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RMA Poll: Compare Bios, Talk Voting Record, and Robinson Can Beat Noem

In October 2010, RMA Research of Sioux Falls released a poll stating that Scott Heidepriem was within six percentage points of Dennis Daugaard in the gubernatorial race. Heidepriem was not.

Yesterday, RMA Research released a poll stating that Corinna Robinson is nineteen percentage points behind Rep. Kristi Noem (43% to 24%) in the race for South Dakota's lone House seat. RMA also contends that if you tell the right stories and ask the right questions, you can get likely voters to favor Robinson over Noem by eight points (44% to 36%).

Pay close attention, Robinson rooters: these optimistic numbers don't say Robinson is winning; they say she can win, if she can get people to know her (only 17% of the 302 telephoned respondents said they are familiar with Robinson) and dim Noem's horsey-girl image with facts about her rotten record. Here's how RMA drove that Robinson shift:

  • Give voters biographies of both candidates. 82% of respondents found Robinson's résumé makes her an appealing candidate. 61% said the same of Noem's CV.
  • Talk about Noem's votes. RMA told voters Rep. Noem voted "to shut down the government in 2013, ...[voted] no on a farm bill and... [voted] to cut Social Security and Medicare by 25%." 57% said those issues made them less likely to vote to re-elect our Congresswoman.

Like the hopeful Heidepriem poll in 2010, RMA's finding doesn't tell Robinson is ahead; it tells her what she could do to get ahead. Follow Whirlwind Weiland around the state, tell everyone she meets about her own service in the military and Rep. Noem's lack of achievement in Congress, and land some big donors to put that message in every newspaper, on every radio station, and in every commercial break on the Big News at 6.


  1. John Tsitrian 2014.04.15

    I draw pretty much the same conclusions that you do from this poll, Cory, though I see an extra dimension in Corinna's challenge. She needs to convince South Dakotans that she's "one of us." A long and productive career in the Army is an asset in anybody's book, but it did physically disconnect her from everyday life in South Dakota for decades, a liability that will be exposed when South Dakota-specific nuance comes into issue discussions. Her disclosure to Kevin Woster a few weeks back that she intends to be a D.C. resident if elected did her some damage on that front and will come back to haunt her as the campaign season heats up. I happily raised a few bucks for Corinna at a meet-and-greet at my home in Rapid last month--she certainly has my vote, but now's the time for her to dig in and connect on a people-to-people level.

  2. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.04.15

    Cory, You wrote, "and land some big donors to put that message in every newspaper, on every radio station, and in every commercial break on the Big News at 6."

    You might have added and lots of little donors. She needs help from every Democrat in the State, all 307 of you, to have a chance. she is my friend on Facebook, so I see all the places that she lists that she goes each day, and I can tell you she is burning a lot shoe leather to get the job. I was not real sure of her when I first met her, but I am more sure each thing I hear her say. If you want to not see Kristi Noem in the House in January 2015, it is time to get involved, now, We have a very capable replacement.

  3. Michael B 2014.04.16

    I got to meet and talk to Kristi Noem at the State A basketball tournament a few weeks ago. Putting politics aside, I found her to be very nice and extremely personable.

    If Corinna Robinson wants to win, she is going to have to put in the time to become better known and get her message out. I am excited that we have two women running for the US House of Representatives. We desperately need more women to run for office.

    Funny you should mention Scott Heidepriem's run for governor. I listened intently during the debate at the State Fair. The only thing I remembered from that day is that Heidepriem's assertion that selling state airplanes was going to go a long way to solve the state's budget problems. He spent far too much time on that one issue.

    I spent quite a bit of time with the governor during miracle treat day taking pictures of the event for DeLon. I found him to be a genuine nice guy.

    Politicians are not always nice people but I think that the ones we currently have in office are decent and care about our state.

