Showing posts from April 2, 2006

Cecelia Fire Thunder might want to hold off on pouring that concrete.

INTERESTING article in today's Rapid City Journal from Patrick Lee, retired chief judge of the Oglala Sioux Tribe. In today's forum, he writes how Cecelia Fire Thunder who is pushing to bring Planned Parenthood to Pine Ridge might be in violation of tribal law from doing so:
I wonder if the consulting attorneys took time to research tribal law on the subject. The tribe's Juvenile Code describes unborn children as "a child conceived, but not born, is to be deemed an existing person so far as may be necessary for its interests and welfare to be protected in the event of its subsequent birth" (Chapter 5, Juvenile Code, Section 1.05). That definition and its implications could present a problem to supporters of the proposed abortion clinic.

But that's not all.

While the tribe is immune from the application of state law directly, there is a federal law which makes state criminal prohibitions applicable to Indian reservations. The federal Assimilative Crimes Act incor…

CR Convention. I sucked, but it seemed like it was a pretty good group.

I was asked to sub for State Auditor Rich Sattgast at the CR convention today, and it was pretty interesting. Rich was delayed from a conference and laid over two days on his way back, so I took pity on him.

I was instantly regretting not having done more prep, as I walked in and saw the speaker before me, Dusty Johnson had a powerpoint presentation on this year's political races being projected.

Ugh. I'm following a powerpoint presentation? That and Dusty noting how aged he is at 29. (I razzed him a little for that one) When you're facing 40 this year, you don't want to hear how old a 29 year old is. 29... back when I had 2 kids. Four more kids and ten years later, I'm about ready for the iceflow.

And lets face it, my talk was pretty mediocre. I'm wishing I had done more prep. I was the guy with a few scribbled notes going "I'm subbing for Rich Sattgast. Just consider me a shorter and fatter version of him."

What I did find interesting was that th…

Which office is Burg running for and where does he live?

I think many people have noticed that former PUC Commissioner Jim Burg is running for Mayor of Wessington Springs. After getting beaten by Dusty Johnson in his last race, It seems that Jim wants to stay involved. But recently, it looks like he's seeking a lot of involvement.

Yesterday, in addition to being in the last days of his race for mayor of Wessington Springs, I'm told that Jim submitted petitions to also run for a position on the Heartland Consumers Power District.

The person who pointed this out to me noted that supposedly Jim must live in town to be mayor (which is logical) but apparently there is also a requirement to live outside of Wessington Springs to be on the Heartland board.
But in a wilder twist than that, I'm told Jim's petitions which had appeared on the Secretary of State's candidate website were challenged. This brought out the fact that he had fewer legitimate signatures than required, getting him booted from the Heartland CPD position on t…

Bob gets his day in court after saying that he won't "sit at the back of the bus"

I guarantee you that I don't support Bob's petition to Legalize Medical Marijuana. But I do support his right to collect petition signatures in the face of government entities trying to place restrictions on petitions.

Why? Because the next petition they try to restrict might be one I do support.

From today's Rapid City Journal:
Political activist and frequent petitioner Bob Newland of Hermosa challenged a civic center policy Friday during a hearing before 7th Circuit Magistrate Judge William Severns. Newland was charged in February with failure to vacate, a class 1 misdemeanor, for refusing to leave Rushmore Plaza Civic Center. He has moved to dismiss the charge.

Newland, who has been campaigning for the legalization of medical marijuana for several years, had been collecting petition signatures during the Black Hills Stock Show.

He said he had collected signatures outside the civic center during the first five days of the stock show before moving inside on the sixth day …

Bruce Whalen official photo

GOP Congressional Candidate Bruce Whalen has a new "official" photo which I'll add to the rotating banner as soon as I get back to Pierre this weekend. But until then, here it is.

SDSU student prostitution. This time the Argus investigates.

Remember yesterday when I was railing on about SDSU Political Science Professor Gary Aguiar prostituting his students into being his campaign operatives under the auspices of it being a class assignment? This story is quickly taking off, and is a top story at the Argus Leader today.

