South Dakota’s Democratic Congresswoman, Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, is facing the fight of her life this election, against Republican Kristi Noem. Sandlin was swept into the House in 2004, after then-Congressman Bill Janklow, a Republican who served four terms as governor, was convicted of manslaughter for speeding through a stop sign and killing a motorcyclist. Since her election, she has attempted to cultivate an image as a Blue Dog Democrat, but her support for the Pelosi-Reid-Obama agenda have undercut her support in the Republican-leaning state.
To make liberal prospects bleaker, Noem has raised more money than any Republican challenger in America – and to great effect. A Rasmussen poll released Friday showed Noem leading Sandlin by five points among likely voters, exactly the number currently undecided.
Sensing an electoral blowout, it appears the Democratic Party, from the county level all the way to the White House, has one answer: good, old fashioned vote-buying. The evidence seems to indicate this hotly contested Congressional election is behind an Obama administration decision that cost taxpayers $760 million – and that the same federal authorities who threw out the Black Panther voter intimidation case are looking the other way during a new round of election-year dirty tricks.
The Democrats’ midterm strategy is to turn out its base. For Herseth Sandlin, American Indians are the new black. South Dakota’s newspaper The Argus Leader notes: “Strong Native American turnout has been the difference in statewide races in past years, and it could be critical in upcoming races. The emergence of early voting has only intensified efforts to get out the vote in Indian Country.”
The Congresswoman has made a special plea to this constituency, writing: “By all accounts, this will be a close election. Every vote will count and your vote can make a difference…Early voting has already started on several reservations. I would greatly appreciate your support on Election Day.” Among her campaign promises is a pledge to “[e]nact the very first Indian Agriculture Act as a part of the farm bill to bring the full benefits of all USDA programs to the Reservations.”
Coincidentally, the Obama administration negotiated a $760 million settlement for American Indians who claim they were discriminated against by the USDA, just in time for the election.
To make matters more interesting, the lead plaintiffs in the case, George and Marilyn Keepseagle, farm 500 acres in the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation that straddles the border between the Dakotas. Many of the plaintiffs live in South Dakota:
Sarah Vogel, a Bismarck attorney in the case, estimated that several hundred farmers and ranchers in the Dakotas are eligible. “There probably are more from our region than any other,” she said.
Given Obama’s months-long midterm appeal to blacks, Hispanics, feminists, and young voters – and Eric Holder’s use of the Justice Department to steer money to favored Democratic groups – the settlement looks like another corrupt ploy to turn out left-wing voters on election day.
As events on the ground show, bribery seems to be the Democrats’ statewide strategy.