A Democratic friend forwarded an email, sent out by the Marty Jackley campaign for governor, with the letterhead above, calling for financial help from potential donors. Nothing unusual there. But check out the way the pitch begins:
"I don't care what the fake news says.
"I support President Trump. He reformed Washington D.C. and I'll reform South Dakota.
"But it's going to take a bunch of us joining together to push through true conservative reforms in our state."
Here's what my Democratic friend, who has worked on a number of candidate campaigns, had to say about the Jackley email in his email to me: "This email tells me Marty is behind, and he knows it."
Jackley resorts to the "fake news" dog whistle to call in dollars from Trump supporters. But also, I think, to place himself directly in their midst. Then, just in case they missed the meaning of the whistle, which is blown at the expensve of professional news reporters, he follows with a rhetorical hug and kiss on the cheek for the president.
So, is my Democratic friend right? Is there a hint of desperation in this? With a month to go in the primary campaign, does the nature of the email indicate that Jackley is behind and knows it?
Or does Jackley really share -- and mostly manages to hide, at least here in South Dakota -- Donald Trump's disdain for professional news reporters?
Or is it a reasonable approach to fundraising?