The latest Dakota Free Press poll seeks your opinion on the longest initiative on the South Dakota ballot, Initiated Measure 22, the Anti-Corruption Act! Weighing in at 70 sections, taking up 28.3 pages of the Secretary of State’s 45-page handout of ballot measure text, and chock full of strike-and-insert language, IM 22 is easily the hardest measure around which to get one’s head. State ethics committee, new restrictions and reporting requirements for lobbyists and candidates, lower limits on campaign contributions, and those $50 Democracy Credits that the Koch Brothers do so loathe—it’s a lot to digest!
But you, dear readers, aren’t afraid of a challenge. Weigh in now: “How will you vote on Initiated Measure 22?” Vote in the near-right sidebar (view the screen in full browser mode, and there the poll is, right next to this article, right above the recent-comments widget). We’ll run this poll through Monday breakfast, then talk about the results.
Speaking of the Koch Brothers, their South Dakota minion Ben Lee reports raising $19,110 from South Dakota individuals, PACs, and parties while spending nearly $627,000 (including in-kind contributions) in Koch resources from the Americans for Prosperity office in Arlington, Virginia. That’s over 97% of the Defeat 22 money coming straight from the Kochs.
On the pro-22 side, South Dakota activist Rick Weiland’s TakeItBack.org has chipped in $11,125. South Dakotans for Integrity has received over $688,000 from Represent Us from Florence, Massachusetts, and nearly $664,000 in individual contributions. SDI lists those individual donors in two massive tables (see here and here)—kudos for detail down to single-dollar contributions, but raspberries for a non-searchable PDF sorted by first name—with gobs and gobs of small contributions, plus $275,000 from Sean Eldridge of Garrison, NY; $100,000 contributions from Jeffrey and Katherine Abrams of Beverly Hills; $100,000 from Mark Gallogly and Lise Stricker of New York City; $25,000 from Jonathan Soros of New York City; and three contributions totaling $30 from “Remove me from your list. I sdo NOT WANT TO C” from 435 East 57 Street, NYC.
Both sides in the campaign finance reform fight are getting the vast majority of their money from out of state. But at least the pro side is breaking down their individual contributions, while the Koch Brothers fight campaign finance reform to keep their high-roller donors secret.