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Rounds Takes Fire Left and Right on His Lies About ObamaCare

Rick Weiland and Stace Nelson are clearly in cahoots. The Democratic candidate for Senate issued a press release yesterday saying GOP primary frontrunner Mike Rounds is lying about the Affordable Care Act. Shortly thereafter, Rounds's primary challenger Nelson issued a press release saying that Mike Rounds is lying about the Affordable Care Act.

Of course, Weiland and Nelson come at it from completely different angles. Weiland offers the blatantly obvious and widely reported facts that the ACA is not reducing any care that senior citizens receive under Medicare, contrary to the fear-mongering of Rounds's sleepless Grampa Don ad. It also points out that Rounds's Republican pals are the ones pointing the carving knives at Medicare. Weiland's assault on Rounds's fiction has a broader audience: it appeals to supporters and beneficiaries of the law while educating folks in the middle and even opponents about the cynical falsehoods Rounds is telling about the largely successful ACA.

Nelson digs deeper for a different crowd. In a message aimed strictly at the conservative base he needs to show up on June 3, Nelson paints Rounds as a facilitator of the Affordable Care Act. He puts Rounds in the room with President Barack Obama and Tom Daschle talking health care reform. Most importantly, Nelson follows up on a claim he made that Rounds worked with a task force whose specific purpose was to implement ObamaCare. Rounds responded that the task force claim was "flat-out incorrect." "Tom Daschle and I have never served on a joint committee to implement ObamaCare," Rounds said in Thursday night's debate.

Nelson rebutted just a few minutes later that viewer could fact-check Rounds's claim by pointing viewers to a February 11, 2011, Rapid City Journal which shows that, once again, Rounds is lying via semantics:

Rounds said Friday that he has joined a task force affiliated with the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington, D.C., where former South Dakota Sen. Tom Daschle has been a co-leader in health care reform work since 2008.

...Daschle said Friday that he welcomes Rounds to a bipartisan effort he considers crucial to health care reform.

"It is the only way this will ever work," Daschle said of. "Our primary purpose is to explore how states can move forward in providing health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. I am delighted to be working with Gov. Rounds on this" [Kevin Woster, "Former Gov. Rounds Joins Health Insurance Task Force," Rapid City Journal, 2011.02.11].

I invite Mr. Rounds to square his flat-out denial in the debate with his and Mr. Daschle's statements to Mr. Woster in February 2011.

Below is Team Nelson's full press release, complete with hyperlinks to the supporting documents.


Stace Nelson calls out Rounds for dishonesty on Obamacare

Fulton, SD—South Dakota State Representative and US Senate Candidate Stace Nelson called out fellow candidate Mike Rounds for being dishonest in claiming that he opposes the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as “Obamacare.” The Act, passed by Congress and signed by President Obama in 2010, is often considered the President's signature piece of legislation.

Nelson listed a number of reasons why he felt this way:

“Mike Rounds brought Obamacare to South Dakota.

He met with President Obama in June of 2009 regarding how to push Obama's health reform agenda. In the press conference that followed, the President remarked 'I want to thank [Governor Rounds] publicly. And I look forward to working with [him] to get [health care reform] done for the American people and for the people of [South Dakota] in the weeks to come.'

Rounds opposed the Health Care Freedom Act in the 2010 legislative session in Pierre and sent his own chief of staff, (Neil Fulton, Rounds' personal representative), to lobby against it when it came up for a committee hearing in Pierre.

In 2011, shortly before leaving office, the Rounds Administration pre-filed Senate Bills 43 and 38, which helped implement Obamacare in South Dakota.

His administration applied to the federal government and received millions of dollars in grants to implement Obamacare here in South Dakota.

Shortly after leaving office in early 2011, former Governor Rounds joined a task force with former Senator Tom Daschle, Obama's first choice to head the Health and Human Services Department, to find compromise solutions on how to implement Obamacare. Daschle expressed his pleasure in working with Rounds toward this goal.

Although he claims he sued the federal government, the Attorney General of South Dakota, a separate constitutional office, actually did that.”

