Senator to Forward South Dakota: Cowards!

Senator Lee Schoenbeck is putting his foot down with Forward South Dakota, the group running the ads against Chris Nelson for asking for an AG's opinion (who asked for a Supreme Court Ruling) on whether or not the Video Lottery could be placed on the ballot:
A state lawmaker from Watertown says it is wrong that television ads attacking Secretary of State Chris Nelson for refusing to put a video lottery repeal measure on the fall ballot don’t list the sponsor. “These cowards aren’t putting their name on it. They’re attacking Chris Nelson for doing his job, and they don’t say who it is,” Republican state Sen. Lee Schoenbeck said.

The ad — being aired by Forward South Dakota, the group promoting the video-lottery repeal — shows hands pulling the strings of a puppet that resembles Nelson. The ads ask: “Who’s pulling the secretary’s strings? Is this another favor to protect special interests, or has our state video-lottery addiction become so strong that our current administration will steal our right to vote?”

“For people watching, you can’t tell who it is that’s making the attack, and you can’t tell who it is that’s paying for the attack. And I think that’s just wrong,” Schoenbeck said.

“That happens to be a loophole in our campaign laws that, hopefully, the next legislative session is going to address when they do campaign finance reform.”

Forward South Dakota has asked the state Supreme Court to order Nelson to put the measure on the November ballot.

“No, we’re not bashful to say that Forward South Dakota is behind these ads,” Daniel K. Brendtro, a Sioux Falls lawyer who is treasurer of Forward South Dakota, said. “We looked at the campaign rules, and we’re not on the ballot yet, (so) we’re not a ballot-question committee. We’re just sort of in this gray area.”

Brendtro said his group has added a disclaimer to the ad when stations have requested one.

Schoenbeck said the group is spending good money on ads when the matter is in the state Supreme Court’s hands, not Nelson’s.

“They have a First Amendment right to say what they’re saying about it, but they don’t have a First Amendment right to have a white hood over their face,” he said. “They ought to have to say who they are — whoever’s making the attacks and who’s paying for it — because that’s a pretty expensive campaign.”
Read it all here, and See the ad here at Mt. Blogmore.

Actually, Lee brings up a good point. Who is behind Forward South Dakota? If they're going to ask who is pulling Chris Nelson's strings, I'd chime in and ask the question in reply, "who is pulling Forward South Dakota's strings?"

I know there will be more to come on that topic.


Anonymous said…
Daniel Brendtro is a weasely, young (inexperienced) wannabe, hot shot lawyer who is trying to make a name for himself. He's an idiot!
Anonymous said…
Did somebody tell me the tribes are paying his bill on this one?

Anon 2:05 : your assessment is accurate. I liked the part where he said "LLong is wrong". What a punk.
lexrex said…
what's lee's "white hood" comment about? is he suggesting what i think he's suggesting?
Anonymous said…
Long and Nelson denying the voters their right is politicly problematic. That's why Schoenbeck is trying to change the subject. That group has all the right in the world to question their motives. The name calling isn't going to win this debate.
Anonymous said…
Who is hiding behind the white hood? I know first hand it is not the tribes.

Problem is we will never know anything for certain becasue even if VLT makes the ballot no disclosure will be required for funds spent now.

Let the people decide now or the state will pay dearly in 2008 when the electorate will ask why they were denied the opportunity to vote in 2006.

Maybe a back door strategy for VLT opposition?
Anonymous said…
It is absolutely the Indian Gaming Casinos behind this. They've tried it before and their trying it again. It is they who will benifit the most from a repeal of video the expense of the South Dakota taxpayers.

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