Showing posts from May 21, 2006

COMPLETELY sexist, but I was oddly compelled to look

While I was looking for a Nancy Pelosi picture to goof on for the prior post (use your imagination), I stumbled across a website I hadn't noticed before: GOP Babe of the week on the website.

Not affiliated with the New Jersey Republican Party, it is nonetheless self-described as "putting the party back in the Grand Old Party."

It's a bunch of admittedly chauvanistic amusement, but it's friday. What do you expect?

SDGOP goes after Herseth as one of Pelosi's puppies

The South Dakota Republican Party issued a press release today going after Stephanie Herseth for voting no to opening 2,000 acres of the Artic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas exploration. From the release:
For Immediate Release: Contact: Max Wetz
Friday, May 26, 2006 (605) 224-7347

Herseth stands with Pelosi, Dems on energy bill
Congresswoman votes against ending dependence on foreign oil

PIERRE – When she had the chance to help reduce gas prices and create new jobs, Rep. Stephanie Herseth didn’t stand up for South Dakota consumers but instead followed Nancy Pelosi’s direction in voting “NO” on HR 5429 - the American-Made Energy and Good Jobs Act.

The bill would open 2,000 acres of the Artic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas exploration. The estimated 1 million barrels of oil that could be produced per day at peak production is nearly equal to what the U.S. imports from Saudi Arabia every day.

“The oil we could produce in our own country would be a valuable complement to the et…

Convicted felon running for Mayor of Vermillion

His campaign resume must note that he's a creative thinker in solving financial problems and values personal freedom. Because as the Vermillion Plain Talk is reporting, James Johnson of Vermillion, former Law School official and convicted felon, is running for mayor.
Officials in Pierre have assured the staff at city hall here that James A. Johnson is permitted to be a candidate in the upcoming June 6 Vermillion mayor's race, despite a string of legal problems that began in 1991 and didn't end until 2003.

The Vermillion man's criminal history includes two simultaneous felony convictions and a stint in the South Dakota penitentiary. He was also taken into custody twice on parole violations, each which returned him to a jail cell.

Those parole violations are related to a string of driving while intoxicated and other traffic violations.

"We've consulted with the secretary of state's office and the (South Dakota) Municipal League, just to make sure that every…

Candidate website - Dinah Paris

District 31 Democrat Dinah Paris has a website out on the Internet advertising her candidacy. It's not terribly complex, but despite the lack of fancy multimedia, I found it relatively attractive and easy to navigate.

Asthetics aside, her Issues She Cares About Page nearly gave me nightmares as a Republican. It was straight out of the "how to paint a Democrat as a tax and spend social libertarian" manual. Yes, as a conservative Republican, I'm sure I would disagree with her on many issues. But good gosh, I'm not be sure how spending without any consideration of restraint is going to play out in the hills. But we're going to find out.

Don't get me wrong. Giving teachers a 15% increase is a direct benefit to me, having a spouse in education. But I see nothing in her platform on how to pay for it out of already strapped state and educational budgets. (an increase in taxes, perhaps?)

Anyway, design gets a B+. Ideology gets a D-.

That's what I said. RCJ on Napoli/McCoy race

The Rapid City Journal must have read my blog tonight:
Critics of mud-slinging politics and drawn-out political campaigns don’t have much to complain about in Rep. Alice McCoy’s bid to unseat the ever-controversial state Sen. Bill Napoli in the District 35 Republican primary. With less than two weeks to go before the June 6 election, McCoy hasn’t yet distributed her new batch of campaign yard signs.

“They were supposed to be coming,” she said Thursday. “But they aren’t here yet.”Read it all here. I'm thinking that someone needs to get the butter and jam out. Because if she still doesn't have her yard signs yet, Alice McCoy is toast.

Upcoming stuff. And why little Patrick can't spell.

If you notice the comments on the post immediately below this, where I pointed out a tiny zinger at the Dems, someone noted my spelling error in the title. Yes, I admit it tends to throw a wet blanket on a zinger when you screw up a word in the title post.

I'm a fairly good speller, but a terrible, completely self-taught typist.

Anyway, aside from a little DaVinci-code-self-flagellation, I got some great news today - I have an election evening gig that I'm pretty excited about, but I'll have to share it a little later.

What else is generally going on in politics around South Dakota?

