Noem: I’m more Herseth Sandlin than Herseth Sandlin


As political theater goes, it doesn’t get much more fascinating than Thursday night’s Lincoln Day Dinner in Mitchell. The fundraiser drew four of the five GOP candidates for governor and all three of the GOP candidates for U.S. House, plus a bunch of the candidates for other offices. Click here to read our story about it.

The quip of the night, in my opinion, came from U.S. House candidate Kristi Noem when she said "I’m everything Herseth Sandlin says that she is."

There was so much meaning wrapped up in that one little sentence, it could be dissected many different ways. Essentially, though, Noem was saying that she actually is conservative, whereas she thinks Herseth Sandlin merely tries to appear that way.

I’ll be interested to see if Noem takes that statement and makes it a centerpiece of her campaign (maybe she’s already doing it; I’ve heard she’s running TV ads, but I haven’t seen them). If she does, it might be a smart move.

Why? Because people already see Noem as the Republican Herseth Sandlin, just because they’re both young, ambitious, politically minded women. That’s an oversimplification of them as people, but it’s the perception that’s out there. So Noem might as well go with it.

By saying she is "everything Herseth Sandlin says that she is," Noem has created for herself an easily remembered identity. And that’s something that I’m not sure her opponents, Chris Nelson and Blake Curd, will be able to create so readily.

11 thoughts on “Noem: I’m more Herseth Sandlin than Herseth Sandlin

  1. It is a pretty good line. On the other hand, in the general, when the national money flows in, the line might end up being “the party of Noem.”

  2. OK here’s a difference – EDUCATION.

    Kristi graduated from high school. She took classes at Northern State, SDSU and Mount Marty in Watertown. Then “the unexpected death of her father required Kristi to return to the family ranch full time. In recent YEARS, Kristi has continued to pursue her degree in Political Science by taking classes at SDSU.” (from her website.) Sounds more like Sarah Palin than SHS.

    I’ve said before and I’ll clarify it now. Lots of smart people don’t have college degrees. And there are a lot of ignorant people with a diploma on their wall. But before quitting college, for a tragic and understandable reason, Kristi attended THREE different schools. “Years” after resuming her studies, she still hasn’t completed a degree. And I think it’s fair for a candidate for national office to explain why this is so.

    I’m not being elitist. I want to know if she has the focus to complete a task. Sarah Palin who had a similarly fragmented college transcript quit halfway through her governorship. Will Kristi do the same thing if we elect her? Does she know what she is getting into before she begins a project/college or does she just start and bail if it doesn’t work out? Did she change colleges because of disciplinary problems? We’ve seen enough of that in politicians on both sides of the aisle for it to be a fair question. Despite her lack of academic credentials is she smart enough to communicate her SD values persuasively to others in Congress who ARE educated far beyond her level? Is she savvy enough to recognize poor counsel when someone tries to take advantage of her lack of education or experience? If she isn’t, then she won’t be of much use to us.

    South Dakotans may be tired of not being heard in Washington. But we are also tired of being a laughingstock. In her words/(tv ad): “I’m running for Congress because it’s the right thing to do.” Kristi seems like a nice person. She is a woman. She is an attractive woman. I’d love to have coffee with her. But if this is as deep as her qualifications run, I can’t imagine anyone voting for her to be our sole US Congressional delegate.

  3. i think steph is the bestest candidate of the 2 of them cause she went to college on the east coast.

  4. Kristi has some good book-learning too! How will the GOP nominee, be it Curt or Noem, sell themselves as TRUE fiscal conservatives, when they have a record of advocating for federal funds, as well as receiving federal funds, including subsidies? Isn’t what’s good for the goose good for the gander? After all, a stimulus for me might be considered a handout by you.

    I hope after June 8th, there will be a responsible, honest discussion of the issues and not just talking points over and over again.

  5. Noem is more “Herseth Sandlin than Herseth Sandlin.”
    Great. Another politician who thinks she “knows” herself…

    Cute line, but where’s the beef?

  6. Herseth-Sandlin is a phony because she left SD to attend Georgetown. Unlike our junior senator, who exudes authenticity because he left SD to attend, ahem, BIOLA. Right?
    Back on topic, Noem’s line is catchy. But what does it mean to actually be that which Herseth-Sandlin only claims? It seems like our representative claims to be a lot of things or, rather, makes a point of not claiming to be anything too specific. That is what has so troubled the members of her own party, myself included.
    The two *do* share one obvious thing, so there is something Palinesque (to echo Pasque above) about explicitly pointing to similarities whilst trotting out someone so light on credentials, when we have heard for decades that it is the Democrats who trade on identity politics and tokenism. (But then, no one has ever accused the Republicans of intellectual honesty!)

  7. Please spare the need for qualifications for public office. Barrack Obama. Enough said.

  8. you all sound like a bunch of sad sacks- such negativity- maybe since you don’t have anything good to say about anybody without dragging some one down you should not vote- stay hope for the future of the republic depends on postive people. Have fun listening to those sad sackers on hate radio too -it’s right up your alley.

  9. Stupid line by Noem. Too bad she won’t get to say such cute lines after the primary.

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