From this morning's Argus Leader:
Students say Gary Aguiar, a political science professor, circulated a petition in class to help put him on the ballot, called for campaign volunteers and encouraged another class to create a campaign strategy for him as an assignment.

"I think it was an abuse of power, to be completely honest," said Brian Kimmes, a student in Aguiar's Political Parties and Organizations class last fall.

Kimmes said he and other students were immediately uncomfortable with Aguiar's call for students to strategize his campaign for the Tuesday election. He said students could and did work on other candidates' plans. But, he noted, none of those candidates were teaching t…

Call for campaign websites

If you or your candidate has a website for a South Dakota political campaign email it to me. I'm going to start a listing of them around the bottom of the right hand column, since we're out of session and I need filler. It should also be a handy reference in case you're looking for information.

And yes Bob and Bonnie, I'll put the ballot issues there as well, pro and con, regardless of my opinion of them.

SDSU College Instructor uses college girls for his own purposes. And the boys too.

That headline seems a little lurid, but what it should do is make you mad. Because I read this in last night's Brookings Register and it more than got my goat. Brookings is engaged in a mildly spirited mayoral race Between current Mayor Scott Munsterman, Businessman Al Gregg, and SDSU professor Gary Aguiar.

Last night's paper reported that Aguiar teaches a class for SDSU called "Political Parties and Campaigns." And he's using his class for more than a teaching tool. It looks like he considers the students paying for an education as his personal campaign staff.

According to the Brookings Register, Professor Aguiar brought his mayoral nominating petitions into class for his students to sign. And it gets worse. From the Brookings Register:
Last fall as part of his class, he assigned class members to come up with a local candidate's campaign plan. During a forum for mayoral candidates held at the University Student Union, he freely admitted that he had students de…

Wiese and Billion. Going negative is inevitable

The Argus Leader brings up a point this morning about the Race for Governor and the necessary approach that the Demcoratic candidates will take:
...... a campaign that criticizes both Rounds and the Republican majority in the Legislature seems probable.

Four years ago, Rounds was a little-known and underfunded candidate who won his party's nomination in part because his better-recognized opponents were so negative toward each other in campaign statements and advertisements.

That's not likely to happen in the Wiese-Billion primary, both men say.

"That's not the kind of campaign I will run, nor do I think Dennis Wiese will run that kind of campaign," Billion said. "We need to be appealing to our base right now." The Democrats claim they're going to play nice and not tear each other apart this primary, but I'm thinking that's inevitable. Both are driven to win. If they don't quickly show themselves as the better candidate, a loss in in the futu…

If you can't take the heat.... Then RUN AWAY... Run away
2-star Jailer-in-chief Bill Stegemier Deletes his blog.

I got back to Brookings a few minutes ago after a trip to Sioux Falls for work, with another work related stop in town after that.

And the first thing I saw in my e-mail box was a note from a reader pointing out that Bill Stegmeier deleted his entire blog with a love note to myself and Progressive on the Prairie which reads:

Hello South Dakota War College and Progressive on the Prairie!I must say that I'm a bit shocked. Why would anyone delete their personal thoughts and feelings as they've posted on the internet?

I mean, so what if South Dakota's two-star jailer in chief Bill Stegemeier thinks the IRS is illegal? So what if he wrote that governments have no rights to require marriage licenses? So what if he pens missives that the US Government blew up the twin towers and the Arab terrorist thing is just a ruse? He certainly felt strongly about his opinions as he posted on many of those topics.

Well, ok. It might be because the average South Dakotan would consider them as comp…

Dave Kranz picks up on some of the chatter

Dave Kranz writes in today's Argus Leader about controversy in the Judicial Accountability movement:
It might seem like the judicial accountability group is having identity problems, but that's not the case, says Bill Stegmeier, the South Dakota coordinator.

Concerned about the way some people are portraying the Accountability amendment that will be on the Nov. 6 ballot, Stegmeier of Tea wrote a letter to Ron Branson of California, founder of the Jail4Judges organization that has an interest in the proposed amendment, and told him they were not needed here.

