselves for the hazardous driving conditions winter brings.

Driving in winter weather is a serious matter. Every year during the holiday season, the Highway Patrol sees a spike in traffic accidents and fatalities. Around the Thanksgiving holiday this year, 10 people lost their lives in car crashes and several others were severely injured.

If you will be traveling for Christmas or New Year’s, prepare yourself. Before you travel, go to, call 511 or download the SDDOT 511 app to check road conditions. Pack a flashlight, blankets, drinking water and a shovel. Make sure your car is ready for the trip by checking your tires and scraping off the ice from all of your windows.

When you’re driving, take it slow and allow yourself extra time to reach your destination. It’s usually a good idea to leave cruise control off. Conditions can change quickly in the winter and you need to be ready.

Don’t crowd the plow. Department of Transportation crews work long hours in the worst conditions, and they do their best to keep our highways clear of ice and snow. When you approach a snow plow, leave at least four car lengths between you and the back of the plow. Never pass a plow on the right. This is the direction plows push the snow.

No matter what season it is, always wear your seatbelt and make sure everyone in your vehicle is buckled up. Nearly two-thirds of those who died in car crashes in South Dakota in the last year were not wearing their seatbelts. Whether you are traveling across the state or just driving a few blocks, buckling up could save your life.

Traveling to spend Christmas with loved ones is well worth it. To keep the holidays from turning tragic, do all that is within your power to arrive safely at your destination. Be safe and have a great holiday season.


Dem activist website describes South Dakota Democrat party leadership in unfavorable terms, uses term ‘corrupt.’

Wow! There are some Democrats out there who don’t like the way their party is run. And not just a little. They really, really don’t like the way their party is run, and are openly accusing South Dakota Democrat elites of favoritism and self-dealing. They even throw out the word “corrupt.”

But don’t take my word for it. Read it here as described by the Sioux Falls Chapter of the Democrat group “Drinking Liberally,” in a post from Friday attributed to Sheldon Osborn:

Despite the poor showing by the Democratic Party in 2014, its leadership and staff tolerated no self-examination and allocated no time for reflection at its post-election meeting last December. Instead they applauded everyone’s efforts ad nauseam and retreated to executive session to allocate election bonuses, pay raises, and interim consulting contracts to its staff. (Some might describe this as corrupt given the active favoritism the Party leadership and its staff practiced in the election of new Party officers.) It was a classic example of top-down leadership from a group desperate to maintain its grip on the remnants of its power. It is little wonder that Democratic registration continues to decline.

“Instead they applauded everyone’s efforts ad nauseam and retreated to executive session to allocate election bonuses, pay raises, and interim consulting contracts to its staff.”

The South Dakota Democratic Party (SDDP) meets next week in Chamberlain to change its Constitution and plan for the future. The new Constitution, after numerous requests, has finally been published for review. It continues the Party’s trend toward top-down leadership. It allows Party officers to exclude the public from all Party meetings except Central Committee meetings, empowers Legislative District organizations at the expense of County Parties, and, by allowing the appointment of Precinct Committee people from anywhere in a County or Legislative District, opens the door for narrow demographic groups or cliques to more easily dominate the ideological and strategic direction of a County Party or Legislative District. As an example of this arbitrariness, in Minnehaha County, where a small group has already imposed this open appointment policy, the current Party Chair arbitrarily cancelled (not postponed, but cancelled) a previously scheduled Central Committee meeting at which, among other things, the proposed constitutional changes were scheduled for local discussion.

Read it all here.

Ooo….  So the leadership of the Sioux Falls Drinking Liberally group is telling tales of Dem Party leadership… “Despite the poor showing by the Democratic Party in 2014, its leadership and staff tolerated no self-examination and allocated no time for reflection at its post-election meeting last December. Instead they applauded everyone’s efforts ad nauseam and retreated to executive session to allocate election bonuses, pay raises, and interim consulting contracts to its staff….”

That’s actually great news going into this years’s coming election season, and a good indication that the South Dakota Democrat ‘formula for success’ that they’ve used for the past two cycles will continue to be used.

Of course, that means complete dominance for my party, but I’m not complaining.

But did they actually award election bonuses for the past election? What was the benchmark for these bonuses? Showing up? Sobriety? Not committing suicide in despair? Achieving 20% in elections?  Claiming that bonuses were paid last year is pretty remarkable, as in most political elections where bonuses are paid, it’s actually based on winning.

Since in no way did Dems win anything last year, the proposition of anyone receiving a bonus is downright shocking, not to mention the accusations of favoritism and self-dealing! And apparently, even that particular writer in the state Democrat party’s rank and file thought so as well when he added “Some might describe this as corrupt given the active favoritism the Party leadership and its staff practiced in the election of new Party officers.”

Wow. As much as people might complain about Republicans, apparently in South Dakota, the alternative is far, far worse. As noted by the party’s own members.