As part of the effort to set the record straight, the Stace Nelson for US Senate campaign will be airing a 60-second radio ad statewide, as well as advertising through other media [Rep. Stace Nelson, press release, 2014.05.16].

Even if Rounds survives the primary, he won't escape this fire from the Right. Independent Senate candidate Gordon Howie will surely pick up right where Stace Nelson leaves off and run these same charges, casting doubt on Rounds's dedication to blocking and reversing the Affordable Care Act. Those Nelson-Howie charges will appeal to a much smaller segment of voters than Weiland's assault on Rounds's fear-mongering, but those charges do damage that Weiland never could.

As Larry might put it, Enterprise and Excelsior at Khitomer. Boom, boom, boom, Left and Right!


  1. Rhino Lynn 2014.05.17

    Has anyone checked with Tom Daschle lately for a statement regarding a clarification on his involvement in working with Rounds on ACA? Unless I'm misinterpreting all of this it might be a great way to further discredit Rounds.

  2. Donald Pay 2014.05.17

    Republicans put themselves into this box by taking a Republican solution to the health care issue, which Obama tweaked slightly, and turning it into a Democratic idea. Of course the dumb crowd, which at this point includes most of the Republican Party, would never have realized that what became "Obamacare" was not a Democratic idea. When you have idiots to pander to you end up painting yourself in the box that all the Republican candidates find themselves in--attacking a Republican idea because a Democrat adopted it.

  3. grudznick 2014.05.17

    When you call it Obamacare, codgers like me distrust it. I'm positive it is a very bad thing. It will tax people out of their money for libbie purposes.

  4. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.05.17

    Lynn, I don't have an updated Daschle quote, but I do have the Bipartisan Policy Center's mildly pleased response to the Supreme Court's affirmation of the ACA:

    “Today’s Supreme Court decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act allows us to replace uncertainty with confidence on how to move forward to improve the American health care system. With this decision behind us, we can take a fresh look at our health care cost, quality and structural challenges and turn them into opportunities for American taxpayers and our health care businesses, professionals and patients. With so much of our budget deficits at the federal, state and personal level being driven by health care costs, we cannot afford to waste any more time. We must urgently resolve our health system’s high cost and inefficiency problems.

    "Now is the time for viable solutions, not angry rhetoric. We urge the administration and members of Congress from both parties to swiftly launch a substantive national dialogue on how to move forward – together with the private sector – on transforming our health care system. The Bipartisan Policy Center stands ready to help make this happen.”

    Rounds's bio still says he is active in the BPC. So he was and is active in an organization that seemed happy to put the debate of ACA repeal behind us and move forward with additional solutions.

  5. mike from iowa 2014.05.17

    Money Boo Boo was all for Money Boo Boo care as Mass. Guv,until he ran for Potus and then Money Boo Boo was against Money Boo Boo care.

  6. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.05.17

    grudz, How do you like your Roosevelt Security and your Johnsoncare? If there had been enough of the old curmudgeons like grudz around during WWII, we would now be greeting each other with Sieg Heil and the Nazi salute.

    Hate to tell you grudz, but anyone with health issues in this country, especially if they don't have adequate healthcare coverage, is already being taxed to the hilt, and the system we have had and allowed to expand at the rate that it has over the last 30 to 40 years is a large share of the reason we have the national as well as personal debt that we do.

  7. grudznick 2014.05.17

    FDR did an ok job, Mr. Stricherz.

    Heh. It's been years and years since somebody compared me to a Nazi sympathizer, and that fellow was wearing a bed-sheet hat.

  8. Jerry 2014.05.17

    Tom Daschle already had the money quote in the Rapid City Journal. Nelson will beat him like a pinata with that to prove what a lying liar that dude is. He is not a salesman, Rounds is a common crook, big difference. Nelson also has the high ground on the EB-5 as well as Nelson was not in the legislature when the corruption games were being played. I hope Rounds keeps up the You Tube advertising on Obamacare along with the rest of his blather, more words equals more anvils for the good ship Rounds. Soon it will start taking on water.