"We have the opposition misleading the people, making them think this is a bunch of agitators from California coming here, and that is not the case," Stegmeier said Wednesday.

"Our new letterhead now has the names of 80 South Dakotans who are volunteering and donating money, and there are no Californians in our group," he said.

To separate the local effort, Stegmeier says they now will be known as a group sup…

Governor's Primary opponent in hot water.

In the Pierre Capitol Journal last Friday, an article appeared in the paper about how two Pierre men were indicted by a federal grand jury on a 3 count indictment. It happens. But there's a bit of a political angle to it as well.

As reported in KGFX my daily news, here's a few more details:
Two Pierre men and a man from Mitchell appeared in federal court yesterday to answer to charges of under-reporting their income to the I.R.S. and other related charges. 44-year-old Kent Bowers and 45-year-old Kurt Bowers, both of Pierre and 50-year-old Kerwin Miller appeared in court in Pierre yesterday and pled not guilty to the charges against them. Kent Bowers was indicted for three-counts of Conspiracy and False Declaration.What does this have to do with the Governor's Primary opponent?

Nothing now. But back then, he wasn't Governor but a primary candidate for a different office. In 1990 Mike Rounds was making his first run at public office in the State Senate and had announced he …

Another State's Attorney jumps in the judicial races

I had recently mentioned that my buddly Lance Russell is running for judge from down in his area. From the Lawrence County Journal, here's news of another States attorney running for another judicial seat:
John H. Fitzgerald age 50 of St. Onge, South Dakota, announced today that he is a candidate for the Fourth Circuit Court Judge Position “A”, held by Jerome Eckrich. Fitzgerald is married and the father of three grown children and also a grandfather.

Fitzgerald is a 1977 graduate of Black Hills State College and a 1979 graduate of the University of South Dakota Law School. He was admitted to the South Dakota State Bar Association in January 1980, and has been a lawyer for 26 years. He has served as the State’s Attorney in both Butte and Lawrence County.Read it all here.

Another Republican jumps in the District 35 House Race

From today's Rapid City Journal:
RAPID CITY - Dale Gunderson, a retired Rapid City physician, announced that he is a candidate in District 35 for the Republican nomination to the state House of Representatives. “As I walk our neighborhoods during the campaign, I am looking forward to listening to the concerns of the people in our district,” he said.

Gunderson began his practice in Rapid City in 1993, treating health problems of the ear, nose and throat. He retired in 2004 but has continued practicing as a volunteer physician at Rapid City Community Health Clinics and Children’s Care Rehab and Development Center, where he is participating in the development of a clinic focused on the treatment of children’s feeding disorders.

“It is time to elect new leaders to the Legislature with fresh ideas,” Gunderson said. “I will be an advocate for public-health issues and for quality and available health care. Because I am a physician who was in private practice and continue to be a physi…

More Napoli bashing

What is it lately? It's like there's a rash of Napoli bashing going on via eBay.

Bob Newland is getting in on the act with an item of his design on eBay at

I don't think Bill has much to worry about. Because while everyone is taking little pokes at him, his name is being spelled correctly in every news article. And we have yet to hear from his opponent. (I meant the one he's running against, not the one who's funding her campaign)

In DIstrict 8, a Republican candidate named Sue

From KJAM news:
Another Republican candidate has entered the race for one of the seats open in the State House for District 8. Sue Scofield of Wentworth filed her nominating petition with the Secretary of State’s office Tuesday. Scofield grew up in South Dakota and has been a resident of Lake County and District 8 since 1998. She is a former executive of Chicago Title with nearly twenty years experience in the title business.Read it all here

Noon update - Bruce Whalen is IN

So far the only new set of petitions filed today is Bruce Whalen for running against Stephanie Herseth.

I had an e-mail pointing that out, and thank you. I had noticed that in the media this AM, but I didn't have a chance to post on it yet. I should also have more of an official picture of Bruce for the top of my website banner.

