CCK: Hargens to challenge seating of Rep. Roger Hunt

Chad over at the Democratic Clean Cut Kid website did a post on Friday that I finally caught today. Apparently, Democratic Minority Leader Dale Hargens plans on challenging Republican Representative Roger Hunt's being seated as a member of the new legislature:

State Represenatative Dale Hargens (D-22), last night on South Dakota
Focus, was asked how he intends to deal with Representative Roger Hunt (R-10)
who blatantly broke campaign finance laws this past election by hiding the
identity of an individual who spent $750,000 in a failed attempt to influence
the voters of South Dakota.

Hargens' response:

I might as well let the cat out of the bag right now.

My intention is to challenge the fact of whether or not he can be seated or not as a state representative.

We do have somebody who has taken an oath. Not once but twice. Once as an attorney and once as a state representative to uphold the constitution of South Dakota and the laws of the state of South Dakota. And he thumbs his nose at the legislature and the voters of South Dakota. There's something wrong with that.

Read it all here.

Comments

Anonymous said…
More power to Hargens! No one, including senators, are above the law.
Anonymous said…
First, then that means that Hargens thinks Sutton should not be seated either.

Does he have the balls to come out and say that.

Second, there is no doubt that Hunt can be seated, a majority of legislators can seat anyone they want.

If Hargens' argument is that the law was broken then shouldn't Hunt have the opportunity in court to prove his case?

Or, at the least, shouldn't Hunt be able to plead his case to the ethics committee of the House, then be seated or not seated?

When will all the Sutton fans come to the resuce of Roger Hunt saying that since no criminal charges have been oficially filed he should be seated?

Depends on whose ox is being gored doesn't it.

What about subverting the will of the people argument, forwarded of late by the tobacco tax proponents? Why should the legislature be able to not seat someone after being duly elected?

Did Hunt committ these crimes while on legislative time with legislative pages helping him?
Anonymous said…
Anon 7:12,

Roger Hunt is a State Representative not a State Senator.
Anonymous said…
7:32: Didn't AG Larry Long agree that Hunt's actions violated the constitution? And didn't AG Long's office also investigate Sutton without bringing any formal charges?

I've been a loyal GOP my entire life - but power has certainly gone to our heads. Saying "What about Dan Sutton?" doesn't make what Roger Hunt did right. It's time to take our party back - not from the right wing conservatives, but from the law breaking, power abusing members of our party who have been in power too long!
Anonymous said…
Every one is so far off on these matters that it is hard to know where to begin. As far as the Hunt matter, at this point, it is no more than a difference in opinion in interpretation of the law. Regardless of who's right, the matter will be decided by the legal process that is occuring. At that point it may be appropriate to take action against Hunt, not before. Aside from that Hagens is confused about the process to begin with. The only reason that Hunt, or Sutton for that matter wouldn't be seated is if they were not qualified to take office. Since they were both legitimately elected, there is no reason not to seat them.
Anonymous said…
10:16: When you said that the Hunt issue is merely "a difference in opinion in interpretation of the law" you sound just like Bill Clinton. Remember him? The guy that Republicans like Roger Hunt used to bash for weaseling his way out of a libel charge?

Now it seems like Roger Hunt and his apologistas are doing the same darn thing! What's next? A vast left wing conspiracy? The Daschle mafia?

The Republican Party I remember voting for used to be the party of individual responsibility - not one that uses Clintonian wordsmithing to defend Roger Hunt!
Anonymous said…
If I recall correctly, Larry Long is a Republican. He said Repbulican Hunt is wrong, Hunt said he's not wrong.

Dennis Wiese, a Democrat, accused Democrat Sutton of wrong doing. Sutton's lawyer said not so.

I think in both cases politics are not playing into the accusations. We will find out in the future if Hunt is charged and convicted and if Sutton is seated.
Anonymous said…
How does Fat Head Hargens feel about Tom Van Norman's DWI? Didn't that happen during the Session?
Anonymous said…
Long has already said Hunt violated the law but has not said what route he will use to take action against him. Since this involved a rather large election fraud crime this should be addressed. Hunt should be kicked to the curb. He is in the process of being charged and it involves ethics.
If Sutton was in the process of being charged then they should look at him too, but his actions may or may not be criminal (Long has not said) and his are to a far lesser degree than Hunt's attempt to defraud the voters and commit election fraud.

As for Van Norman's DWI, it does not involve the legislature.
Anonymous said…
Let's be fair to all sides. Sutton has not had a hearing and nothing has been proven. There is no reason not to seat him. The same can be said for Hunt.

Should there be a hearing on both Sutton and Hunt?

After 10 months, it does not appear that Sutton will face criminal charges, and if he did, there is zero likelihood he would be convicted with no witnesses and just his word against the accuser (or the accuser's father who wasn't there).

Hunt may face criminal charges, but most likely he will not. It looks like the AG may ask for a declaratory judgment interpreting the law (civil). Hunt and Long will live with the court's determination (they have no choice), and if Long's interpretation is right then Hunt will disclose the donors. A legitimate dispute over statutory interpretation should not deprive Hunt of his seat. However, if the court determines that his interpretation is frivolous and untenable, the House should have a hearing at that point to determine what to do about election fraud(and the State Bar may as well).
Anonymous said…
illegal campaign contributions never killed anyone.

DWI place innocent men, women and children at risk of serious injury and death.

For all of you wanting to take power or whatever from the right wing you ought to first focus on taking back arrogance from legislators who drink and drive.

Get and clue and prioritize your values. I guess some people think campaign contributions mean more than a DWI.

Also, the campaign contributions did not involve the legisalture either.
Anonymous said…
Just b/c Larry Long says something does not mean that it has the full force and effect of law.

He was wrong about the redistricting lawsuit and other issues. His legal opinion will not always win the day in court.
Anonymous said…
9:18 Regarding Sutton, I hope that we get to hear the taped message that was supposedly left on Dennis Wiese's cell phone. Supposed to be a smoking gun. If true then it would be more than one's word against another's.
Anonymous said…
When is breaking the law not breaking the law in South Dakota?

When a Powerful Republican like Roger Hunt does it.

It is truly sad what the GOP extremists have done to our once great party.
Anonymous said…
By GOP extremists, I assume you mean the ultra-liberal whacko wing of the Republican Party. You're right. They are way out there.
Anonymous said…
4:10am: Uhmmm no. I meant the Roger Hunt, Steve Sibson and Leslee Unruh extremist wing of the Republican Party. The wing whose abortion measure was overwhelmingly rejected by the moderate voters (you would call us whacky liberals, I'm sure) in South Dakota.

I'm sure you were trying to be funny, but I understand. Most of the things I have said at 4 in the morning seemed funny at the time too.
Anonymous said…
what DWI? when was van norman stopped for DWI?

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