Press "Enter" to skip to content

Dan Lederman Quits Legislature, Presumes from Powerlessness to Nominate Bolin

Back to Lederman’s first love: exploitation of violence and sex!

Did it really take Dan Lederman seven sessions to realize he was failing at balancing family life and political life? Or did he just need to mouth a graceful exit from South Dakota political interloping so he can concentrate on the real fun in Iowa, where he lives his business life?

After the Legislature gaveled out today, Senator Dan Lederman (R-16/Dakota Dunes) announced he’s quitting the charge to serve that his constituents handed him just four months ago.

Every once in a while, there comes a point in every man’s life when he sits and takes stock; he looks at what he has, and what he owes, and makes a determination how he will further proceed.   I found myself mentally doing that in recent months, with it becoming all too real with the passing of a loved one very recently.

I found myself looking at my own personal ledger. And what I found, was that I owe a debt for many things.  I am so far in the red, I need to start paying that tremendous debt back.  Because these are debts I owe to my family for their love and support over the years.

And it’s my intention of paying it back in full, with interest.

With that being said, I’m announcing my retirement from the South Dakota State Senate, effective immediately [Dan Lederman, press release, 2015.03.30].

Lederman took office at the beginning of the 2009 Session in the House. Voters permitted him their Senate Seat starting in 2011. He served three full terms and this fraction of his fourth.

O.K., fine, bye Dan, you’re done…

…but no. Mr. Lederman presumes to tell us who should succeed him:

Governor Daugaard will be tasked with naming a replacement as a result of my resignation. I would encourage him to appoint, and heartily endorse, State Representative Jim Bolin in my place. Jim has been a good and experienced leader for our District. Jim’s heart, mind and his priorities are in the right place, and we would be well served [Lederman, 2015.03.30].

Sure, Dan, we’ll take that under advisement.

How about we keep it simple? How about we not play musical chairs with House members? How about we leave the composition of the Legislature as much in the form the voters asked for as possible (ah, do you see a Republican theme of disregard for the electorate here?) and finally give the job in the highest-turnover district in the state to the woman who has sought the job and won solid votes two elections in a row, Ann Tornberg?


  1. Curt 2015-03-30 14:43

    I suppose it should come as no surprise that the arrogant former senator would presume to tell the governor who should replace him. At least whoever comes next should easily be able to fill Lederman’s stinky shoes.

  2. Lynn 2015-03-30 14:52

    Oh dear! After reading Senator Lederman’s resignation press release and the comments at a another site talking about the burdens and overwhelming incredible unselfish sacrifice legislators make I couldn’t help but think of sad violin music playing in the background.

    EB-5, Cronyism, voting themselves a substantial pay raise ignoring the plight of teachers, ALEC, Voting to get paid to attend swearing in of offices not their own, going to the Governor’s Inauguration and ball, recruiting a number of decoy candidates, using their elected positions to suppress democracy by protecting their power and use tax payer money to benefit not only themselves but their supporters. Oh! A tangled web they weave in this small state of South Dakota.

  3. jerry 2015-03-30 15:10

    Maybe the EB-5 might have reached Lender Man. Quite a coinkydink that he quits right at the same time Bollen has to get a license for his crooked business scheme.

  4. MOSES 2015-03-30 15:17

    Man he was lousy in the senate.

  5. rollin potter 2015-03-30 16:34

    HEY MOSES, That is what the south Dakota voters like!!!!!!! they just keep voting in more of them all the time!!!!!

  6. Ellee Spawn 2015-03-30 16:56


  7. Jeff Barth 2015-03-30 17:23

    Democrats withdraw before the election.
    Republicans quit after the election.
    Then the Governor appoints and they keep their majority.

  8. grudznick 2015-03-30 17:29

    What will happen to his PACK? Does he have to give the money back to people who donated to it?

  9. Bob Newland 2015-03-30 18:04

    Let me add my sorrow to the tears spilled on this page.

  10. Lynn 2015-03-30 18:23


    That money donated to Lederman’s Rushmore Pac is gone and will be used in the future to support or go against whatever he or the principles of that PAC choose I’d imagine.

  11. Kurt Evans 2015-03-30 18:46

    Pat Powers wrote:
    >”That’s got to be the funniest thing I’ve read today. Liberal Dems mewling that Ann should get the Lederman seat.”

