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Liberal Invades Conservative Media Bunker: Heidelberger Interviews Howie!

How do I get myself into these things? Heck, I just ask.

In this week's Bizarro-world video, Liberty Today becomes Madville Times as I interview aspiring and conditional Independent U.S. Senate candidate Gordon Howie:

The highlights:

  • Howie says he's ahead of schedule on gathering signatures for his nominating petition.
  • Howie views his campaign as a natural extension of the Stace Nelson campaign. If Nelson doesn't win the GOP primary, Howie believes Nelson conservatives will heed Nelson's Heck No and turn to Howie instead of Rounds.
  • While he plans to out-conservative any non-Nelson nominee, Howie thinks he can get votes from Democrats and Independents who are disgusted with leaders of both parties putting partisan power games above principle. (But Gordon, will those non-Republicans like your principles?)
  • Howie says his fourth-place, 12.44% showing in the 2010 GOP gubernatorial primary doesn't show that his natural statewide conservative base is too small to help him win an election. Howie contends his 2010 turnout was depressed by his being "significantly maligned in the media." (Now who would have done a terrible thing like that?)
  • Producer Ed Randazzo's phone went off during the interview. Fortunately, no such thing happened with Ed's ever-present pistol.
  • Howie calls Pressler a "partisan hack" who cannot get the vote of any thoughtful Republican or Independent.
  • Howie says we shouldn't look for a five-point plan from a candidate (dodge?). He offers voters three general principles: cap federal spending, reduce taxes and regulation, and "return to the traditional values, the principles, that made America great."
  • Howie says he does not believe in a religious test for candidates.

Worth noting: Gordon and I both had fun in this interview. Conservatives, y'all and I should get together more often.


  1. Tim 2014.04.22

    Just another Tea Party wingnut, thanks but no thanks.

  2. Steve Hickey 2014.04.22

    Do you think he'd let me on the show ? I'd ask him to not run and tell him that I'm calling prolife leaders and pastors around the state this week to publicly not support a Howie independant run. I would remind him he couldnt even get far into the double digits with Republcians a few years ago and his popularity has gone seriously south since and how the hell no vote can't win a general election and he potentially will give a US Senate seat to a pro-abort. I would ask him if then LIFE is indeed his foremost priority as a conservative or if his spite for RINOs is more important to him than dismembering human beings without anesthesia.

  3. Lynn G. 2014.04.22

    Wow! That was unexpected! lol I was hoping for that video/musical intro that always reminds me of the Colbert Report.

    I do believe there is common ground that goes beyond party affiliation in disgust with how those who have been elected to government have abused their positions of power and public trust. Besides failed and misguided policies we have a system that has been put in place over the course of decades in our state that continually reduce transparency and rules or laws that seem to favor or protect a certain political culture. This is supposed to be the government for the people isn't it and not a select few who profit from it?

    I hope everyone whether they lean towards libertarian, constitutional, conservative, moderate or progressive principles can help educate voters in our state as to what has really been happening in state government in regards to EB-5, Bendagate, cronyism, corruption, failed policies and the systematic cover up. Otherwise these folks will come home from working their job or multiple jobs exhausted and occupied with daily life, turn on the TV or read the paper and see the 9 million dollar man smiling at them remembering he was Governor and just vote for him not knowing he will fit in perfectly with what is wrong in Washington.

  4. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.22

    I'd let you on my show, Steve. You make a point that Howie fervently denies: his low score in the 2010 primary suggests that he cannot field the support necessary to crack double digits in a statewide general election. Whatever maligning came out in the last couple weeks of the 2010 primary will come back just hard in the general election. He'll split the all-caps LIFE vote while making few inroads among those those who believe in women's liberty. He can postulate that voters want principles, not partisan power games, but he's got to offer principles that will appeal to voters across party lines. Howie may ding Pressler as a partisan hack, but I'm not convinced that message will resonate with independent voters. They'll see Pressler as a real man in the middle, while they'll see Howie as the extreme Republican. Independents are looking for compromise, not radicalism.

  5. chris 2014.04.22

    Did he let ya talk to his cardboard Nancy Pelosi?

  6. Steve Hickey 2014.04.22

    I just watched the video. My favorite part was to hear him say it's time for reasonable minded people to come together and agree on what we can agree on and stop beating each other up. He has spent the last four years aggressively doing the exact opposite.

  7. larry kurtz 2014.04.22

    Steve, Steve, Steve: you are at least as big a nutcase as Howie is.

  8. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.22

    Larry, I suspect some observers will say Steve and Gordon share a nutcase quotient in their willingness to talk to me.

  9. Steve Hickey 2014.04.22

    Larry, you are too. Admit it.

