Or maybe not at all!!
The “big tent” philosophy of the Republican party continues to welcome the liberal wing of the party, but marginalize conservatives. The tent seems to have a hole in it!
While liberals are embraced by party leaders, those who firmly believe in the principles of the party platform are routinely marginalized, ostersized and excluded.
In some cases, even PUNISHED. So is the case in South Dakota. The Speaker of the House and the Pennington County Republican leadership have a pending lawsuit against conservative activist, Stephanie Strong. You may recall that Strong attempted to hold the Speaker accountable for what many agree was a clear violation of law by notarizing his own nominating petitions. As a result, Strong has been subjected to the retaliation of an angry political leader and his allies.
The new Pennington County Republican leadership has been talking about unity. Conservatives would like to believe their intentions are genuine, but most still remain skeptical. Thus far, there hasn’t been much evidence that the new leadership team is putting action to their unity sermon.
Recently conservatives asked the new leadership to send a letter to the Speaker, his attorney (who is secretary of the State party) and the court, requesting to be removed as a plaintiff, and requesting that the suit against Strong be dropped. While the leadership did have communication with the Speaker, the result has been disappointing to conservatives.
No modification of the suit is planned until the day of the hearing. At the hearing, I am told that a request will be made to remove the Pennington County Republicans from the suit. For unity with conservatives, that seems like too little, too late.
You might think, if unity were the true objective, it would not be too much for State and County leaders (including the Speaker) to end the punishment of those who dare to disagree with them.
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