  4. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.04.16

    Michael B, If DD were a genuine nice guy, he would have taken the Feds offer to expand medicaid to cover those who are working and making too much to be on medicaid, but not enough to be covered under the reduced rate, subsidized medicare premiums. He would have gotten an extra 200 or more million dollars into the State, at a cost of about 2 million dollars, (talk about economic development at a heckuva bargain) and not refused to expand because of the ideology of the Teaparty, which does not want the AHCA or President Obama to succeed. Nice guys and good business people don't act like that.

  5. Michael B 2014.04.16

    I am only talking about personality. There is a difference.

    If I like you, I will vote for you. If you are a jerk, I will not even if your stand on the issues are perfectly in line with my own.

    I can call Cory my friend. He is the thorn in the side of many of my other friends. He brings the contrary to the table and we need to hear that.

    As far as the expansion of government healthcare goes, I there have been too many backdoor deals and no one really knows what the implications of ObamaCare will be long term. We do need to take care of those who can't afford to take care of themselves. I am convinced that for anyone 50 or less like me, social security and medicare will not exist because of the government. There is no free lunch.

  6. Bill Dithmer 2014.04.16

    Michael, I have known some strippers that were very " nice and extremely personable," in my life. I have also known a couple drug dealers that were " nice and extremely personable." If you add to that the list car salesmen, implement dealers, and insurance pushers, you will find one common denominator. They all used those attributes to get somebody to lay cash in their hand, slip the green stuff in their g string, or get a big deposit into their bank account.

    Kristi Noem could just as soon be a drug pushing, pole dancing, car salesman, for all the good she's done for the state of South Dakota while she's been in DC.

    She has managed to make some influential friends while there. Her bank account is fatter. And ya know what, she's been on tv a lot.

    But as far as being a congresswoman, she comes up way short in representing South Dakota.

    Now I like to be around " nice and extremely personable" people, but if they sell bad weed, are fat and sweaty, or sell you lemons when you do business with them, I dont spend much time being around them.

    Somehow I expect more from those we send to DC to work for us. So far with Kristi we are getting less. My guess is that the common people of this state just dont have the money she needs to climb the pole of success.

    The Blindman

  7. Bill Dithmer 2014.04.16

    "No one really knows what the implications of ObamaCare will be long term"

    Boy isn't that the truth. I sure wish that someone would have brought that up before we got involved in Iraq, and Afghanistan, among many other places and things US have done.

    I dont like ACA any more then the rest of the people that post against it, but it is a baby step in the right direction. I'm sure open to new ideas but so far the alternate to the ACA is nothing but silence, or going back to the same old shit of insurance and big pharmaceuticals being in control.

    If you have a better idea, by all means, please share them with the rest of us. The ACA isn't great, but it sure beats hell out of the way it was before.

    The Blindman

  8. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.04.16

    My God, Blindman, talk about two great posts. You said it way better than I could have in the first one and the second is my thoughts exactly. If the car (the American healthcare system) is broken, you don't keep driving it down the road until it crashes and kills you and everyone that you love. Late last Fall, John Thune said that healthcare in this country was/is taking 20% of our GDP and that it is unsustainable and he is right. What he neglected to mention is that the AHCA had not taken affect yet.

  9. Bill Dithmer 2014.04.16

    Lanny I'm like a twelve cylinder Jaguar, when everythings right I can get right on down the road. Unfortunately, I usually only hit on eight, and sometimes I limp on down the highway sounding like a two cylinder Johnny Popper. I'm high maintenance and costly to keep in running condition, of any kind.

    Oh ya, then there's that full moon thing.

    The Blindman

  10. mike from iowa 2014.04.16

    Michael B-Social Security would easily survive if politicians had the guts to make everybody pay SS taxes on all their income,not just the first $110,000. The wealthiest get free lunches from Congress every damn day and then they whine about paying too much.

  11. Michael B 2014.04.16

    The idea of affordable healthcare is fine. It's how the legislation was conceived in backdoor deals and how poorly it was implemented that I have the problem with.

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