    That’s interesting, because the funniest thing I’ve read today was written by Powers:
    “Please, get over your partisanship.”

    In the “mewling” post, Powers bashes “liberal Democrats” like Bernie Hunhoff for having the audacity to defend free elections. He blocked the following comment:

    The purpose of ballot-access requirements is to reasonably limit the number of candidates in a given race. It isn’t to prevent recognized parties from participating in primaries financed by their own tax dollars, much less to prevent them from participating in general elections. It also isn’t to prevent individual citizens, regardless of party affiliation, from running independent campaigns.

    The fact that no candidate qualifies for a party’s primary election most likely indicates that the requirements for doing so are too stringent. In that scenario there’s no good reason to prevent a recognized party from nominating by some other means.

    It seems a little ironic when Dan Lederman opposes nomination by convention on the grounds that it “deprives … the citizens of the state from making a decision …” In reality an uncontested election is what prevents the citizens of the state from making a decision.

    Republican legislators have moved the filing deadline for independent campaigns forward three times since 1998, from August to late June to early June to April. Now they’re trying to prevent any citizen who registers with a party affiliation from running an independent campaign at all.

    There’s no justification for recognized parties or independent candidates to be restricted by pre-August filing deadlines for races in which they have no primaries. Non-Republicans could stop looking for “loopholes” if Republicans would stop weaving the web.

  12. grudznick 2015-03-30 19:24

    Ms. Lynn, that is bad news. Bad news indeed. Not quite Mr. Howie bad but still bad. At least we can hope that Mr. Lederman is going to dole out the funds in a manner as before unlike Mr. Howie who just pumped them into his church and real estate business.

  13. Curt 2015-03-30 19:39

    Mr Barth –
    Excellent analysis and succinct synopsis of SD politics. You’re still one of my heroes.

  14. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-03-30 20:42

    Lynn, I’d certainly have trouble keeping my personal and moral life in balance if I were promoting the Legislative agenda you described.

  15. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-03-30 20:47

    Good comparison, Jeff. And none of Lederman’s colleagues are demanding that he fulfill the criteria laid out in SB 69 for mere candidates who want to withdraw from the ballot. “Family time” is not one of the reasons candidates are allowed to cite to get off the ballot.

    Wait—I think Grudz just made a good point. If Lederman is getting out of South Dakota politics (and Dan, if you meant what you said today, you are), Pat just lost a prime patron. Poor Pat; no wonder he’s blurting out the same old incoherent ridicule.

  16. grudznick 2015-03-30 20:51

    If Mr. Lederman keeps his PACK going he can advertise on Mr. PP’s blog still. He could even advertise here, Mr. H.

  17. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-03-30 20:51

    You know, maybe it’s time for a special election amendment. Let’s bring back this blog’s special election bill from 2014, where we said gubernatorial discretion should be removed from all such appointments and that all vacancies should be filled by clear formulas or special elections. Is a little democracy really that expensive? And if it is, let’s require the resigning candidate to donate all remaining campaign funds to help cover the costs.

  18. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-03-30 21:05

    Kurt, as usual, Powers misses a chance to play real chess. Appoint Tornberg, and she’ll probably be too busy to chair the party during Session and probably during the whole year. The Dems will have to go through a second regime change in less than a year, and given how prone we Dems are to squabbling, that new chair election would surely be an excuse for at least a minor party civil war. Daugaard defuses some general Dem anger while provoking a fun battle at SDDP Central. Appointing Tornberg isn’t just the proper democratic course of action; it’s GOP dirty tricks par excellence.

    Forget taking over the SDDP; when I grow up, I want to run the SDGOP. I’d have so much fun.

  19. Lynn 2015-03-31 06:14

    Bob Mercer wrote an interesting article regarding Dan Lederman’s resignation in Pure Pierre Politics I had a feeling that there is more to this than a touchy feely reason for his early resignation.

    How much did Senator Dan Lederman spend to defeat Ann Tornberg for that state senate seat? $50,000?

    How many votes or percentage did he win by?

    What is the salary for that state senate seat and he resigns right after the legislative session after he is elected?

