An eager reader tells me that Senator Brock Greenfield has submitted his resignation… to the Clark School District. The younger Greenfield has substitute-taught in Clark, Henry, Florence, and Doland for sixteen years. (Hey, if a substitute teacher can become Senate President Pro-Tempore, I’m inspired!)
Greenfield has told KXLG Radio that Initiated Measure 22, the Anti-Corruption Act, criminalizes his continued substitute teaching by making it illegal for a lobbyist or employer of a lobbyist to give “gifts” worth more than $100 to any legislator in a single calendar year.
Greenfield, who is one of 24 legislators now taking South Dakota to court to overturn the Anti-Corruption Act so lobbyists can keep giving him free meals, says that IM 22 defines lobbyist as “a person who lobbies for a cause or somebody who employs somebody to lobby for a cause.” No such definition exists in IM 22 (here, read the text yourself).
Greenfield says that since the schools hire lobbyists, he can’t work for the schools. My search of the lobbyist registry shows no lobbyists hired by Clark, Henry, Florence, or Doland. Yes, there are lobbyists hired by the School Administrators of South Dakota and the Associated School Boards of South Dakota, but unless Greenfield’s subbing checks come signed by SASD or ASBSD, he’s in the clear to keep subbing if he really wants.
Of course, if Greenfield is serious about getting rid of anti-corruption laws that make it hard for him to do the work he loves, then maybe he should take his lawsuit a step further and fight for the rights of all the public university teachers who become criminals if they win election to the Legislature, or the state and county employees?
But factual reading of the law isn’t in Greenfield and his fellow litigants’ interests. They need to turn up the noise as much as possible to make it sound as if the Anti-Corruption Act is really some awful assault on their basic rights and not an honest effort by South Dakota voters to rein in the corruption that complacent Republican legislators have let run rampant in Pierre.