In May of 2014, I was trying to help a recently retired veteran and war hero, Corinna Robinson, by providing her with a voice outside the local blogs that drive the political conversation in South Dakota.
One of my favorite uncles used to say, “In life, there are eagles and ducks. Eagles soar; ducks quack.” Yesterday, nearly my entire day was taken up by a duck – Cory Allen Heidelberger. He used to be a teacher before he lost his job for poor performance and bullying according to these posts.
Update 14:28 CDT: Oops. Looks like I got tricked by someone speaking out of turn. The press release that got this post started came from one Kathy Scott, who has told me in earlier communications that she worked for Dakotafest. Scott tells me in the comment section that she doesn’t actually work for the Robinson campaign; she has simply donated money and volunteered. So I was incorrect when I said the press release came from the Robinson campaign itself. I apologize to all who were misled by the original headline and text. I have changed the headline to reflect this new information; I preserve the text below so all may understand what the fuss was about… and to remind campaigns to make sure their staff and volunteers understand what information is ready for prime time.
Original Post: A press release from Corinna Robinson’s House campaign comes circuitously to my inbox. Former Nebraska Governor and Senator Bob Kerrey says send Robinson to Washington:
Brookings, SD (May 7, 2014) — Former Presidential Candidate and U.S. Senator Bob Kerry announced today his endorsement of South Dakota Congressional Candidate U.S. Army Maj. Corinna Robinson, (ret). Kerry went into politics after retiring from military service. Like Kerry, Robinson spent 25 years in military service and plans to return to public service if the voters of South Dakota allow her. She is currently a favorite among veterans who have felt overlooked by the current administration’s lack of movement with stalled benefits and a backlog of claims.
Kerry is a former member of the elite Navy SEAL Team, a highly decorated Vietnam veteran who earned the Congressional Medal of Honor – America’s highest military honor. Kerry’s political career includes Governor of Kansas and U.S. Senator.
“In the months ahead, I look forward to speaking with many of my supporters who can assist with my campaign agenda that includes better education, growth in our business infrastructure and a way to strengthen our families,” says Robinson.
As Governor of Nebraska, Kerry focused on fiscal responsibility and worked to increase education and job skills. Robinson has championed the need to bring more technology companies into the state. She also wonders why the Keystone XL Pipeline has gained more attention than rural connectivity, connections that would have a lasting effect on the education of South Dakota’s youth.
Robinson has also been endorsed by South Dakota Senator Tim Johnson and former Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth Sandlin. To learn more about Corinna Robinson or to donate visit onto CorinnaforSD.com. To volunteer or speak to media relations, contact Leslie Wimes at (561) 200-0580 [Corinna Robinson campaign, press release, 2014.05.07].
I am pleased to see that Robinson takes another shot at the Keystone XL pipeline, noting that we could be investing our resources in much safer and more beneficial ways (when’s the last time you heard of rural broadband exploding or polluting an aquifer?).
But let me play Pat Powers and write the impending snark for him:
- The press release spells Bob Kerrey‘s name wrong.
- The release fails to offer any direct quote from Kerrey telling us why he supports Robinson.
- The release is dated May 7. It didn’t hit my inbox until May 14. And if it hit anyone else’s inbox, it didn’t get their attention enough to print (which might have something to do with not having a direct quote from Kerrey).
- The person in charge of media relations, Leslie Wimes, is in Florida. I like to believe that, with a phone, a computer, and good signal, you can manage just about any modern operation from anywhere (see also the Bosworth petition challenge), but this Florida organizer is a new addition to the campaign, so we can expect a Powers post about outsiders and staff churn in the Robinson office.
- The release criticizes the “current administration” for its “lack of movement with stalled benefits and a backlog of claims.” Wait a minute: is Robinson running against Kristi Noem or Barack Obama? “Administration” means the Executive Branch, not the obstructionist poser in Congress. Pat will like that line, but I don’t. Let’s focus the message!
Update 10:57 MDT: Team Robinson sends an updated press release, correcting the spelling of Kerrey’s name and the location of his governorship (Nebraska, not Kansas). Strangely, the release still carries no direct quote from Senator Kerrey. The release does delete mention of Wimes and replaces the Florida number with the South Dakota campaign number. Memo to staff: if a press release is a rough draft, don’t stamp it “For Immediate Release” and send it to the press.
Heidelbergered:: the quality or state of being faithless or disloyal : treachery; the act of betraying someone or something : the state of not being loyal
First of all, this was completely my fault. I did send an old draft to Cory Allen Heidelberger by mistake. He is a donor to a wonderful South Dakota congressional candidate and, I thought, a friend of hers. So when I opened Heidelberger’s blog to read the below post I was shocked to say the least. The first Heidelberger factual inaccuracy is this: “A press release from Corinna Robinson’s House campaign comes circuitously to my inbox.” Circuitously? It came from me and he knew it. The email simply said “FYI.” Again, my fault, wrong release, but in the world of karma, which would you choose – ask the source about the mistakes since it appears to have an earlier date or hang people out to dry and humiliate them? Yes. Now you know what being Heidelbergered means. People have choices in life. It was my fault. Everyone makes mistakes, but life is about choices. That was Heidelberger’s. Now let’s review the comments just for fun so you can really appreciate my day.
11:59a – I had already sent Heidelberger the right release and apologized and asked for it to be changed. This is our Facebook exchange: