At present, no one seems to know for certain if Matt McGovern, grandson to the McGovern of ’72, will actually run against John Thune in next year’s senate election. Of course, that shouldn’t stop us from considering why it might be a good thing if he did. So it is that I give you four reasons I hope he runs:
- Competition is always good for the taxpayer. One of the lessons that seems to be coming out of the NY 23 race is that the voters were looking for a real choice–and didn’t seem to get one until Doug Hoffman joined. Ms. Scozzofava’s decision to throw her support behind her erstwhile Democrat opponent seems to confirm that the voters were not really getting much of a choice. So, it would be good for Senator Thune to have someone who appears ideologically opposed to him on the other side of the ticket.
- McGovern is firmly in the President’s camp. While other South Dakotans might find themselves trying to straddle the fence on issues so as to not alienate voters, it would appear that (at least so far) Matt McGovern has hitched his chariot to the star that is Barack Obama. He (McGovern) was an early player in the President’s campaign here in South Dakota and now he works for a group, Repower America, which is absolutely in line with the President’s plans to make us all greener whether we like it or not. His inclusion in the race will allow the President’s policies to be part of the discussion for this statewide office.
- Renewable energy (ethanol, wind, etc) is a policy area which Thune has already staked out. While I’m certain that McGovern will run on more than his green energy stance, I find the probable agreements between Thune and McGovern in this policy area to be most interesting (and wonder how they will successfully differentiate themselves in this regard).
- South Dakota seems to have an affinity for descendants of politicians. This is evident in the election of Herseth Sandlin and the promotion of Junior Johnson to his current role. There is no question that the name McGovern resonates with a group of voters who believe that we need to get back to the good old days of progressivism on the prairie. Whether he is truly a chip off the old block remains to be seen, but the race would be a good place to find that out.
I’m certain that I could come up with other reasons, but these were the low-hanging fruit. I would be interested to know what reasons you might have for encouraging (or discouraging) this possible match-up for the 2010 election.