SD Republican wheels started turning in 2010.
The incumbent Republican Senator was re-elected unopposed. A young, relatively unknown Republican with rockstar charisma defeated a popular Democratic incumbent for South Dakota’s sole Congressional seat. Republican’s swept to victory in all State offices and in nearly the entire legislature.
Having survived 8 grow-the-government years under Governor Mike Rounds, who claimed to be conservative (but never was and never will be), Dennis Daugaard was elected governor. He too, told us repeatedly that he was a conservative.
Initially we thought he might be, as he forced through his across-the-board budget cuts to offset the deficit he inherited from “conservative” Mike Rounds. But during that same legislative session, Governor Daugaard saw to it that two bills were passed that empowered the setup of healthcare exchanges in South Dakota to administer ObamaCare.
Meanwhile over in the Legislature, the Republican House leadership attempted to flex their muscle by compromising the confidentiality and impeding legislation in the Legislative Research Council (LRC) brought by conservative Republicans. Oh, the “investigation” revealed no wrongdoing when an LRC employee was faced with the choice of recanting his former statements or being fired and likely disbarred for violating attorney client privilege. Also, a conservative legislator was removed from the Agriculture Committee for purely political punishment.
In the 2012 legislative session, the wheels really started picking up speed when the House Republican leadership summarily tossed 2 conservative legislators out of the Republican Caucus. The Governor continued to obstruct any attempt to prevent the march to ObamaCare in South Dakota and received $1 million Federal dollars to proceed with the healthcare exchanges. The Governor also rammed an education reform bill into law that is so popular that it will likely be referred by the people and be on the November ballot.
With the dynamometer nearing overspeed, Governor Daugaard, in a galactically inappropriate move, endorsed 5 GOP PRIMARY candidates for Senate. His political managerial brio netted him 3 losses out of 5.
Shortly thereafter, the Secretary of State endorsed some GOP PRIMARY candidates.
THE WHEELS ARE COMING OFF!!!
Stay tuned here for the news from the South Dakota Republican Convention to see if the lug nuts can hold the wheels on a little longer.
***Ed Randazzo, is a nationally syndicated author. He has been a conservative activist and consultant for over 30 years and is currently the Chief News Editor of Life and Liberty Media and Co-Producer of Liberty Today, a weekly television program seen on cable systems in most of South Dakota***