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Nationally, the 2012 general election was very encouraging to me. In general, voters came out against the crazy. Apparently, unfettered corporate money and tea-party rhetoric and Republican efforts at voter suppression in Ohio and Florida did not work: voters came out in large numbers on both sides and voted their conscience.

Unfortunately, in South Dakota it was more of the same, and nowhere this more obvious than in My Fair City, Robbinsdale. (Robbinsdale is my neighborhood in south-central Rapid City, SD.)

You just wonder why Robbinsdalians continue to knock down their own state rep's votes, while consistently returning them to Pierre to churn out more bad ones. Do they enjoy electing them just so they can slap the finished product around?

More beyond the orange crüller:

Consider the resounding defeat of one of the worst laws (HB1234) put forward by the Pierre Political Class (and ALEC), a misguided educational "reform" bill. This bill is easily the worst thing to come along since HB1215, and just as much a partisan weapon against Democrats. The law was so bad it was easily brought up for referral to the voters by petition this year as "Referred Law 16."

Here's the vote in Robbinsdale on RL16:

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At the same time, our Governor-appointed legislators were easily reelected. Both Reps. Conzet and Gosch voted for HB 1234.


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Jackie Swanson used to teach in the Rapid City Schools and was an outspoken critic of HB1234. However, the good citizens of Robbinsdale that are registered Republican cannot bring themselves to vote against their label, no matter how much they hate the laws they pass.

I'm not suprised, this is what we do here. Will the R's west of the Missouri ever wake up to how much they hurt their own interests by voting party line?

I'm not holding my breath.

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Comment Preferences

  •  what type of organization do you have/? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    robbinsdale radical
    •  One that has been struggling (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nulwee, meralda

      after the defeat of Sen Tom Daschle and Rep Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin.

      SHS was a good fit for our state but was defeated in 2010 with the base when she voted against ACA and ran against Speaker Pelosi. It  was the last straw for many SD Dems.

      2010 saw our state legislative contingent the lowest since George McGovern grew the Dem Party in the 1950s. (Back then, it was zero!)

      It's an especially hard sell west of the Missouri River, where outside Indian Country, Dems are buried by the vast majority of R voters that are entirely disengaged, until election day, when they show up and vote party line, except in extremely unusual circumstances.

  •  We have Herseth-Sandlin (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    meralda

    to blame for that overwhelmingly red state legislature.

    The Democratic apparatus in this state is too weak and ineffectual to hold a line against the Republicans. Without a strong upticket candidate like H-S in her first run or Daschle or McGovern it seems like we just sit on our hands. We either vote Repub or stay home.

    I was one of those disgusted with H-S's blue dog ways but it didn't keep me from the polls. I just left that slot unvoted. Republicans swept the legislature in 2010. It was a bloodbath.

    Noem isn't much of a Representative but she hasn't done anything to tick off her base. What we Dems see as flaws the Repubs see as strengths. Check out this video produced by the state GOP.

    Varilek is a Dem and not Noem so I voted for him. He didn't get squashed as badly as I thought he would. Only 58/42. I predicted at least 60 for Noem if not more.

    That Varilek lost is not necessarily a poor reflection on him as a candidate but more an insight into the weakness of the party in this state. I follow politics very closely and scarcely registered his name let alone any policy stands.

    The Democratic candidates who have won in South Dakota have done so by aggressively campaigning. Herselth-Sandlin went toe to toe with Wild Bill Janklow. (Sad that she got to DC and squandered that cred.) Tom Daschle drove the length and breadth of the state campaigning for his House seat. George McGovern may have personally pressed the flesh with every person who voted for him and many who didn't.

    Thank god 16 went down. We do however now have a balanced budget amendment to our constitution.

  •  Off topic (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    meralda

    I just wanted to comment, that my husband and I lived in Robbinsdale, on Centennial Street, until 2002, when we moved here to Puyallup, WA.  It must be very discouraging for you to be in such a red state, with so few like-minded people.  But on a happier note, I am sure you are just as thrilled as we are about President Obama winning the election.  That area of South Dakota, is such a beautiful place.  I miss it.  It was the best place by far of any area we have ever lived.

  •  The R's West of the Mississippi? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    meralda

    I used to be a Colorado R and I think Colorado is west of the Mississippi.  In fact, I was the R Party Chairman in the county with the most votes in Colorado.  Just continue to work on it.  Most of the R's who know better have left the party and are now unaffiliated voters.  So when you see your unaffiliated voters start to go up, as they did 20 years ago here, you'll know you're at the beginning of a change.  Keep the faith.

    •  Methinks that Ken Buck (0+ / 0-)

      really did a number on the R party in Colorado, that's for sure. The marijuana law and others seem to suggest that the shakeup has allowed people to look beyond labels and seriously consider issues on their own merit. Kind of an exciting time in Colorado, no matter your party!

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