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Yankton County Observer Joins Chorus Rejecting Rounds on EB-5

Another South Dakota newspaper editor throws the B.S. flag at Republican Senate candidate Mike Rounds on the EB-5 scandal:

Brian J. Hunhoff, editorial cartoon, Yankton County Observer, 2014.10.17
Brian J. Hunhoff, editorial cartoon, Yankton County Observer, 2014.10.17

YCO editor Brian J. Hunhoff pens the above cartoon to accompany an editorial giving South Dakota a failing grade on open government. Hunhoff says Rounds's blame-dodging exemplifies our opaque government and insults the voters:

The blame-dodging by former Gov. Mike Rounds would be entertaining if it wasn’t so troubling. Of course, Rounds wants to keep his $9 million Senate campaign afloat, but he looks foolish denying any responsibility for a scandal that occurred on his watch. Many of his excuses insult our state’s collective intelligence.

Rounds’ arrogance was apparent in his refusal to appear in person before the impotent Government Operations and Audit Committee. His defensiveness was revealed in snarky written answers to questions about EB-5. His sloppiness was evident after one key response was quickly proved untrue and he asked to change his answer [Brian J. Hunhoff, "State Still Earning Bad Grades in Open Government," Yankton County Observer, 2014.10.17].

The Yankton County Observer echoes the disdain for Rounds that the Mobridge Tribune registered last week with Katie Zerr's indictment of Mike Rounds's dishonesty. How many more South Dakota newspapers will have the courage to deem Mike Rounds unworthy of South Dakota's trust.


  1. Bill Fleming 2014.10.22

    Did you watch his Argus #100 interview, Cory? It was the next best thing to your being there. Sure like to hear your take on it.

  2. Lanny V Stricherz 2014.10.22

    Bill, Since I cancelled my subscription to the AL last week, I get a message error when trying to link to anything related to the paper. Can you give me a brief summary of what was said on this 100 eyes? Thanks.

  3. Rorschach 2014.10.22

    Add "I don't recall that meeting" to the list. More obfuscation to come...

  4. caheidelberger Post author | 2014.10.22

    I haven't watched yet, Bill! (Video drives me nuts: instead of being able to scan text for nuggets, I have sit through the whole presentation waiting for something to happen that never does, as I just did with the most recent Mike Myers press conference.)

    I invite your commentary: did Rounds say anything to Patrick Lalley that would neutralize the criticism lodged by Brian Hunhoff and Katie Zerr?

  5. Rorschach 2014.10.22

    Did he tell Patrick Lalley how good Lally is looking these days? Ask him how the family is?

  6. Bill Fleming 2014.10.22

    Well it's about 70 minutes long and covers a wide array of topics. Mike talks really fast, so you have to listen carefully. First thing I caught was his admission that asking PACs to stop 'helping' would amount to 'coordination' with them if they actually complied, and would thus be illegal. That exposes how disingenuous his campaign has been in demanding Weiland call the PACs supporting him and asking them to stop. The interviewer grills him pretty good on EB-5 stuff, and Rounds continues to minimize the issue at every turn, much like the illustration shown on this post. His discussion of Benda slowed down the pace a little as if to emphasize that it all really is Benda's fault. I'll have to listen again, but it seems he kind of beat around the bush about why he didn't pink-slip Joop. Seems like he still thinks he did a good job. The ACA discussion was pretty interesting, you can tell he's an insurance guy. No doubt about it, Rounds knows how to give a sales pitch. The interviewer pushed pretty hard, but Rounds had an answer for everything. As with the Duffy recording, it would be good to have a transcript of this. There was a lot of ground covered. I need to listen to it again. It's probably as close as we'll get to having all of Rounds answers and non-answers in one neat bundle. May be worth re-upping your $9 online subscription, Lanny. Got a feeling quite a bit of news will be coming out of there over the next few weeks... Maybe even months.

  7. Bill Fleming 2014.10.22

    Rorschach, even Mike Rounds couldn't lie that well. ;-)

  8. tara volesky 2014.10.22

    Lanny, you don't need to be a subscriber to watch 100 eyes. Just google Argus Leader, scroll to videos and click the video you want to watch.

  9. Bill Fleming 2014.10.22

    In the interview, Rounds said Benda told him that he had a job working with an investor in the meat packing plant. He didn't say it was working for Joop, and Rounds says he didn't ask... Said he was just glad Rich had found a new job. His pitch was that he wanted to make sure everybody on his cabinet found work, since they were all technically unemployed at the end of his tenure as Gov.

  10. Bill Fleming 2014.10.22

    He has this way of glossing everything over. And he's very good at it.

  11. Chris S. 2014.10.22

    The list of excuses Rounds offers reminds me of the old joke: "So crooked he could hide behind a corkscrew."

  12. Rorschach 2014.10.22

    So Rounds would have fired Benda if he had known what Benda was doing? He didn't fire the Joopster when he found out the Joopster got SD into a lawsuit and concealed it. He didn't fire the Joopster for representing the state in a no-bid contract with the Joopster's private company - instead rewarding the Joopster with another bigger no-bid contract. Sgt. Schultz indeed. The question is why? How much were Mike Rounds/his businesses/his family paid by the Joopster and his associates?

  13. JeniW 2014.10.22

    Thank you Steve, I think that is a fitting comment about Rounds. :)

  14. Steve Sibson 2014.10.22

    JeniW, your welcome. And Cory must of liked it too because it didn't get deleted.

  15. mike from iowa 2014.10.22

    He's been dogged by criticism of how he managed EB-5, a federal program he championed as governor to recruit foreign investors to South Dakota projects.

    and yet he did not deny his role in the program as has been his MO lately.

Comments are closed.