Heard State Senatorial Challenger Jim Holbeck was on KWAT's "What's Up" program today, and had a really muddled answer when asked by the host "Why are you running?" Probably not a positive.

One of the first things I tell candidates (and I've blogged about before) - have a clear and concise response for that question. It arguably cost Ted Kennedy a presidential run whe…

Does Cecelia Fire Thunder hate Reporters AND Kids? Where's the Democratic Indignation now?

Kevin Woster over at Mt. Blogmore has made a couple posts in the last few days with regards to the unresponsiveness of Oglala Sioux Tribe President (And SDDP board member) Cecelia Fire Thunder:

From the first post:
Newshound or not, I had to admit that I didn’t have a clue. I tried to find out a few weeks back, but Fire Thunder ignored a string of my telephone calls seeking her response to comments by a former tribal judge that such a clinic would violate tribal code.I called every day for a week, both at her office and on her cell phone - which soon became useless because the mail box was full. Fire Thunder was in the office when I called at least a couple of times. And I left her messages on her voicemail before it filled up. She never called me back.I left messages for her assistant as well. She never called me back, either.From the second post:
The president of the Oglala Tribe stood up an assembly of 8th-graders Wednesday at North Middle School. She just didn’t show up for a schedul…

He says he didn't do anything wrong. And that's the attitude that's killing kids left and right.

KSFY is reporting on what is most certainly the most obtuse person in South Dakota. Or at the very least David Rozeboom should be one of the most reviled from his statements made outside of court:
Tuesday, the owner of a Hudson area home told a judge he's not guilty of hosting a beer party for minors earlier this month. But moments later the man stepped out of the courtroom and told KSFY he knew minors were drinking at his house, but he doesn't think he did anything wrong. The dashboard camera shows what a Lincoln County Sheriff's deputy saw when she rolled up on an alleged underage beer party on May 12th. Officials say nearly 100 young people were at the gathering. The owner of the house, 21 year-old David Rozeboom, agrees with the number, but says it wasn't a party. "I didn't. .. It wasn't really a party. It was a dance." Rozeboom was in court today, facing one charge of maintaining a place used for violation of beverage laws. He points out there we…

What does she mail with her Christmas Cards? A reindeer head?

Leave it to the abortion issue to bring the kooks out of the woodwork. The Black Hills Pioneer reports on how a New York woman is sending coathangers to South Dakota legislators in protest of the South Dakota vote on HB1215:
New York woman makes statement to South Dakota lawmakers
By Heather Ziegenbein, Black Hills Pioneer

Any legislator or senator in the state of South Dakota that voted for banning all abortions received a coat hanger and letter in the mail last Tuesday.

District 31 Representatives Chuck Turbiville, R-Deadwood, Tom Hills, R-Spearfish, and Sen. Jerry Apa, R-Lead, all voted in favor of the ban and received letters. All are equally irritated with the audacity of this individual who mailed the hangers and letter but respect her Constitutional right to express her differing opinion.

Monica Beck of New York City sent the letter basically stating that the South Dakota Legislature made the decision that they would rather have women dying while trying to perform illegal abortions …

Why can't we all just get along? Because it's an election, dammit. *UPDATED*

Kevin Woster writes in the Rapid City Journal that The District 33 Senate Primary is getting contentious. As if they should somehow be special.
“Why do we have to run negative campaigns?” Duniphan said Wednesday. “When Dennis and I met before the campaign, he said he was going to run a positive campaign. And it’s apparent that isn’t the case.”

Duniphan said Schmidt’s campaign advertisements are distorting her record on key issues including taxes, abortion, gay marriage and gun rights. Schmidt said he’s merely pointing out differences between himself and Duniphan, based on her 12-year voting record in the state Legislature and data taken from a state Web site.


Schmidt also said, in an advertisement appearing this week, that Duniphan’s involvement in the South Dakota Mainstream Coalition — an organization formed last year to promote what organizers call centrist political ideals — reflects her true political leanings.

Schmidt’s advertisement said the coalition members believe in “gay m…

And the school districts are suing the state because......?

From this morning's Rapid City Journal:
South Dakota students posted some of the nation’s highest scores on standardized science tests given last year to fourth- and eighth-graders in the state’s public schools. “We are very pleased to know that when we’re compared to other states across the country, we still stack up pretty good,” state Education Secretary Rick Melmer said.

The 2005 science scores are from the National Assessment of Educational Progress, which is considered the best measure of how students perform over time and how states compare with each other.

