Yesterday, Argus Leader political columnist Dave Kranz reported that Dusty Johnson and Joel Dykstra are being considered as Republican challengers to face either Stephanie Herseth or Tim Johnson:
Republicans have been in somewhat of a flux since the hospitalization of Sen. Tim Johnson as they try to get movement from possible candidates for those top 2008 races.
There are now at least two Republicans who have gotten to the point where they are weighing their sensitivity to Johnson's illness, but they also recognize they must start exploratory ventures.
Dusty Johnson, first-term Public Utilities Commissioner, and state Rep. Joel Dykstra, R-Canton, are at that point of soul-searching their political futures.
For Johnson, it is a possible U.S. House race. Dykstra contemplates the House and the U.S. Senate.
"It is something I am considering. Any time you have a realistic opportunity to make South Dakota better, you have to take a look," Dusty Johnson says. "The thing for me: Can you be a good congressman and a good father?"
"I have tremendous respect for Rep. Herseth Sandlin, but this is not about her. It is tough to sit on the sidelines as we deal with security and economic issues. It would be an opportunity for me to make a difference," Johnson said.
Rep. Joel Dykstra is opening the door to a possible U.S. Senate campaign regardless of what Johnson decides to do.
It would be an interesting lineup for Republicans, who might have a solid congressional field going into the next election cycle. Also, as SDWC noted, "When faced with a choice of this nature, it means that the Congresswoman is not going to get the luxury of ducking debates for a third election in a row." Speaking of SDWC and the election, head over to his blog and weigh in on who you'd like to see run in 2008.