Governor Dennis Daugaard just spotted his opponents five points. Maybe ten.

In 2010, candidate Dennis Daugaard promised no new taxes:

A recession is not the time to raise taxes. I will not raise taxes as governor. I will not support any new taxes or any increases in existing taxes. I would only consider a tax increase in response to an emergency, such as the temporary gas tax increase to pay for snow removal after the blizzards of 1997 ["Dennis Daugaard on Tax Reform," OnTheIssues.org, downloaded 2014.05.22, citing 2010 Gubernatorial campaign website daugaardforgovernor.com, 2010.11.02].

In 2013, the GOP spin machine cheered Governor Daugaard promised no new taxes and meant it. Governor Daugaard's staff reaffirmed that promise:

Daugaard made a commitment during his 2010 election campaign that he wouldn’t raise taxes except for an emergency.

Transportation Secretary Darin Bergquist said that hasn’t changed.

...“The governor is willing to discuss the state’s transportation infrastructure needs, but he intends to keep the promise he made to the voters in 2010 that he would not raise taxes,” [spokesman Tony] Venhuizen said.

“He hasn’t even announced that he’s running for a second term. He’s been pretty firm on controlling taxes and spending and that’s unlikely to change,” Venhuizen added.

There was a final statement that perhaps summed it all up. “The governor has never said that he would change his position on taxes,” Venhuizen said [Bob Mercer, "SD Governor to Keep Fuel Tax Vow," Prairie Business Magazine, 2013.04.26].

In 2014, Governor Daugaard says he will support raising some taxes:

“South Dakota’s highway system is currently in good condition. However, the state has seen the purchasing power of the gas tax go down over time, because we tax gasoline per gallon rather than per dollar. That means that, unlike the sales tax, gas tax revenue does not go up with inflation,” Daugaard said. “I also know that many county and township officials believe that local road funding is also an issue.

“When I ran for governor four years ago, I promised that I would not support tax increases, and I have kept that promise. I want to participate in a discussion about future transportation needs, however, without taking any options off the table, including proposals to restore the purchasing power of the gas tax,” he said [Bob Mercer, "Daugaard: Willing to Consider Increasing State Highway Taxes," Aberdeen American News, 2014.05.21].

Restore the purchasing power of the gas tax—who writes this stuff? I guess that's how we Democrats need to sell our plans on Capitol Hill: We need to restore the purchasing power federal income tax among higher-income earners. Wow! That really does sound better than saying, We need to raise taxes.

Permit me an analogy. 26 years ago there was a tall, gangly Republican who had promised "No new taxes" to get elected. But then he changed his mind and said he was o.k. with some new taxes. When he ran for re-election 22 years ago, he weathered a noisy but mostly ineffective challenge from a radical conservative in the primary. But breaking the "no new taxes" pledge weakened that President politically. A cranky old Independent peeled some votes away from him, and he lost to a fiery Democrat.

Joe, Susan, have a beer. Have two. On Dennis.