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.