Sunday, January 30, 2011

The Case for John

Jill Lawrence from Politics Daily is outlining what a lot of us have been thinking lately: John Thune is the best candidate to beat Obama in 2012. In her story, she quoted a few of the advantages Thune would bring to the table as a nominee:

"Thune's real strengths ... (may be) in his political savvy, his communication skills and his lack of baggage."

She goes on to contrast him with the other candidates: 

"Thune's generic conservative views, congressional career and intact marriage have kept him out of controversial territory. He wasn't once a tobacco lobbyist (Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour). He isn't a former governor who raised taxes (Mike Huckabee of Arkansas) or signed a health law similar to "Obamacare" (Mitt Romney of Massachusetts) or quit halfway through (Sarah Palin of Alaska) or seems boring (Tim Pawlenty of Minnesota). He hasn't had three wives and a widely publicized extramarital affair (former House speaker Newt Gingrich)." (emphasis mine)

As she points out, the case for Thune is very compelling.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Video: Thune's State of the Union Response

Video: Thune on Spending

Recently Sen. Thune was on CNBC with Larry Kudlow discussing federal spending and the President's State of the Union speech.

Decision Time

Alexander Mooney at the CNN Political Ticker is reporting Sen. Thune told a radio audience yesterday that he will have made a presidential decision by the end of February. While on conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt that he would have to "work a lot harder to get known". One of the distinct qualities Thune has is a lack of name recognition - yes, the downside is doesn't have as much time to decide, but an advantage is that with the right strategy he can craft a public image of a common sense Conservative without the baggage other candidates such as Palin or Romney might have.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

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McConnell Boosts Thune

Yesterday Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell encouraged Sen. Thune to make a Presidential run. In his remarks at a Politico Playbook Breakfast, he touted Thune's accomplishments in beating Tom Daschle, then the Senate Democratic Leader, and also mentioned Thune's home state strength in that South Dakota Democrats didn't even field a candidate against him in 2010. He also cited leadership and oratory skills as some of Thune's greatest strengths. You can read the Politico Morning Score report with the info here (this piece of info is towards the bottom of the page under "Swoon for Thune").

Monday, January 24, 2011

Video: Presidential Decision in Two Months

Here's video provided by Keloland TV in South Dakota in which Sen. Thune says he'll probably make a presidential decision within 30-60 days.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Weekend Update

  • Yesterday Thune acknowledged that a Presidential decision will probably be made with in the next 30-60 days. This timeline falls into late February or early March. Thune cites fear of becoming an early target as to the reason why the possible 2012 candidates haven't announced yet. You can read the news story from Keloland TV here.

  • KSFY in Sioux Falls is reporting that South Dakota Democrat George McGovern would support a Thune decision to run for president. McGovern, whom the history buffs will remember ran against Nixon in 1972, says "if he thinks he's prepared for it and wants to run I think that's what he should do."

  • The Adriondack Daily Enterprise is reporting New York Sen. Kristin Gillibrand (a Democrat) plans to sit my Sen. Thune during the State of the Union. Look for lots of Democrats and Republicans crossing the aisle and sitting next on each other during this years speech.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Early State Activity

  • The Argus Leader is reporting "increased activity" among John Thune fundraisers in New Hampshire as they have been making a number of calls on his behalf. When interviewed, New Hampshire investor and Dartmouth professor Gregory Slayton acknowledged that he has been making calls on Thune's behalf and is in discussion with the Senator about a possible campaign.
  • Thune has also been invited to a conservative lecture series being held in Iowa, according to TPM. Other probable 2012 candidates such as Tim Pawlenty, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, and Herman Cain have submitted their RSVP, while Sen. Thune has yet to make his. If he agrees to speak, it will only serve as yet another indicator that he is running.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Thune Speaks on Obamacare Repeal, Controlling Spending

The Yanktown Press & Dakotan is reporting that Senator Thune spoke Tuesday on the need for reigning in government spending and repealing Obamacare. He predicts the repeal effort will pass the House and die in the Senate, forcing Republicans to focus on repealing individual parts of the legislation like the unconstitutional mandate for insurance. Although he was speaking in his own state, both of these items will certainly be the major issues shaping the 2012 presidential campaign. As I noted earlier, if Senator Thune is outspoken for the repeal effort in the Senate, that exposure would help position him for a presidential run.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Monday Notes

  • The Boston Herald's Morning Briefing is highlighting Sen. Thune's meetings with New Hampshire political operatives as he considers a run in 2012. You can read this information in full here.
  •  Also from the Herald is an opinion piece on the factor Obamacare will play in the next election and how it is likely to "trip-up" both President Obama and Mitt Romney, who instituted a similar program while he was governor of Massachusetts. Holly Robichaud also mentions the role Sen. Thune will play if the House repeals Obamacare and sends the bill to the Senate. If he is running in 2012, look for him to be very vocal in support of repeal. You can read the article here.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Thune to Speak at CPAC

The CNN Political Ticker is reporting Sen. Thune still plans to visit the Conservative Political Action Conference in February. 

This event will certainly help boost Thune's national profile and bolster support among conservatives.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Thune to Address Missouri GOP

The Missouri news blog PoliticMo is reporting that Sen. Thune will be addressing the Republican state annual meeting in late February. It is also noted that another potential 2012 candidate may be speaking, although the state GOP has yet to release a name.

You can read the article outlining this news here.

Thune Makes Statement on Giffords Tragedy

According to the Daily Republic, Sen. Thune expressed his sympathy to Rep. Giffords and other victims of the Arizona shooting by saying “Kimberley and I extend our thoughts and prayers to the victims of this horrific act and their families. This kind of violence has no place in our society. Congresswoman Giffords, her staff, her Arizona constituents, and their families and loved ones are on our minds and in our hearts at this difficult time.”

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Thune Invited to Iowa Forum

The Des Moines Register is reporting Sen. Thune, along with 11 other possible 2012 candidates, is being invited to an event sponsored by the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition on March 7th.

This event and the group sponsoring it will certainly play a major role in giving Sen. Thune momentum among social conservatives in the early primary state of Iowa.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

"This Week" Roundtable

Today Sen. Thune was mentioned on a short-list of 2012 contenders on the Roundtable segment of ABC's This Week. From a list of ten possible names, Thune was narrowed down by panelist George Will into a list of the top 5 strongest candidates who could perform in key areas of the country.

Additionally, Will discounted Sarah Palin's electability by saying "she cannot compete where elections are decided".

Also there's a link here to an article summarizing this piece of news and here for one outlining the facts surrounding a Thune candidacy.