  10. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.04.22

    As I listened to Mr Howie, I heard the same top two themes I heard at the Republican debate a week ago Saturday, cut taxes and less regulation. When is a Republican going to have the cojones to drop this mantra and talk about paying down the deficit and regulate in a sensible way? When the first tax cutter, Ronald Reagan took over in Jan 1981 we were still under a trillion in national debt. When the second big tax cutter, George W Bush took over in 2001, we were under 6 trillion in debt, (although, I suspect part of that decreasing the debt in the Clinton years, came from stealing from social security). Today with the national debt at nearly 18 trillion dollars and the Fed controlling the interest rates at unsustainable low levels, we still have politicians willing to talk about cutting taxes. It makes no sense and until people realize that, there is no way of getting back the USA that we were a generation or two ago.

    09/30/1999 5,656,270,901,615.43
    09/30/1998 5,526,193,008,897.62
    09/30/1997 5,413,146,011,397.34
    09/30/1996 5,224,810,939,135.73
    09/29/1995 4,973,982,900,709.39
    09/30/1994 4,692,749,910,013.32
    09/30/1993 4,411,488,883,139.38
    09/30/1992 4,064,620,655,521.66
    09/30/1991 3,665,303,351,697.03
    09/28/1990 3,233,313,451,777.25
    09/29/1989 2,857,430,960,187.32
    09/30/1988 2,602,337,712,041.16
    09/30/1987 2,350,276,890,953.00
    09/30/1986 2,125,302,616,658.42
    09/30/1985 * 1,823,103,000,000.00
    09/30/1984 * 1,572,266,000,000.00
    09/30/1983 * 1,377,210,000,000.00
    09/30/1982 * 1,142,034,000,000.00
    09/30/1981 * 997,855,000,000.00

  11. owen reitzel 2014.04.22

    That was surprising. Good job Cory.
    I would like to point out one thing. When Howie talked about Obama and Reid being divisive it's because the far right, like Howie, have made it that way. Howie talks a good game about working together but doesn't practice what he preaches.

  12. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.22

    Owen, I tend to agree Howie has portrayed himself as a leader of the no-compromise Tea Party camp. I am curious to see if he can pivot to appeal to a broader segment of the electorate. It will be hard work for him, perhaps harder than it will be for Larry Pressler to step away from his history as a Republican and show himself as a middle-of-the-roader.

  13. Lynn G. 2014.04.22

    Lanny & Owen I'm thinking short term at the moment with all of us getting thru #1 the primary and 2nd to the general election with what I feel unites all of us in getting rid of what has been well publicized about what is wrong with state government. Lets make sure Rounds gets defeated in the primary 1st. With his track record and the culture surrounding, supporting and covering for him things will not improve if he gets to Washington. Besides if he gets elected it's like rewarding someone for poor performance!

  14. Lynn G. 2014.04.22

    It's too bad it's really not just an election about different philosophies and working together to find common ground and actually govern with real productivity. There is so much more involved that affects us here at home besides at the national level.

  15. Rorschach 2014.04.22

    Pressler the "partisan hack"? I never cared for Pressler when he served in the Senate before. But I heard Larry Pressler speak, and was surprised how well he did and how much I agreed with what he said. I'm convinced he believes he can make a difference in DC in a closely divided senate - free from any obligations to tow the party line.

    Pressler talked about cutting military spending, and congress forcing weapons on the military that the military doesn't even want. He talked about scaling back our military occupation of Europe. He talked about the ground war we would have in Syria if McCain had been President. He talked about equal rights for GLBT. He talked about congress members spending half their time in office raising money from big special interests and how he wouldn't have to do that (any more). He talked about Obamacare being a Republican proposal initially brought by the Heritage Foundation and enacted by Willard "Mitt" Romney, and acknowledged that it's the law of the land, won't be repealed, and people should work together to improve it. I liked what I heard, and I want to hear more.

  16. owen reitzel 2014.04.22

    If Howie trys to paint himself as a middle-of-the -roader he'll lose Stace and he'll become a RINO. He has to stay true nto the far right.

  17. Rorschach 2014.04.22

    Cory, You are a career educator right down to the glasses, beard and vest. Get yourself a pocket protector, man! Have you taken leave of your senses?

  18. Jenny 2014.04.22

    I never knew you were so entertaining, Cory! You could be a news anchor.

  19. Les 2014.04.22

    Rep Hickey trusts two Catholics who both represent and agree on capital punishment, to be pro life conservatives? Sounds like you're talking about Tom Daschle to me.
    Again I would ask, what have all my party pro life voters done to help prevent abortion with another choice rather than just a vote to push them into the back alley butcher? You included Steve. Or is this just about getting the vote and not walking the walk?

  20. Bree S. 2014.04.22

    I find Steve Hickey's desire to call everyone in the state and tell them not to support Gordon Howie interesting. I find his desire to destroy another Republicans's campaign noteworthy. I notice he didn't try to stop Rhoden, Bosworth, or Ravsnborg from running. If Hickey wants a pro-life Republican in the U.S. Senate he should probably be supporting Stace Nelson, who doesn't sabotage pro-life efforts like Mike Rounds.

