Top Political Stories of 2018- #10 The Great Implosion of Jolene Loetscher.

#10 The Great Implosion of Jolene Loetscher.

Liberal Democrat Jolene Loetscher finished in the top two in the race for Sioux Falls Mayor, defeating people who outspent her significantly.  But between the election and the runoff, the campaign evolved from a campaign of possibility to one of unmitigated disaster.

As one reporter quipped, “She likely would have done better if she’d simply taken the final week off.”

Loetscher benefitted in the Mayoral contest as a result of being the person Sioux Falls Democrat community had coalesced around, largely rejecting fellow Democrat Kenny Anderson Jr., who ran a lackluster campaign.  Republicans split the vote between several candidates including Jim Entenman, Greg Jamison, and Paul TenHaken.

Coming in second, Loetscher had an opportunity to try to capture the votes that had gone to the people dropping out of the race. Instead Loetscher started a scorched earth campaign against her opponent, trying to intimate that he was threatening to “hack” her campaign.  The media reported on the allegations, but didn’t exactly buy her story. And in their skepticism, they began to look into it, and other tall tales of Loetscher’s told during the course of the campaign.

Loetscher’s credibility was shattered when the media started hitting her on releasing selected seconds of what she claimed was her evidence, and she found herself being accused of a “lack of transparency,” which was an issue many took with the predecessor in the office.

Claims of owning a leading bio-science company (when she actually operated a poop-scooping company) were debunked by the State Biotech association. Her claim of support for her plan for changes to the police department were lambasted as ‘misleading’ by the Sioux Falls Fraternal Order of Police. And Loetscher came out with a painful ‘last gasp’ presser right before the election where she claimed she wasn’t a victim, and “planned on winning.”

At this point Jonathan Ellis of the Argus Leader thought “she likely would have done better if she’d simply taken the final week off and taken a vacation somewhere. Instead, she suffered a historic defeat.” Jolene Loetscher could have been a future leader of the Democrat party, had she posted an honorable loss. Instead, she managed to find a way to become a political pariah.

But at least, it was entertaining to watch as it consumed the media this last April.

8 thoughts on “Top Political Stories of 2018- #10 The Great Implosion of Jolene Loetscher.”

  1. I remember when the campaign was going, I was somehow thinking it was as if Lora Hubbel was running.

  2. While some “unknowns” have decades of quiet accomplishment (ala TenHaken), be cautious hitching on the star of an unknown who has no such past accomplishment.

    Said another way, shiny objects often disappoint.

    1. No accomplishments? She’s picked up doggie-poo for some of the finest families in Sioux Falls!

  3. A huge blow for the liberals as they lost the one office of significance that they held.

    A similar story might be the numerous non story press conferences of Mayor Heuther to NOT run for anything.

  4. She was never going to win. I commend her for making the runoff.

    Tenhaken is just a really good candidate.

    1. The race said way more about Paul than anything else. He dominated both races. I give her praise for even making the runoff.

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