I don’t usually respond to other SD political blogs but found this recent post at SD War College blog rather informative. War College reported South Dakota’s former Congresswoman received in compensation over a half million dollars in the last reporting year. The information comes from a Morningstar report of Compensation for Key executives of Sioux Falls based Raven Industries.
I am guessing the author at War College is not a reader of Morningstar reports but identified Mrs. Herseth Sandlin’s 620K+ from a Google notification or the like, that tracks SHS for him.
I agree Mrs. Herseth Sandlin’s salary is handsome but do not believe it is among the reasons she decided against being a candidate for the U S Senate in 2014.
Should SHS have entered the 2014 Senate race, she would have been perhaps the most formidable candidate from either party; most importantly the only battle tested candidate who had been through the real war of a campaign. The perhaps exception is Kristi Noem, who also chose not to seek the Senate seat and is running for re election to the House of Representatives. It is not lost on followers of S D politics that now Rep Noem defeated Rep Herseth in 2010 in a close contest.
The previous big knock on Stephanie was she is DC; went to school there, then went to work there, and then came back only to run for Congress. Except for the school part, the her working in Washington is a very similar to the work histories of Larry Pressler (another 2014 Senate candidate), Tom Daschle, and to some degree John Thune who returned to South Dakota after working in DC to work near State government and politics in Pierre (Party ED, State Government, and Association Exec) for eight years before running for the U S House.
Partisans in South Dakota often rail about those living and working in the Washington culture; i.e. they are not one of us. It’s an easy target. It certainly wounded Senator Daschle in his 2004 re elect when his District of Columbia real property tax exemption was disclosed.
Politicians in South Dakota speak often (sometimes unhappily) about our kids going out of State for higher education and careers. When one of the wanderers returns, often the same pols speak with glowing praise how South Dakota is a great place to come home and raise a family.
There is very positive magazine piece (in fact the cover story) about “Stephanie Herseth Sandlin, Wife, Mother, Leader” in the April/May issue of Sioux Falls Woman that tells such a similar story. (Her picture on the cover is quite a glamour shot.) Did she return for politics, fortune, or Zachary Lars Sandlin? You can decide for yourself, but I don’t believe it’s the dinero.
Combined with the very nice article (to my political eye – a puff piece) and with the recognition of her salary, what sparks my interest is the contrasting life of our former Representative and the politics of the President.
Raven Industries is not shelling out big bucks because she is not talented. Neither did Skadden Arps the established White Shoe law firm she worked for in Washington, DC. The girl is smart (Yea Groton High, Georgetown, and Georgetown Law!) and talented.
Mitt Romney, who was a product of meritocracy and believed in individual ability and initiative, was disparaged by Democrats for seeing America as a meritocracy, a Country where the talented progress based on their ability. In America those with brains, ideas, and a strong work ethic should succeed. We believers in the Meritocracy also believe the opportunity to succeed must be available to all. Consequently thus we understand the need for free public schools, free public lending libraries, and a society that provides opportunity to all.
Barack Obama sees America quite differently. Hardly a day does not go by that he is not out touting and preaching income redistribution and playing the class warfare card.
Clearly Stephanie Herseth Sandlin resides not only in South Dakota but in the Meritocracy camp as well.
Endbar –Repeating previous postings - the biggest difference between the two major political parties are: Republicans believe in the equality of opportunity, Democrats believe in equality of outcome.