Saturday, May 17, 2014

Will Mike Rounds Ever Get It Right When It Comes To The Affordable Care Act? You Can Run From Obamacare, Mr. Rounds, But You Can't Hide.

    I stand corrected.  Yesterday's post about Thursday night's GOP debate on Public TV noted that a point of contention came when former Governor and clear front-runner Mike Rounds was charged "with being complicit in developing Obamacare because he had worked on a panel studying healthcare reform with then Democratic Senator Tom Daschle."  I noted that "Rounds claimed that he had 'never worked with Daschle' on Obamacare."  Then I prematurely blew it off by saying "I'm not sure this can be verified."  Turned out I was oh-so-wrong on that last point, a major one considering that the Rounds campaign says the candidate "couldn't sleep" over the Affordable Care Act because of what Rounds claims it can do to Medicare, namely gutting it and hurting seniors like Mike Rounds' dad in the process. Though the claim itself has been discredited by Politifact, the Rounds campaign continues to press it.  Naturally, being identified with the implementation of ACA in South Dakota doesn't look real good on the resume of someone whose claim to a United States Senate seat is based in large part on his contempt for it.  It's no surprise that Rounds categorically denied his participation in ACA's entree into South Dakota.  But, like Rounds' spurious claim that "Obamacare" will hurt seniors receiving Medicare benefits, the former Governor's contention that he had nothing to do with developing it for South Dakota has been challenged and discredited by the facts.  
     In a post this morning at South Dakota's best political blog The Madville Times, my good friend Cory Heidelberger ran some information provided by candidate Stace Nelson that shreds Rounds' claim that he had nothing to do with a panel involving Tom Daschle and the ACA.  First, to quote Rounds in the debate, he said, "Tom Daschle and I have never served on a joint committee to implement ObamaCare."  Is this an unequivocal denial?  I'd say yes. 
Is it true?  You decide.  In a Rapid City Journal article dated February 11, 2011, reporter Kevin Woster wrote:  "Rounds said Friday that he has joined a task force affiliated with the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington, D.C., where former South Dakota Sen. Tom Daschle has been a co-leader in health care reform work since 2008 . . . Daschle said Friday that he welcomes Rounds to a bipartisan effort he considers crucial to health care reform. 'It is the only way this will ever work," Daschle said. "Our primary purpose is to explore how states can move forward in providing health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. I am delighted to be working with Gov. Rounds on this' " [Kevin Woster, "Former Gov. Rounds Joins Health Insurance Task Force," Rapid City Journal, 2011.02.11].    I don't know about you, but I would have to say that Rounds lied in the debate.  
     Now that Rounds has been exposed as being complicit in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act that he publicly deplores--to the point that in one of his videos he trots out his own dad as an audio-visual aid in order to emotionally empower his antagonism toward ACA--I trust that he has made the appropriate explanations and apologies to his family.  (And please, Mr. Rounds, don't tell me to leave your family out of this.  You're the one that brought them in.)  Next step would be to explain to voters that he was for Obamacare before he was against it, then hope that his standing in the campaign might merit a bit of the respect that it just lost.  




  2. John,
    Thanks for acknowledging the error and the Rounds lie.
    Nelson appeared to win the debate, in my opinion, because of this point and a few others. While the other candidates charged forward with the hate Obama and hate Obamacare, Stace was the one that was specific and called Rounds out with some level of substance.
    I suspect the real reason that Rounds is losing sleep is because he used and lied to Grandpa Don.
    Somehow, good ole South Dakota common sense and South Dakota values have lost in the Rounds campaign.
    I did notice you didn't proclaim a new winner of the debate.

    1. I consider Nelson the winner of the debate's aftermath.

  3. I stick with your assessment Friday, John, and my agreeing opinion yesterday. If the Republican primary voters cannot be cajoled from their love affair with the former governor, because of his wasting of tens of millions of taxpayer dollars as well as hundreds of millions of investment dollars in failed EB-5 projects as well as other economic development projects, then his easily provable gaff in the debate won't change their minds either.

    He has been a cheap huckster ever since he was elected governor, (and incidentally I didn't think that, at the time) but for him to have over 60% approval in a five candidate field when all he needs is a plurality, after the corruption in which he has participated, tells me that SD voters don't pay any more attention than does the national electorate.