It took a moment yesterday as I sat behind a gray Hyundai Sonata at a stop light on Omaha Street for the words on the rear license-plate frame to register:
"Dan Nelson Hyundai."
And as my eye traveled up to the trunk, a fading sticker read: "Dan Nelson Auto Network."
Boy, you don't see that much anymore. You used to see it a lot, before Rapid City native Dan Nelson and his once-thriving network of automobile businesses faltered under an array of alleged misdeeds and eventually a string of criminal charges.
Ultimately, Nelson and a business partner ended up in prison on charges conspiring to lie on financial records.
It was a big story, with tentacles that reached out in all directions. One of them touched Sen. John Thune, a Nelson friend who happened to sit, during the senator's time between the U.S. House and Senate, on a bank board where Nelson did lots of business.
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That was an interesting side story in the bigger Nelson saga. And it got some coverage. It never got the play it would have or could have because Thune didn't face an opponent in his 2010 reelection bid.
The Nelson deal would have made for interesting campaign ads.
But that opportunity passed for Democrats. By the time Thune runs again, presumably, in 2016, Dan Nelson and the friendship will be really old news.
About like the fading sticker on the back of that Sonata.
Contact Kevin Woster at 394-8413 or email@example.com