South Dakota’s students also had some of the nation’s highest scores in math and reading in NAEP results released in October. The test results released Wednesday focus only on science.

Melmer noted that only one state had a significantly higher score than South Dakota among eighth-graders and that South Dakota’s fourth-graders also posted a good score.Read all of this AP article here. So, we're posting some of the hi…

Former and currrent legislators on the HB1215 Referral

From this morning's Dave Kranz Column in the Sioux Falls Argus Leader:
Personnel close to the powerbrokers of the petition effort say they will have no problem getting the ban on the ballot."Yes, I have a good feeling that we will have enough from West River," said state Sen. Stan Adelstein, R-Rapid City, an abortion rights supporter and opponent of the bill.

Former District 9 state Rep. Rich Engels, D-Hartford, is even more specific about progress by opponent efforts on this side of the Missouri River.

"I know people who are circulating them, and they are confident they are well over the number needed to get on the ballot," Engels said.

Word that the deadline for filing the petition could be contested by ban supporters has "fired up" opponents of the ban, said former Republican state Rep. Jan Nicolay, a leader of the Healthy Families group organizing the drive.

Petition carriers say they expect their documents to be filed next week.Read it all here.

Could this ever happen in SD?

Could this ever happen in South Dakota? From
School District to Monitor Student Blogs
Tue May 23, 9:42 AM ET

High school students are going to be held accountable for what they post on blogs and on social-networking Web sites such as board of Community High School District 128 voted unanimously on Monday to require that all students participating in extracurricular activities sign a pledge agreeing that evidence of "illegal or inappropriate" behavior posted on the Internet could be grounds for disciplinary action.The rule will take effect at the start of the next school year, officials said.District officials won't regularly search students' sites, but will monitor them if they get a worrisome tip from another student, a parent or a community member.Mary Greenberg of Lake Bluff, who has a son at Libertyville High School, argued the district is overstepping its bounds."I don't think they need to police what students are doing online,…

Is bad better than worse?

I mentioned a few months back that I got my voter registration moved over to Brookings. It was a tough one for me, as I've voted here for most of my life. One of those habitual things, but I'm a homeowner over there, and I want to be politically active in my new town.

And then there are moments when I'm glad I'm no longer a Pierre voter. Such as tonight, when I found out who our choices are in the race for city commission.

Choice #1 is the incumbent, Larry Weiss. I think I'd already expressed my disdain for Larry in a post many months ago. Suffice it to say, if he could ramble on any more at commission meetings, there would be people bidding on the rights to construct a wind tower.

I didn't think there was anyone in town who could be so bad as to make him the preferential choice. But I was mistaken. I found out tonight that his opponent is none other than Robert Hockett.

I blogged on Bob as well in January as how he's never met a political race he didn't …

Dems for Republicans

Here's a good one that a reader just sent to me:
On South Main Street in Aberdeen there is one red sign visible in support of SD Republican Senator Duane Sutton. You would never guess whose yard it is in. That of Democrat officer, blogger, and candidate David Newquist. Dave, care to comment? (Thinking about changing teams?) ;)

Do as I say, not as I do.

The New York Times is writing today that the ACLU is considering a policy to stifle dissent on it's board:
The American Civil Liberties Union is weighing new standards that would discourage its board members from publicly criticizing the organization's policies and internal administration."Where an individual director disagrees with a board position on matters of civil liberties policy, the director should refrain from publicly highlighting the fact of such disagreement," the committee that compiled the standards wrote in its proposals. "Directors should remember that there is always a material prospect that public airing of the disagreement will affect the A.C.L.U. adversely in terms of public support and fund-raising," the proposals state.Do as I say, not as I do. Somehow, I think this story is going to hurt their fundraising more than a contrary word.

I took a shot at sheriff.. and got fired 'cause I was deputy

Not me personally, but former Beadle County Deputy Gayle Kludt found herself job hunting after filing petitions to run for the Sheriff has a big story in the Argus Leader about the situation:
The Beadle County deputy was fired a day after announcing she would be challenging the sheriff, her boss, in the fall election.

"I'm not going to be intimidated into not running," said Kludt, who's not the first deputy to campaign against a sitting sheriff.

While sheriff's deputies - like all residents - have a right to run for office, few rules shield them from the consequences of campaigning against their own boss.

