South Dakota’s only hope, and other gubernatorial jokes

Thursday night at the South Dakota Conference on Tourism banquet, both Gov. Dennis Daugaard and Lt. Gov. Matt Michels broke out some comedy routines to entertain the crowd. Here’s some samplings:

Michels, on New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s “Bridgegate" scandal, involving alleged punitive closing of access lanes to a bridge by Christie’s aides:

I said, “You know, that would never happen in South Dakota.”

(Quoting someone else) “Really?”

I said, “No, we would drive around the barricades.” 

And then I said, “We wouldn’t send any emails — that could be found.”

Daugaard, talking about the Macy’s parade/Joan Jett controversy:

To avoid further controversy, there’s only really one answer, one performer who can keep both the cattlemen and the music fans happy, and that performer is… Meat Loaf. He’s got hit records, he’s a carnivore, and he’s really, really available.

Michels, on Daugaard’s charity skydive last year:

The governor is always sort of concerned that I’m trying to move up to the number one spot. Okay, I did buy a freezer full of those Dairy Queen Blizzards… just to ensure he would actually jump out of that airplane.

Michels, on being the lieutenant governor:

I wonder, if the governor was indisposed for some reason, what kind of person would we need to have in that big chair leading us?

(Michels flashed a photo of South Dakota’s Teddy Roosevelt mascot character on the screen)

I think we’d need somebody like this, rough and tough, a leader, brimming with vim and vigor, don’t you think? Eyes gleaming with incredible intelligence behind these spectacles, delivering fiery speeches, framed with the manliest of mustaches.

Remind you of anybody?

I’m just saying.

Daugaard, discussing the new trend of “weight-loss vacations”:

You maybe have heard, on the global scale that this new trend, weight-loss vacations. Have you heard this? … These trips combine exercise in scenic locations with healthy eating to help visitors shed pounds.

I understand you can do at least one of those vacations right here in South Dakota.

The Wind Cave Weight Loss Weekend seals visitors underground for several days. They wander in the dark without food or water, until they reach their weight loss goals, or require medical emergency attention.

It’s traditional for the governor to tell a few jokes for the tourism banquet. My favorite of the several I’ve attended was Mike Rounds’ 2010 list of the “Top 10 Changes I’ll Face As A Former Governor.”