  9. Steve Hickey 2014.05.17

    Rounds was the governor of SD. He better had been working on solutions for the uninsured in our state during his tenure. That he was in meeting and meeting with people left and right was his job. To construe some of that as him being a crafter of or support of OBAMAcare during the presidency of BUSH strikes me as striving. Especially in light of his support of several AG push backs on the ACA, it seems like unfair misrepresentation of the facts to me. Do these candidates who criticize him on this issue have any ideas to sell us on, or any experiences to point to of how they got different people in the room talking about solving our big problems? No. None at all.

  10. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.05.17

    Reverend Hickey, He was the Governor. He was the only one who was in position other than the three elected officials that we send to Washington, unless he were to designate his Lt Governor DD to do the work to negotiate the improvement of healthcare for our citizens. He should be ashamed that he denies having worked with the Federal government to improve healthcare for our citizens, especially if he was doing so, but maybe even more shameful considering that now because of his former Lt Governor DD and the total of the Republican administration in Pierre we still have not healthcare coverage for 48,000 or 6% of our citizens. What would Jesus say?

  11. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.05.17

    Beside which, Reverend Hickey, if you can stand up for him in his proven absolute lie about ACA stealing from Medicare, you are standing up for a liar.

  12. Jerry 2014.05.17

    The dates of Rounds visits to Washington with Daschle do not match the dates of his being governor. He met in Washington as a private citizen Mr. Hickey, no one would begrudge anyone for trying to solve problems beyond party lines, it is when you lie about it that is not right. What do you say about that in your church, do you condone lying?

  13. larry kurtz 2014.05.17

    President Obama admitted he screwed up by pushing Geithner's nomination ahead of Daschle's. Max Baucus is ObamaCare's maker: if we Dems have someone to vilify it would be him.

    Marty could be doing a backdoor favor by getting in the lawsuit testing ACA's individual mandate as a tax.

  14. Jerry 2014.05.17

    When Rounds built his shack on the river (life is funny) he damned near got flooded out. I think we taxpayers saved his sorry fanny on that one like those leeches down in the dunes. Anyway, Rounds was in those meetings in Washington at the time of the flooding.

  15. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.05.17

    little bit of a complex there, grudz? I didn't compare you to a Nazi sympathizer. What I am saying, is that do you just want healthcare for yourself and the wealthy who can afford it or do you want it for everyone? You and so many like you are worried about paying a little bit of tax, but that is the only way to make sure that everyone has healthcare. That is what social security was all about, making sure that we didn't have seniors die because they didn't have the money to buy food and basics of life. Same with medicare and again for seniors. It has taken us another 50 years to get to the starting point to where we will offer the same for every American. Don't like it, fix it. It shouldn't have festered like the sore that it is, for all these many years.

  16. grudznick 2014.05.17

    So the bed-sheet hat days are behind you now then, eh Mr. Stricherz?

    I want my rations for the week and I don't want to die alone with an empty belly. You may have rich friends but most of my friends are ordinary fellows and gals.

  17. Jerry 2014.05.17

    Here are the screams of passion from Rep. Schmidt on her misinformation about the failure of the passage of Obamacare, it is priceless.

    But check out ole dufus Rounds ad on here as well. He sounds almost as bad as mean jean.

  18. Disgusted Dakotan 2014.05.18

    @Steve Hickey So you support and approve of Mike Rounds' efforts to enact Obamacare in SD?

    What does the AG push back on Obamacare have anything to do with Mike Rounds? You do realize that the AG is a separate SD Constitutional office from that of the governor and Mike Rounds effectively had nothing to do with the law suit?

    Interesting to hear that you as a Republican believe that Republicans should be creating more government to take care of the healthcare issue? Don't Republicans believe that it is their job to get government out of healthcare?

  19. Roger Elgersma 2014.05.18

    Rounds is an insurance agent first. The insurance industry had decided to not insure those who need it the most by eliminating preexisting conditions. So after failing at the very purpose of insurance, he now helped craft an national health care plan where the insurance industry will suck money out of everyone. No insurance industry is needed with national health insurance so there is no need for them at all so he goes to Washington to expand the insurance industry who has been the main culprit in the first place. So we should throw out both the insurance industry and Rounds. Rounds went to Washington to help craft the bad part of the affordable care act for his own industry's special interest and now he wants us to send him to Washington for everything. I think not.

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