The House has failed to override Governor Dennis Daugaard’s vetoes of House Bill 1149, the Democratic tax cut rejected by Republican budget hawks; HB 1156, the offensive bill to allow civilians to carry firearms in the Capitol; and HB 1072, the permitless concealed carry bill pushed hard by the NRA. (NRA national lobbysist Daniel Hall was in the gallery watching; no sightings have been reported yet of Maria Butina.)
Rather than trying to override the Governor’s veto of Senate Bill 164, the juvenile probation bill, the Legislature took the remarkable step of suspending the rules and allowing Senator Novstrup to submit a whole new bill on Veto Day, SB 179, which consists of the first two sections of SB 164, which the Governor found unobjectionable. Both houses were fine with that measure, which extends the maximum period of juvenile probation from four months to six. A veto seems unlikely, but I do find very interesting the question of what would happen if the Legislature passed a new bill on Veto Day that then got vetoed after they leave town. How would the Legislature come back to address that veto?
The Legislature chose not to monkey with the fifth veto, of SB 33, since, as the Governor said, the special education formula increase was taken care of in SB 35.
Thus on this Veto Day, Governor Daugaard remains bulletproof!
p.s.: Not bulletproof are Senator Stace Nelson and Representative Tim Goodwin, who made Veto Day longer than it needed to be by moving suspension of the rules to consider a resolution calling for repeal of the Affordable Care Act. Their respective chambers declined to have that discussion. Nelson and Goodwin are lucky the chambers rejected their motions; a debate on the Affordable Care Act three days after the absolute failure of their party to turn control of Congress and the White House into follow-through on seven years of election promises would only give the Democratic caucus a well-deserved chance to gloat.
pp.s.: Depending on how you count, out of 25 vetoes over seven Sessions, the Legislature has overridden the Governor four times. In other words, when the Governor tells his caucus the big NO, he gets his way 84% of the time.
Date: March 22, 2017 To: Members, South Dakota Legislature From: Daniel J. Hall RE: HB1072—Constitutional Carry—VETO OVERRIDE _______________________________________________
The NRA-ILA strongly supports an effort to override the governor’s veto of HB1072-Constitutional Carry.
Facts regarding the bill:
–Allows law abiding citizens to carry a concealed weapon without first being required to obtain a state issued permit.
–Makes no changes to provisions regarding who can legally carry/own a concealed weapon, or where a concealed weapon can be carried.
–Makes no changes to private property owners’ rights to allow/prohibit weapons on their property.
–Makes no changes to the current permitting process, as the permit is needed for reciprocity with other states.
This is a top priority bill for the NRA, and any veto override vote will be heavily weighted.[NRA-ILA, memo to South Dakota legislators, 2017.03.22]
No word from NRA on whether legislators will get extra points for overriding Governor Daugaard’s veto of House Bill 1156, the measure allowing non-law enforcement civilians to carry concealed pistols in the Capitol.
Governor Dennis Daugaard scratched his veto itch today. Stricken by the Governor’s pen today were these five bills:
House Bill 1156: This bill would have allowed individuals with enhanced concealed pistol permits to carry their firearms in the Capitol. In his veto message, Governor Daugaard says the Highway Patrol provides sufficient security in the Capitol and far better security than individuals who take one eight-hour training course to get an enhanced concealed pistol permit:
During the legislative session, meaningful debates among the public and legislators are frequent and oftentimes passionate. Where emotions can run high, it is important to be protected by people who are routinely trained to manage dangerous situations. Law enforcement training focuses on knowing when to pull the trigger—and when not to. Our law enforcement officers are uniquely able to protect the public, and I believe this bill would complicate that work [Gov. Dennis Daugaard, veto message on HB 1156, 2017.03.17].
House Bill 1072: This bill would have repealed the requirement to get a permit to carry a concealed pistol. Governor and NRA member Daugaard says our current permit requirements have stopped no lawful gun owners from exercising their Second Amendment rights but have kept permits out of the hands of hundreds of individuals not qualified to carry. The Governor rebuts absolutists by citing Justice Antonin Scalia:
As Justice Antonin Scalia wrote in his majority opinion in District of Columbia v. Heller: “There seems to us no doubt, on the basis of both text and history, that the Second Amendment conferred an individual right to keep and bear arms. Of course the right was not unlimited, just as the First Amendment’s right of free speech was not.” As an example of a lawful limitation Justice Scalia states that “prohibitions on carrying concealed weapons were lawful under the Second Amendment…” [Gov. Dennis Daugaard, veto message on HB 1072, 2017.03.17].
