Daschle-Thune

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Fraud

In Mississippi they had a contentious US Senate Primary Runoff, and with the close and hostile race, now come the accusations of voter fraud.
There are a lot of people on both sides saying that McDaniel should just concede and go off into the scrap heap of candidates that got the once-over by voter fraud and voter deception.

I would like to show you that sometimes just letting something pass by can come back to bite you in the ass (or shoulder-World Cup reference-check).

Permit me to take you on a short journey in the Wayback Machine. It’s November 5th, 2002 and a three term congressman (lived up to his promise of only serving three terms when he was elected in the Contract with America 1994 election) has challenged a sitting senator that is somewhat well-liked as a Blue politician in a Red State. Senator Tim Johnson and Former Congressman John Thune waged a battle for the seat. On Election Night it looked like Thune was going to pull the upset and win. Thune calls it a night with only three counties left to report (all Indian Counties with small populations.) He woke up the next morning to find that he had, in fact, lost the race by 528 votes.

http://articles.latimes.com/2002/nov/14/nation/na-briefs14.3

There were a lot of voter fraud accusations, with Bob Novak being one of the loudest voices. One story was that people from outside the state were working the reservations to get Native Americans to vote using all sorts of graft. The names of those suspected included one White House Senior Advisor Dan Pfeiffer.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/theoval/2013/03/27/obama-tim-johnson-dan-pfeiffer-john-thune/2023999/

Instead of fighting an uphill battle of a court case with only a small chance of winning, Thune conceded to Johnson, and let Johnson retain his Senate seat.

Well, Thune decided in 2004 to take on the sitting Minority Leader of the Senate, Tom Daschle. Again, another battle of titans of South Dakota politics. But this time, Thune squeaks out a victory, sending the Minority leader home… Well not home, exactly; Tom has been a resident of the Beltway since leaving office.
So instead of the South Dakota Democrat Senator being the Minority leader of the Senate, the Democrats had to choose another Leader. For the most part, seniority put Nevada Senator Harry Reid in that position. Then in 2006, when the Democrats retook the Senate, Harry Reid became Majority Leader, where before Thune, it could have been easily been Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle.

I do believe that Senator Daschle would have run the Senate very differently from Reid, and probably would have worked with other side much more than Reid has. Reid has become President Obama’s de facto veto pen.

So when certain parties push the idea of fighting or not fighting a close election, or maybe contesting an unethical election, they should ponder the idea that their decisions at that time could have long-lasting effects in the future.