Oh - an unpublicized tip for you on Bruce - I see he's going to have a website at I'll keep an eye out and let you know when it's up and live.

That's a pretty good one.

I'm still giggling.

Two weeks ago I did a post on Frank Alvine who is running for District 10 State Senate against Senator Gene Abdallah in the Primary. And I brought up the fact that the URL (Internet Address) that was being advertised didn't appear to be registered at all.

I made the smart alecky comment that "If I had decided to purchase the website being advertised, all I would need is my credit card, and I'm good to go. THE SITE WOULD BE MINE. That would really stink if it was your opponent purchasing it."

I saw that Alvine's announcement was in the paper in Harrisburg this week, so I went and checked out the old URL just to look at his website.

So, I enter, and what did I see?

That's right, someone registered the URL and pointed it here to the South Dakota War College. Which gave me one of the best laughs I've had in a while. Whoever did it, has a pretty good sense of humor. I tried looking it up, and it isn't publicly ava…

RCJ Runs down the Western SD Contests

Big article this morning on the races. A snippet from the Rapid City Journal:
State Sen. Stan Adelstein, an outspoken opponent of HB1215, will face state Republican Party vice-chairwoman Ellie Schwiesow, who is equally outspoken in her support of the ban. Adelstein, a longtime Rapid City businessman, will have the money to run a sophisticated campaign, but he narrowly beat Schwiesow in 2004. And this year, the Adelstein-Schwiesow race could attract national attention.

The winner of that District 32 primary will face Democrat Tom Katus and Constitutional Party candidate Daniel Lautenschlager in November.

The District 32 House race has no primaries, but it has a full slate of candidates. Republican Rep. Alan Hanks and Republican Brian Dreyer will face Democrats Suzan Nolan and Pamela Hemmingsen.

The other local primary race that could be affected by HB1215 is in District 35, which includes parts of Rapid City and Rapid Valley.

Republican Rep. Alice McCoy, who can’t run again for the House be…

Mulletography in the U.S. Congress?

If you didn't notice, I changed up the pictures up top to try to feature a few more people I like and support. As part of it, I also changed my Herseth picture to one a little more recent. And what's the first e-mail I get on the topic?
Is that really Herseth scrolling on top of your webpage with the mullet?Ooooo.. That's harsh. (And it comes from a female reader as well). I don't know if I'd term it a mullet myself. It must be a trick of the light..

Not to say I told you so..... But I told you so.

What was it, 6, 8 months or more ago that the South Dakota Mainstream Coalition formed? Just to point it out, the South Dakota State Senators involved with it at the inception were:
Ed Olson
Tom Dempster
Dave Knudson
Stan Adelstein
Royal "Mac" McCracken
J.P. Duniphan
Duane SuttonYes, we all know it was booed by some Republicans. The big story was how the Mainstream Coalition was overwhelmingly praised by the Democrats. Judy Olson and others could not gush over them more if they tried.

What were some of the comments thrown out by South Dakota Democratic Chairman Judy Olson - "The defection of several Republican state legislators from the hardcore stance of their party towards a more moderate agenda is another signal of progress. The Democratic Party has long held that personal freedom and personal choice are tenants of our platform. To see a cadre of Republican legislators embrace that vision makes me hopeful for the future."

After all of this fanfare from the Democrats for …

As it stands tonight

As of 8:30 tonight - here's what's been turned in and recorded by the Secretary of State:


LibertarianGerber, Tom Sturgis

RepublicanRounds, Mike Pierre

DemocraticBillion, Jack Sioux Falls

Wiese, Dennis J.FlandreauLegislature1HouseDemocraticHalverson, Clayton Veblen

Sigdestad, David Pierpont

RepublicanIverson, Rory Sisseton

SenateDemocraticHanson, Gary D.Sisseton

RepublicanJohnson, Wade A.Sisseton
2HouseDemocraticDennert, H. Paul Columbia

Elliott, Burt Aberdeen<