Indy Shaking Up South Dakota Senate Race Says He’d Be ‘Friend Of Obama’

October 9, 2014 4:29 pm

The independent candidate helping to muck up the South Dakota Senate race told The Hill on Wednesday that he’d be a “friend of Obama” if elected.

Larry Pressler is a former Republican Senator, but is running this year as an independent in a three-way race with Republican Mike Rounds, an ex-governor, and Democrat candidate Rick Weiland. He doesn’t have much money, but he has been nipping at Rounds’ heels in some recent polling, putting the race into the national spotlight.

Like a fellow meddlesome independent in Kansas, Greg Orman, Pressler has been coy about who he would caucus with if elected. But he told The Hill that he did not regret his 2008 and 2012 votes for Obama.

“I don’t regret those votes, ’cause on that day, that’s how I felt,” Pressler, who left the Senate in 1997 after losing to Democrat Tim Johnson, who is retiring this year, said.

According to The Hill, Pressler supports Obamacare, but doesn’t like how Obama has handled the federal budget deficit.

“I disagree with Obama on many many things. I am not an Obama supporter, so to speak, but I am on the Affordable Care Act,” he said. He added: “I think Barack Obama has struggled with [the presidency]. He’s done some very good things, but he’s done a lot of things that I don’t agree with, especially in the area of the deficit.”

Pressler also said that he thought the Republican Party had moved “far to the right” and that he would caucus with “with whichever party will give me votes on certain issues.”

TPM’s PollTracker average currently has Rounds at 35 percent, Pressler at 29.3 percent and Weiland at 28 percent.

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