Deputies can face less desirable shifts or assignments, or, most commonly, termination. And when campaigning deputies do stay on board, it usually creates a workplace that's awkward at best, and divisive at worst, say those who have been through it.

Beadle County Sheriff Tom Beerman denied that Kludt's dismissal had anything to do with her decision to challen…

Just finished my last ad for the primary.... Ahhhhh.

I just finished designing my last candidate ad for the June 2006 primary. All the various sizes for the newspapers have been handled, and it's done. I can't tell you what a good feeling it is. It's not that I don't enjoy it immensely. It's more of a matter that I can feel like I might be able to relax.

The candidates I'm assisting or working on projects for are all into the home stretch, and barring any last minute emergencies (or spelling errors), the rest is up to them. I finally feel like I have permission to go to bed before midnight (1am...2 am...).

Don't get me wrong, I still have stuff to work on. My day job, and an ad for the blog are on my plate. But the high pressure of campaign deadlines that have kept me up at night are now gone for me, except for the nail biting. I get to sit back and watch.

All in all, I think the year of blogging has done wonders for upping my game. A couple things I've done this election are what I would consider my best wo…

Family policy council has the scoop on the candidates

Sometimes I agree with them. Sometimes I don't. But no one can deny that the Family Policy is a presence in South Dakota politics that isn't going away. This politically active group focuses on Judeo-Christian issues in Government, and could arguably be considered THE group that the Mainstream Coalition was formed in opposition of.

One of the things that the FPC has done for several years since it's inception is a voter guide intended to be included in church bulletins. For the voters in that target group, the effect of these voters guides can be tremendous.

I'm bringing this all up, because just two weeks out from the election, the FPC has their voter guides for the legislative and gubernatorial primaries available for viewing on their website.

In just a few minutes, I found out they are listing Maxwell in District 12 and Souter in District 13 as the only primary candidates supporting the legalization of medical marijuana; about the only issue from the list that Ken Wetz…


It's crunch time. with two weeks to go until the election, we'll find out soon who has run out of money, which candidates are on their "A game" and which ones need to go back to the "B league."

The pace of advertsing will pick up, and you may see some bickering between candidates spill over into the public arena.

Newspapers will be running "Candidates on the issues" pieces, and we can find out where they stand, or if they don't have a clue.

For me, it's like Christmas, Halloween, and New Years all rolled into one.

I don't know if those kids are old enough to have said that

In the Watertown Public Opinion, there's been a war of Grandchildren started. Claire Konold started by using his grandsons in one of his ads this weekend. And soon to be coming (yes, ths is a scoop) is this ad in response from his Primary opponent Dennis Arnold:

Cute kids, and I like the ad. Name and office are easily discernible.

Next up, the grandchildren's position on the meandered lakes issue.

Long-time state employee gets nice honor

From the AP article as published in the Rapid City Journal:
A longtime state government employee has received an award recognizing his work on projects such as the restoration of the South Dakota Capitol and the state memorials to war veterans.

John Moisan of Pierre was awarded the 2006 Legacy of Leadership Public Employee Award, presented by the University of South Dakota. The award recognizes public employees for dedication on the job and within the community.

Gov. Mike Rounds calls Moisan the go-to guy for events and projects. Moisan is leading the effort to plan the dedication of a memorial to Vietnam veterans this fall. He previously organized dedications for World War II and Korean War veterans.Read it all here.

John, a long time South Dakota Wildlife artist also enjoys several relations to South Dakota politics that many South Dakotans might not know. Among them, his mother Betty was the first female mayor of Watertown.

Another you might not know, is that John also enjoys the uniqu…

Mr. Branson, you've been denied. And the cock crows once.

I'd venture a guess that Bill Stegmeier has forgotten where he's heard that name nowadays.

In today's Rapid City Journal, Bill Stegmeier was quick to disavow Ron Branson from the South Dakota Movement once again. And if you listened closely enough, you could hve sworn that a cock crowed after he did so.
South Dakota groups representing a wide range of interests are banding together to fight a proposed constitutional amendment that would let people put judges on trial. Organizations representing unions, businesses, agricultural interests, school boards, county commissions, city councils, hospitals, insurance companies, law officers and lawyers support the No on E Committee.

Longtime lobbyists Dianna Miller and Larry Mann head the campaign committee, which is training people in communities throughout the state to give talks against Amendment E.

Supporters contend that the measure is needed to hold judges personally accountable for violating people's rights.

