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Mercer: Rounds Owns EB-5

Hey, Republicans! When we ask you questions about Mike Rounds's use of the EB-5 visa investment program for economic development, stop shouting It's a federal program!!! Even Bob Mercer isn't buying that dodge:

Rounds and Weiland have run TV ads lately on the EB-5 matter. Neither of their ads is totally accurate. Rounds’ ad is the bigger dodge. EB-5 was indeed his program. His Cabinet pursued expansions of it hard from the federal agency that oversees it. His Cabinet secretary Richard Benda signed the contract in 2009 privatizing EB-5 administration, with state government to receiving percentages of the fees paid by foreign investors to the private company run by Joop Bollen of Aberdeen [Bob Mercer, "Some Democratic Backlash over Column about Pressler," Pure Pierre Politics, 2014.09.15].

Michael Larson says "EB-5 Is Mike Rounds." Maybe that's a stretch, too: technically, EB-5 is every President since George H. W. Bush, Congress, hundreds of Regional Center operators and hordes of lawyers and finaglers who make bank selling green cards to immigrants who think wealth means never having to wait in line with regular folks. But as Mercer says, in South Dakota, EB-5 is Mike Rounds's program.


  1. Tim 2014.09.16

    Just one more fact the Rounds campaign won't inconvenience themselves with, move along nothing to see here.

  2. Roger Cornelius 2014.09.16

    Mike Rounds needs to show up somewhere in the state and tell us what other federal programs administers, but is not responsible for.

  3. Jane Smith 2014.09.16

    A financial and asset audit will set free all suspicions. If the EB-5 were truly a fed program, then all the more the citizens have every right to know and transparency a given. Only cheating cowards dupe public money into personal gain and act like they had no idea.

  4. Jana 2014.09.16

    Funny how David Montgomery is still lobbying for a job with the former governor who left the state with a deficit:

    "Democrats have tried to make EB-5 a political issue as they hope to beat Rounds and Gov. Dennis Daugaard in the November general election..."

    Try this line of thinking David: "The former governor Rounds oversight or lack of oversight has become an issue in the campaign."

    There. Fixed it for you.

  5. Roger Cornelius 2014.09.16

    What is this? Montgomery now has a love affair with the EB-5 governor?
    When he was at the Journal, it was Thune that was his hero, and could do no wrong.

  6. Jane Smith 2014.09.17

    To mince words to confuse the public is insulting. The devil is always in the details. To make a major decision as a leader, and to say, or deny that he had no idea of the ABC of such an important program speaks to incompetence. And if not incompetence then that leader knew, and is denying to distance himself from the issues. And if he was truly duped by Joopster and his crew, Rounds should be most angry for being made to look incompetent. All the more these people should be called out publicly to provide the truth, instead of pointing fingers via memos.

  7. Jane Smith 2014.09.17

    Here is an after thought, if the article in the Argus declared that the Governor and SD was duped/swindled/con'd by Joop Bollen and James Park! Hmmm, then shouldn't the Republican Party want to get the ropes for these two instead of protecting them?

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