House Bill 1149: This bill would have lowered the monthly tax on landlines, cell phones, and radio pagers from fifteen cents to fourteen cents. The Governor (whose parents were deaf) rejects this tax cut as imperiling the sustainability of the telecommunication fund for the deaf. He also says reducing this fee amidst an already tight budget is a bad idea.
Senate Bill 33: This bill revises the special education formula. SB 33 actually froze allocations to special ed. The Governor says that zero increase was passed before the Joint Appropriations Committee found the money to allow the 0.3% index factor increase for general education in SB 35. The Governor says SB 35 increases funding for special ed, too, so SB 33 is redundant.
Senate Bill 164: This bill came from Senator Al Novstrup, who wanted to increase the maximum probation juvenile offenders can receive. Amendments added an option to put juveniles into Corrections if they pose a risk of harm to themselves. Governor Daugaard says jail isn’t the place to take care of kids in such conditions:
The term “harm to themselves” may encompass a broad array of factual scenarios: suicidal thoughts, self-mutilation, tobacco use, drug or alcohol addiction, eating disorders, or many other potential behaviors or conditions.
These serious situations are best dealt with through counseling or treatment, not Department of Corrections custody, and resources are available in communities throughout the state to serve these young people. In fact, placing juveniles with these behaviors into DOC custody, alongside those with violent or dangerous offenses, could put these young people in greater danger or influence them toward more serious problems.
If a juvenile is at risk of self-harm, Department of Corrections custody is not the best way to help that child. In its current form, Senate Bill 164 does not serve to better protect the public and it puts juveniles at risk of unnecessary confinement [Governor Dennis Daugaard, veto message on SB 164, 2017.03.17].
Maybe Governor Daugaard is just playing Grandpa Cheap again and not wanting to add to jail costs, but on this bill, he seems to be hitting the right note. If kids are suicidal, don’t jail ’em; help ’em.
SB 164 and SB 33 both passed with veto-proof two-thirds majorities.
Senator Stace Nelson and Representative Lynne DiSanto found time yesterday to troop 2,000-some letters from gun owners into the Governor’s office to urge him to sign House Bill 1072, DiSanto’s measure to repeal the permit requirement for concealed pistols.
I would think, given that she trains models, that Rep. DiSanto would do better on live video.
State Representative Lynne DiSanto sponsors the bill. She says lawful gun owners are allowed to open carry, but they immediately become criminals by wearing a coat…
“Let’s stop making the law abiding people criminals. By the simple act of placing a jacket on, possibly guilty of a class one misdemeanor, one year in jail, and a $2,000 fine for even inadvertently concealing your weapon,” DiSanto says. “You could be driving in your car with your gun in your seat next to you and your coat falls off the back of the seat onto your gun and you are now a criminal if you do not have a permit” [Lee Strubinger, “Bill That Allows Concealed Carry Without a Permit Passes House,” SDPB Radio, 2017.02.23].
O.K., first, why not hang your coat on the back of the seat, or on the back of the driver’s seat, or on the hook, or lay your coat on the seat and then lay your gun on your coat?
Second, why are you laying your gun on the seat? If you’re taking curves and hitting bumps that knock your coat around, might you not also be taking a risk that the gun falls off the seat? Doesn’t your gun owner’s higher standard of responsibility require that you keep your gun secure at all times?
Only two bills have been withdrawn. None have been voted down. Most have sailed easily through their votes. The only exceptions have been Capitol-shooter HB 1156, which passed the House 46–20, on the edge of veto-overridability, and permit-repealer HB 1072, which struggled out of House State Affairs last week 7–6 and has been deferred twice in the House to end up on the calendar today, Crossover Day, the last day on which each chamber can pass bills to send to the other chamber.
Gun groups have gotten five of the six bills they want from the House. That’s a better success rate than I’ve ever enjoyed on any particular agenda. Yet National Association for Gun Rights lobbyist Jordan Mason says that the delay of HB 1072 is Speaker G. Mark Mickelson’s effort to “kill our Second Amendment rights!” Mason also says Speaker Mickelson is treating him poorly:
Apparently – some think I’m being overly “aggressive” on Constitutional Carry with Speaker Mickelson.
