Thursday, February 8, 2018

Kelley: out of state money greases South Dakota Republicans

Don Kelley is a cool guy: as a fellow Kucinich watcher on a western South Dakota burro, windmills often become mutually quixotic destinations.

With nurse and partner, Kim, the Vietnam-era former pathologist has built a small farm along one Black Hills elk migration route within prime mushroom habitat just off the Merritt Estes Road between US385 and the Nemo Road on the border of Pennington and Lawrence Counties. They have been part of Dakota Rural Action, Solarize South Dakota and off-grid builders for at least two decades.
There’s an unfortunate trend in the actions of recent S.D. Legislatures. Many lawmakers seem wary of too much democracy, claiming that we voters can be easily swayed by outside influences (justifying the Legislature’s repeal of last year’s initiated measure which aimed to reduce the influence of money in politics). There’s an irony here: many S.D. legislators attend sessions organized by ALEC (the American Legislative Exchange Council), where large corporations provide model legislation favorable to big business, encouraging attendees to introduce these bills in state legislatures. This sounds a lot like outside influence. ALEC’s stamp can be clearly seen on S.D. laws, including reductions in the power of workers’ unions, preservation of the monopoly power of energy utilities, and the encouragement of a siege mentality regarding peaceful protests against certain corporate projects, such as pipelines. In this last example, we’ve seen attempts to restrict the right of assembly and militarization of law enforcement’s response to demonstrations. The fact that much funding for the ALEC organization comes from fossil-fuel energy companies owned by the Koch brothers may explain the emphasis in these areas. We elect legislators to represent us, not to overrule us in favor of their corporate backers. [LTE, Don Kelley, Rapid City Journal]
South Dakota's extremist legislature is a hate group.

Rapid City-based Chiesman Center for Democracy chronicles South Dakotans' voter fatigue and disgust plaguing democracy in the red moocher state.
We all tend to agree that we want our legislative body to be the best it can be, with the very best and brightest at the helm. We can also agree that we want our legislature to be comprised of members who reflect the very demographics of South Dakota. If that is true, then instead of retirees and the self-employed we need to create a legislature that allows for and encourages diversity.
Read that here.

South Dakota's GOP legislators and candidates have enjoyed millions in lobbyist benefits from the Kochs' contribution arm, the American Legislative Exchange Council; the state's junior senator was elected with cash from ALEC-backed National Federation of Independent Business.
Common Cause filed a supplement to its three-year-old tax whistleblower complaint against ALEC, and the two groups sent a joint letter to Internal Revenue Service Commissioner John Koskinen demanding an investigation, collection of fines and back taxes, and the revocation of ALEC’s status as a tax-exempt charity.
Read more here.

Pierre is a shithole where hypocrisy is simply a day to day occurrence and Republican earth haters conspire to occlude their pay to play existence while passing legislation to prevent Democrats from changing the status quo.

So-called 'Americans for Prosperity' a Koch-funded group with a lobbyist based in Sioux Falls signaled to legislators that they will lose campaign funding from the Kochs unless they act to reverse the progress the US Environmental Protection Agency has made in South Dakota.

Little wonder South Dakota voters are disgusted.

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