Senate hopeful ‘fired up, motivated’
Published: Thursday, March 13th, 2014
Rick Weiland, the lone Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate in South Dakota, came into a Saturday afternoon meeting in Custer “fired up and motivated” in his quest to win the seat being vacated by Democrat Tim Johnson who is retiring this year.
“We used to have government of, for and by the people. Now it’s big corporations. We need to take back our government and our country,” Weiland, 55, told a group of 20 Democratic supporters at Bitter Esters.
With his second Custer campaign visit, Weiland is fulfilling a campaign promise to visit all 311 incorporated towns in the state.
“We made a commitment to earn the right to represent South Dakota,” said the Madison native.
So far, he has been in 305 towns and has only six to go. His day started last Saturday in Hermosa and went south on Highway 79 to Fairburn and Buffalo Gap and on to Hot Springs, Edgemont, Pringle and Custer.
When he returns to his home in Sioux Falls, he will have visited 57 towns on this recent trip west.
“We’re taking this very seriously. It’s important to visit with people and share ideas,” Weiland said.
“Big money gets in the way of the voting process. Big money makes big buys on the radio and television and in print. Money affects good public policy and that’s sad,” he said.
The candidate claimed cuts to Head Start, education and roads and bridges could be reversed with a different tax policy in this country.
“We have a government that is looking out for billionaires and not regular people. Boeing made $35 billion last year and paid no taxes,” Weiland said.
He added General Electric, Verizon, Google and Apple to the list of large corporations that pay no income taxes.
“It’s all legal and it just makes no sense to me. That’s what I mean about taking our country back,” he said.
The recently-passed Farm Bill was another topic Weiland touched on.
“We finally got one. A lot of those dollars go to the top 4 percent of producers in the country. We are subsidizing large corporations at the expense of family farms,” he said.
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