In today’s column, Bob Novak reports, “Like Harry Truman, John Thune has found it hard to find a friend in Washington.” Thune, of course, came to Washington in January, fresh off his defeat of Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle (D.-S.D.), and became an instant celebrity.
Today, Thune finds himself at odds with the Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC) over the fate of Ellsworth Air Force Base in his home state. Thune has become a maverick of sorts, Novak reports, first opposing John Bolton for the UN and then voting against CAFTA.
HE’s John Gizzi reported this on Thune in June:
Despite general, widespread anger on the right over the senator’s opposition to the stalwart Bolton, Thune spokesman [Kyle] Downey claimed to me that “the senator is actually getting a great deal of support from conservatives who sympathize with his issue.” Downey cited a recent pro-Thune article in National Review and favorable commentary from Rush Limbaugh and Brit Hume of Fox News. Of the disappointment on the right, Downey, incredibly, said, “We just don’t see it.”
On the surface, it appeared at the time that Downey was putting a positive spin on things. But if Novak’s assessment is true—“Now he is becoming a ‘Son of the Wild Jackass’ familiar to the Great Plains”—then Thune really does reason to be concerned.