South Dakota Democratic Party officials are trumpeting a piece in today’s editions of The Washington Post that takes down South Dakota’s only member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Republican Kristi Noem, for the political box in which she locked herself. The opinion piece was written by Joann Weiner, a member of the George Washington University faculty who teaches economics, was a member of staffs for the U.S. Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve banks of Dallas and New York, and has a resume much longer and more impressive than the noun “blogger” would seem to cover.
Weiner’s focus is on Noem’s past positions regarding aid to needy people in the farm bill and regarding her opposition to relief for Hurricane Sandy victims — and Noem’s current position seeking relief for ranchers who lost cattle in the early October blizzard that pummeled much of western South Dakota. Unmentioned in the Democrats’ news release today is any call for South Dakota’s remaining Democrat in Congress, U.S. Sen. Tim Johnson, to prevail upon his Democratic colleagues in the Senate and the House to overlook those past positions. You can read the piece on the Internet here:
I understand why South Dakota Democrats want to bash Kristi Noem. I understand why they feel they must do it. That is politics, as we see 24/7 these days. Sometimes I wonder why we forget a basic rule of life: When we see somebody stuck in the ditch, we don’t ask who they are, we just help get them out of the mess, whether it’s Hurricane Sandy or food stamps or the blizzard we’ve come to know as Atlas.
On a side note, it’s worthwhile to acknowledge the temptation of good fall grass, after so many years of drought. That, and the shift to fall calving by so many producers, meant a lot of cattle were still on the range when October came. In dry years, a lot of those cattle might have already been moved before Atlas came.