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Every State. Every race. Right here.

This is number 29 in a planned series of 50 entries between now and November, looking at each of the 50 states in terms of every race on that state's ticket--Presidential, Gubernatorial, Senate, House, State legislatures--the whole badlands range! Special attention paid to identifying and promoting the most important contests per state.

A relatively brief entry this time, as we look at SOUTH DAKOTA.

A traditionally Red state at the Presidential and state level, but having elected more Democrats than Republicans to Congress. Just like North Dakota. In recent years, South Dakota has been moving away from the GOP but still has a way to go before it can be called a true swing state.

BLOGS:  Badlands Blue does a great job of focusing on this corner of America.

PRESIDENT: :  Leans GOP.  I would have thought South Dakota would be the first of the Big Sky states to break tradition and come over to the Democrats in a national election, but so far both Montana and North Dakota have been closer, and even had some polls showing Obama leading. The best South Dakota has done so far has been a couple showing Obama losing by less than any Democrat has done in two decades.  It still seems worthwhile to me for Obama to make a major effort in these three in-reach-but-not-in-grasp contiguous few EV states. Together they add up to nine, which is nothing to sneeze at.  And Obama’s performance has been downright astonishing for such a traditionally red region.  Give him these states and Alaska, and we’ll be talking about a sea change in the empty quarter.

SENATE:  Tim Johnson (Inc. D). Democrats had a scare shortly after the 2006 elections when Johnson had a stroke, and for a long time, this seat was the second most endangered Democratically-held seat in the Senate. The disgusting Republicans would not stop licking their chops in public, and Dick Cheney was seen heading for Johnson’s hospital bed with a pillow.  No worries. Johnson’s a real fighter, and he’s doing for his health what he’s doing for the USA as Senator.  He’s also topped some recent lists of the most popular US Senator of them all.  Barring an unforeseen act of God, he’s headed for a third term easily.

GOVERNORS AND OTHER STATEWIDE:  None up in 2008. Every state office in South Dakota is currently held by a Republican. We need to be building our bench here.


State House of Representatives:  20D, 49R, one vacant. Need to flip 16 seats out of 70 to take control. That won’t happen in one cycle.
State Senate: 15D, 20R. Three flips to gain control. Not vital to do quickly, as South Dakota has one Congressional District and therefore redistricting will not be vital in 2010.

The wikipedia page has a pretty, colorful map showing how the rural population is pretty evenly spread out across the state, with the few tiny districts concentrated in the population centers of Sioux Falls and Rapid City.


District 1—Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin (Inc. Dem). –-SWOON—One of Kos’s very first success stories. We loved her soooooooo much!  There must be something in the wholesome farm belt food that produces such amazing physical specimens as Herseth-Sandlin and Scott Kleeb.  Then again, we have Anne Barth in Appalachia and Darcy Burner in Seattle. Maybe it’s just that Democrats are awesome!

Hmmm.....Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin in a tight-fitting ninja suit.....Oh, right. (ahem). Safe Democrat. But go treat your eyes to her website anyhow:

REDISTRICTING: One at large seat. No redistricting to be done.

Previous diaries in this series:




Texas, Part One:

Texas, Part Two:



North Carolina:






North Dakota:


California, Part one:

California, Part two:






New Mexico:



Friggin’ IDAHO:



New Jersey:


Originally posted to AdmiralNaismith on Wed Aug 13, 2008 at 01:13 PM PDT.

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