Gordon Howie has some fun bashing Governor Dennis Daugaard by reposting a Lakota People’s Law Project report from May 2015 on corruption in South Dakota. LPLP recapitulated charges from the controversial and questioned October 2011 investigative report by NPR’s Laura Sullivan that contended Daugaard and other state officials have systematically violated the Indian Child Welfare Act and turned the foster care system into a personal profit center.
I’m all for help from the right in pointing out corruption in state government. But when is Gordon Howie going to rally his readers to do something about that corruption? Howie has mounted two statewide campaigns that amounted to hill-o’-beans voter response. A handful of like-minded right-wing radicals have won Legislative seats, but they never seem to wage a concerted effort to investigate corruption and challenge the self-serving agenda they impute to the Governor.
May I suggest, Gordon, that in this time of trouble, your best route to fighting corruption is to help elect the opposition party that would gladly help you fight that corruption?
Gordon, you mention Senator Alan Solano (R-32/Rapid City) as one of the players in Daugaard’s corruption. LPLP mentions Solano’s apparent conflict of interest with state contracts for his non-profit organization (a conflict picked up by the mainstream press) and calls Solano one of “many unsavory businessmen who will continue to take advantage of Lakota children.” If Solano is part of this corruption, why not help elect his challenger in this year’s Senate race, Democrat David Hubbard?
Gordon, you express concern about $50 million in no-bid contracts. Why not tell your conservative readers to set aside their family-values absolutism—the very guns/God/abortion propaganda that South Dakota’s mainstream GOP uses to distract us while they pick our pockets—and vote for a whole slate of Democrats who could take over the Legislature and the budgeting process and order audits of all the departments you and LPLP say are handing out no-bid contracts to their pals? Why not back Democrats who would eagerly sponsor legislation to tighten scrutiny of state contracts?
Gordon, why not really kick the GOP establishment in the pants by helping elect Democrats to Congress? If the mainstream GOP is as corrupt as you say it is, one of the surest guarantees that they will continue their grip on power is the enormous campaign war chests of John Thune and Kristi Noem. If Democrats Paula Hawks and Jay Williams knock Noem and Thune out of Congress, Noem and Thune lose a big chunk of their ability to prop up corrupt Republicans in Pierre in the 2018 election. Plus, victories for Hawks and Williams this year would energize Democrats to run for more officesand wage harder campaigns in 2018, which would scare the remaining Republicans in Pierre into cleaning up their act.
Gordon, your logical course of action is clear: if the party in Pierre is corrupt, you should vote for the other party. And since the Libertarians and Constitution Partiers don’t have anyone on the ballot, your only viable option is to vote for Democrats this fall.