    I will be certain to remember Steve Hickey's desire to destroy other Republicans when he next runs for office.

  21. Jenny 2014.04.22

    I think Steve Hickey just likes being in the limelight.

  22. Roger Cornelius 2014.04.22

    As I recall, last week Hickey did try to "destroy" another Republican campaign by filing a lawsuit and going on the Belfrage radio program to oppose Bosworth's fake candidacy.

    Mostly I think Howie just needs attention. All the options he is playing with aren't viable or realistic. It is unlikely that any Democrat would vote for him for any reason.

    Obviously the more candidates there are on the Republican or Independent ticket the better for Weiland. If Howie really is supportive of Nelson, he would join the campaign and work toward a Nelson win and not become a distraction.

  23. TG 2014.04.22

    At the very least, it was very entertaining. Good job and good questions Cory.

    Roger - You posed a point that cracks me up when I read certain R's commenting on here: It is unlikely that any Democrat would vote for him for any reason. I'm an R and I totally get it. You have Weiland and he's a pretty good bet for the D's. Why anyone would think a D would vote for a so far right in a little box R is beyond me.

  24. Hubba 2014.04.22

    I think you're on to something here Cory- that was highly entertaining and smart.
    Two things- you're getting pretty grey and I love the "socialist suit."

  25. Bree S. 2014.04.22

    Howie is supportive of Nelson, Roger. He has stated he will drop out of the race if Stace Nelson wins. The distractions in this race are Rhoden, Ravnsborg, and Bosworth.

  26. Kal Lis 2014.04.22

    Just watched this. I was afraid it might frighten the young'uns if I played during the school day.

    Cory, I have to agree with Rorschach, lose the pens in the upper vest pocket. I've read enough of your debate ballots to guess that you would have told young'uns debating in front of you to hide the pens as well.

    The vague Howie answers sound really similar to the vague Rhoden plan/musing/talking points that were on DWC earlier today. Love the cliches.

  27. grudznick 2014.04.22

    I watched it also. It was wonderful! I always wondered what sort of insaner activities went on in that place and I am glad to see Mr. H has lost none of his animation during his exile to the libbie coast.

  28. grudznick 2014.04.22

    Mrs. S, do you not apologize to Mr. Hickey and admit that he went after Dr. Boz harder and more often than anybody else did? Perhaps you weren't paying attention to the goings on by Mr. Hickey last week. He was going on some.

  29. Barry Smith 2014.04.22

    Cory my friend ... talk radio is in your future!!!

  30. Paul Seamans 2014.04.22

    I see that billionaire Tom Steyer, the environmental activist against the KXL, has promised campaign funding to candidates to help defeat Mike Rounds. Does Stace Nelson know this?

  31. Gayle 2014.04.22

    Good job! Was a pleasure to see what you look like and sound. I think you should do more of the videos...maybe you could replace the local news.

  32. Thad Wasson 2014.04.22

    It's pronounced Gor-Don.

  33. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.23

    R, I agree that Pressler may have more to offer than the conventional wisdom might expect. He's talking about issues that are more specific and more appealing to moderates and Democrats than the issues on which Howie will campaign.

    (But a pocket protector? I've never had a pen-splosion; why bother? ;-) )

  34. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.23

    Bree, Jenny, for what it's worth, I'll vouch for Hickey on the Bosworth issue and reject the notion that he's just seeking attention. If he were just seeking attention, he'd look for sustainable ways to keep that attention flowing. Undermining a vindictive Republican candidate in the primary, opposing the death penalty, and challenging the usury industry are not ways to keep yourself in the glowing limelight of party favor.

    Plus, Hickey isn't making his own web TV show.

  35. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.23

    Roger and TG are right, too, that Howie will not make Dem inroads. Give me a room of 100 Dems (hey, we could find that and then some at McGovern Day this Saturday!), and I'll bet we'll find 55 who will vote for Weiland, 35 who will skip voting (too discouraged about South Dakota politics or too busy to vote—we need to find and motivate these 35!), 5 who will vote for Rounds (personal/business connections, snark against Rick or his brother Kevin for challenging SHS), 4 who will vote for Pressler (nostalgia), and 1 who will vote for Howie (margin of error: drunk, confused, not paying attention).

  36. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.04.23

    Kal Lis, have told kids that on debate ballots, or just on interp ballots? I know I've told kids not to talk so fast or wave their hands unnecessarily....

  37. mikeyc, that's me! 2014.04.23

    Good interview, Cory.
    Maybe you should take over Stephen Colberts show.

  38. Lynn G. 2014.04.23

    Cory have you considered doing a Madville Times video podcast? Can we use Liberty Today's music from their intro with some type of patriotic background?

    How about parachuting from a plane and when landing firmly plant with one knee to the ground a United States and South Dakota Flag near a well known SD landmark while the Liberty Today intro music is playing.

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