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Friday, August 15, 2008

Argus: Johnson Absence at Debates Coming to Forefront

The "mainstream" media is starting to acknowledge that Senator Tim Johnson's decision not to attend any debates against Republican challenger Joel Dykstra this campaign season is becoming a very important issue with the voters.

Today the Argus Leader ran an article titled "No debating: Issue Comes to campaign's forefront" which said

"The bottom line is politics is a persuasive business. The demonstration of one's ability to be persuasive is right at the core of effective politics," said John Pohlman, vice president of creative services for the Sioux Falls advertising firm Lawrence & Schiller.

Ads and endorsements are not the sole currency of a campaign. That's why it's important for Johnson to personally connect with voters and dispel doubts about whether he can continue to serve, Pohlman said.

Rod Woodruff, founder of the Buffalo Chip Campground in Sturgis and a Belle Fourche lawyer, said it's a tough topic among people he talks with West River.

"The truth of the matter is, everybody sympathizes with Senator Johnson and with his physical condition. Everybody wants to tiptoe around that condition, and they don't want to seem callous and insensitive to it," he said. "But the bottom line is people have got to wonder."

Johnson's decision not to debate may have actually helped Dykstra's exposure:
In doing so, the Johnson campaign attempted to limit his opponent's ability to draw public attention, Dykstra said.

"But I think we've gotten that anyway," he said. "A lot more people have talked to me. They are looking at our Web site. They are researching my positions. There are more editorials, more appearances of my name in print over the last week, and I don't see any evidence of it going away. It clearly has become the issue of the campaign."

The Argus had this video on their website featuring Dykstra and Johnson sharing their ideas on energy.


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