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Party Surprised At Herseth Sandlin's Decision

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On Monday, Former Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth Sandlin made her decision on whether to run for the democratic nomination for U.S. Senate public.

In a Facebook post, Herseth Sandlin stated,"While I know you share my confidence that working together we could win a statewide race next year, I'm also confident that the decision not to run is the right decision for Max, Zachary, me and our entire family."

The decision comes as a surprise to everyone, including the South Dakota Democratic Party.

Executive Director of the South Dakota Democratic Party Ben Nesselhuf said, "It comes as a surprise to me only because if I had, if I were in her position and had those kinds of numbers in front of me I probably would have been in race two months ago, but I don't have a 4-year-old to worry about."

In April, when KDLT News sat down with her in an exclusive TV interview, Herseth Sandlin was torn about the possibility. She was torn because of her job as lead council for Raven Industries; torn because of her family.

In April Herseth Sandlin said, "I feel like there's more control over the schedule, it's more predictable. I do some travel with Raven Inhdustries but it's not nearly as much travel as I did when I was in Congress."

No doubt, a sad day for her party.

Nesselhuf said, "Certainly, if Stephanie were the nominee, I think it would have been a slam dunk."

Herseth Sandlin is out. But the Democratic Party still has options. Rick Weiland announced last week that he will be seeking the Democratic nomination, with the possibility of more to come. U.S. Attorney Brendan Johnson still hasn't formally announced whether he will be looking to take his father's seat.
"Brendan is focused on his job right now and his job requires him to be A political. Having said that I've known Brendan for a number of years and he's going be successful in whatever he chooses to do," said Nesselhuf.    

With a long way to go until the 2014 election. The party says a lot can happen, but it will have to be without Herseth Sandlin.
In an earlier interview Herseth Sandlin said, "The pull of elective office and government service will likely be there tomorrow and next week and next month and ten years from now and it's a wonderful part of my family and I just appreciate the encouragement."
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