Mitchell SD (KELO-AM) The Dakotafest in Mitchell Wednesday was the political epicenter of South Dakota with back-to-back debates featuring the U-S Senate and Gubenatorial candidates.
In the Senate debate, his three challengers demanded that Republican frontrunner Mike Rounds give more answers about the EB-5 program as it was run when he was governor. Rounds defended the program for bringing many economic projects to South Dakota.
Rounds and Democrat Rick Weilland strongly disagreed on the future of the U-S Department of Education. Rounds wants to get rid of it. Weilland says that's just not realistic and just a talking point.
Independent Gordon Howie pledged to never vote to raises taxes, any kind of tax. Independent Larry Pressler says his independence would help get things done in Congress. He mentioned the effectiveness of former Senator Joe Lieberman when he switched from being a Democrat to an Independent.
There were no fireworks in the gubenatorial debate featuring incumbent Republican Dennis Daugaard, Democrat Susan Wismer, and Independent Mike Myers.
Daugaard says his top priority would be to maintain the financial strength of South Dakota and never spend money that wasn't there to spend. Wismer says her top priority would be expanding Medicaid. Myers says he would work on health care reform, including a re-thinking of the tax exempt status of the health care systems in the state.