I have been polite and courteous to all of our Representatives, including the Speaker. In fact, in early February when I first approached Speaker Mickelson on this bill to schedule an appointment to speak to him – it was Speaker Mickelson, that after asking if I was the “gun guy,” began ranting about how he would do “everything he could to kill our bill,” and then kicked me out of his office before even giving me the courtesy of allowing me to personally introduce myself. To be fair, I did ask him if I could at least introduce myself after he asked me to leave – which he allowed me, and then showed me the door. Even further, after Speaker Mickelson was absent in House State Affairs all morning on Feb. 15, walked in on our bill – without hearing testimony – only to vote “No.” And then, today, in his introduction of HB 1200 – a bill designed to intimidate members of organizations by compelling the disclosure of their affiliation – Speaker Mickelson named the organization I represent by name, clearly directing his intimidation efforts at our organization and attempting to shift the discussion to an ad hominem attack on our organization – not the issue or policy he presented.
In all of this – I have only asked vehemently that we only focus on the issue and to encourage Speaker Mickelson, our organization has simply reached out to his constituents about his actions and statements. If Speaker Mickelson doesn’t like hearing from his constituents, I believe there are other lines of work available for him to pursue where that isn’t a requirement.
I make no apology for continuing my oath to defend our Constitution and the rights within. I have done so honorably and I have no reason to apologize, nor do the people I represent [Jordan Mason, Facebook post, 2017.02.23].
The sad trend I see here is the gun absolutists unwillingness to compromise. Every little bill is a Constitutional crisis, a refighting of the Revolutionary War. Every tiny procedural delay is a sign of treason, a cause for mass electoral mobilization.
Get a grip, gun nuts. You’re already taking up more Legislative oxygen than your issue practically deserves. The concealed pistol permit is a reasonable requirement that helps us weed out bad actors. And the permit does not take away any of your Second Amendment rights: you can all strap a holster on your hip and proudly display your pistols around town all you want.
HB 1072’s delay is not the end of the world (though its provision allowing kids to carry concealed pistols with their parents could be the end of a few lives). HB 1072 is just another opportunity for impractical absolutists to grandstand about shiny toys that they will never use to resolve a policy debate, put food on the table, or raise anyone’s wages.
Rookie Representative Drew Dennert (R-3/Aberdeen) brought House Joint Resolution 1001, a proposal to have us vote on adding the following language to our state constitution:
Hunting, fishing, and trapping wildlife is a valued part of our heritage that shall forever be preserved for the people; water, wildlife, and other natural resources held in the public trust shall be managed by law and regulation for the public good but do not create a right to trespass on private property except as allowed by law, regulation, easement, or contract [HJR 1001, Section 2, introduced 2017.01.20].
Useless macho bang-bang legislation usually gets a warm reception in Pierre. But after the National Association for Gun Rights, South Dakota Bowhunters, South Dakota Wildlife, and the South Dakota Izaak Walton League spoke in favor of HJR 1001, Big Ag raised its voice via the Farm Bureau, the Stock Growers, and the Corn Growers to oppose the hunt-fish-trap amendment on grounds of superfluity and unintended consequences to property rights.
Rep. David Lust (R-34/Rapid City) “quizzed” Rep. Dennert and asked, based on his Legislatively engaged family’s commitment to hunting and agriculture, which is more important to the Dennert family, the ability to work the land or the ability to hunt and fish. Rep. Dennert equivocated, saying both are equally important fundamental rights and that to this day some people still rely on hunting and fishing as their main source of food. Rep. Lust followed up, noting that “your grandfather is probably listening,” and insisted that Rep. Dennert choose. Thus boxed, Rep. Dennert acceded to the primacy of property rights.
In his later remarks, Rep. Lust acknowledged the “pleasure of putting a new legislator on the spot,” then explained his opposition to the NRA’s language:
There’s nothing in our constitution right now that guarantees someone the right to farm. There’s nothing in our constitution that guarantees someone the right to be a lawyer, nor to be a fireman, policeman. All of those we would all argue are foundational to—maybe not the lawyer part—is foundational to our society, right? If we don’t have something in our constitution on farming, on some people’s right to farm—and I think Representative Dennert answered the question properly and his grandfather would be proud—we don’t need to put things like this in our constitution [Rep. David Lust, remarks on HJR 1001, House State Affairs, 2017.01.25, timestamp 24:58].
Rep. Isaac Latterell (R-6/Tea?), a great fan of trivial constitutional grandstanding, tried to save his young Aberdeen friend’s constitutional diddling by amending HJR 1001 down to just its first 20 words. Rep. G. Mark Mickelson (R-13/Sioux Falls) stepped with a substitute motion to kill HJR 1001, and House State Affairs followed the Speaker. HJR 1001 failed 9–4, losing four sponsors (Bartling, Beal, Lust, and Qualm). Eight Republicans and one Democrat voted for a cleaner constitution and Bs on their NRA report card; three Republicans and one Democrat voted in favor of NRA-stroking constitutional clutter.