Opponents argue th…

Nothing here on the Adelstein/Schwiesow race. Nothing here at all. Move along.

I've been sitting on this one a little while. I've given hints on it, but tonight, you get the whole kahuna.

What are you going to get the priviledge to see? Republican Senate President Pro Tempore Lee Schoenbeck (Who I personally consider to be the man to beat in the 2010 GOP race for Governor) letting Stan Adelstein have it with both barrels. It's a unique insight into the dynamic of the GOP caucus, and one that I'm not sure that many of them expected to see the light of day.

This whole fray started, as I documented a little while back, with State Senator Stan Adelstein groaning about Jerry Apa giving him the business in the Rapid City Journal as follows:
Stan Adelstein, during the 2004 Republican primaries, gave Senator Jim Lintz's opponent $6,906, Senator Bob Gray's opponent $1,000, Senator Lee Schoenbeck's opponent $1,000, and Senator Jason Gant's opponent $1,000. Adelstein tried to defeat conservative candidates in order to stack the Republican Sena…

Ads are soon to be popping

Starting tomorrow evening (Monday), you should be seeing an ad on the left for a full-time campaign position that will be advertised. This will be for a campaign job for now through November.

Also, the banner ad on the right will also be going live by next week with another advertiser.

There are still lots of places left where I can stick a campaign ad, so if you're looking to hire campaign help, advertise services or drive traffic to your campaign website, I'd be more than happy to take your money.

And no, that doesn't earn anyone a "bye" from being brought up, but there are plenty of readers who disagree with me anyway, so you'll be in good company. I'm on track for 12,000 visitors again this month, so, it's not too shabby.

e-mail me here if you're interested.

A cheap plug for the local media

I got an e-mail justifiably poking me for ignoring the Lottery win coverage from the local media, and instead linking to a KELO-land story. Taking the Sioux Falls view of the Pierre story is like eating salsa made in New York City (if any of you remember that commercial).

You should check out KCCR's on-line news coverage at as written by KCCR news director Tony Mangan on a daily basis.

Now if they'd only get an RSS feed, the world would be perfect and I could include them in the news feeds on the right.

SDEA Endorses Billion. (Isn't that like an Argus Endorsement?)

From a Billion for Governor campaign press release:
South Dakota Educators Political Involvement Committee (SD-EPIC), affiliated with the South Dakota Education Association (SDEA), has endorsed Dr. Jack Billion in the June 6th Democratic primary for governor.

The endorsement reads, in part:

"It is my pleasure to inform you that the SD-EPIC Steering Committee, upon recommendation of the EPIC interview committee, is recommending your candidacy for Governor of South Dakota in the 2006 primary election," according to the letter from Donna DeKraai, SD-EPIC president and Robert Whitehead, SDEA executive director. "We have many challenges ahead of us as we work to ensure that schools can afford to have quality public schools for all students. We believe you are committed to our goal of providing a quality public education for every child in South Dakota regardless of where they live."How is an SDEA endorsement like an Argus Leader Endorsement? Republicans just don't g…

Someone likes me out there.

I had a report from a District 28 resident about the goings on, and they had an interesting commnet (at least one that piqued my interest):
Interesting that one Democrat Candidate for the Senate, Ryan Maher from Isabel reads the SDWARCOLLEGE blog - often - he says it is bookmarked on his computer!!! A shout-out in return to Ryan. Glad I can entertain you.

Now if we can just talk about changing that voter registration...

That's a scuffle?

Dave Kranz was reporting a scuffle in the abortion debate today in the Sioux Falls Argus Leader. And it really rurned out to be much ado about nothing. (I'd characterize it more as partisan puffery on the issue):
Jan Nicolay, a leader of the group trying to get the issue referred, charges that state Sen. Lee Schoenbeck and state Rep. Roger Hunt, both Republicans, are behind a plan to challenge when the session officially ended, changing the deadline.

Nicolay, a former Republican legislator and Washington High School principal, lashed out at the two legislators, saying they are trying to deny the people a voice.

"State Senator Lee Schoenbeck and state Representative Roger Hunt, the chief author of the abortion ban, are concocting a legal strategy to shut down the petition-signing process nearly three weeks before the deadline set under South Dakota law and confirmed by Secretary of State Chris Nelson," she said.

Officials in Nelson's office continue to tell the Argus Lea…