    I’m curious to know what his chances would be if he ran again with the number of past donors/voters he ticked off from the handling of the Sioux River Dakota Dunes flooding.

    Sorry for the skepticism and harshness but given the history of what has been happening in our state it’s hard not to be at times.

  20. Jana 2015-04-01 00:26

    Lederman’s PAC had a big data dump of filings today.

  21. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-04-01 07:20

    Did they include a statement of termination? Where’d the money go?

  22. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-04-01 07:21

    I appreciate the skepticism, Lynn, but if there is widespread frustration with Lederman and the Governor on the handling of the flooding, why didn’t that frustration turn into a loss for Lederman last November?

  23. Bill Fleming 2015-04-01 08:11

    So first Lederman, and now Rave? Majority Leader and Assistant Majority Learer of the SD Senate? Back to back resignations? How often does that happen?

    A couple of other things I notice… PP and our buddy Troy seem kind of defensive about it in a sort of ‘move along, nothing to see here’ kind of way.

    And then by contrast, wasn’t there a big stink about keeping Dem candidates on the ballot and zero tolerence for their being able to change their minds?

    Seems like something’s afoot, doesn’t it? …or am I just channelling Sibby over here?

  24. Troy 2015-04-01 08:53


    I have no problem with placeholders and have said so many times. I have no problem with people re-ordering their life as they see fit.

  25. tara volesky 2015-04-01 09:14

    Ask Annette Bosworth, Joel Arends and Patrick Davis the real reason Lederman quit. Did anybody read the Newsweek article?

  26. Bill Fleming 2015-04-01 09:16

    Okay, good. So Troy, is that what Lederman and Rave were? Placeholders?

    Or is their simultaneous resignation just a coincidence? And a real, no kidding suprise?

  27. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-04-01 09:23

    Nor do I have a problem with people reordering their lives. But these reisngations demonstrate that vacuity of the Republicans’ hue and cry over ballot placeholders, where we simply ask that party officials be given a chance to fill spots on a ballot, while Republicans happily avail themselves of the Governor’s ability to fill actual public offices to give newbies the huge boost of incumbency. The growing number of appointees in the Daugaard Legislature calls into question the effective separation of powers.

  28. Lora Hubbel 2015-04-01 09:26

    Every resignation should be replaced by the people with a vote…not an appointment by the governor.

  29. Rorschach 2015-04-01 09:38

    It’s curious that someone would resign to spend more time with his family – just when legislative activity has ended for the next 9 months. All he really had to do as a senator in the next 21 months is go to Pierre for 2 months next year. The rationale for this resignation doesn’t add up.

    My guess is that rather than spending more time with his family he’s going to try to be a money player in the Republican presidential race and try to get himself some plum federal appointment. But he doesn’t have to resign to do that, so the resignation still doesn’t add up.

    I wonder if he’s been caught doing something that the GOP is willing to sweep under the rug if he resigns?

  30. Bill Fleming 2015-04-01 09:53

    I agree, Rorschach, something doesn’t pass the smell test. That said, I’ve never had much of a nose. Is that smell smoke? Or just baloney. :-)

  31. larry kurtz 2015-04-01 09:54

    On 100Eyes, Lalley and Ellis bemoaned the drive to Pierre to rubber-stamp the governor’s agenda and the futility of subsidized ‘essential’ air service as a bridge to nowhere in a state comfortable with being a perpetual federal disaster area.

  32. Kurt Evans 2015-04-01 10:42

    Cory wrote:
    >”But these reisngations demonstrate the vacuity of the Republicans’ hue and cry over ballot placeholders, where we simply ask that party officials be given a chance to fill spots on a ballot, while Republicans happily avail themselves of the Governor’s ability to fill actual public offices …”

    Vacuity indeed. Also rank hypocrisy. And Rave and Lederman are as guilty as anyone (except possibly Corey Brown) of blowing off the many well-reasoned objections to Senate Bill 69.

    Credit Lederman with the better excuse for violating the public trust. “I got a promotion” doesn’t carry much moral weight.

  33. Ellee Spawn 2015-04-01 13:28

    Cory wrote: “You know, maybe it’s time for a special election amendment. Let’s bring back this blog’s special election bill from 2014, where we said gubernatorial discretion should be removed from all such appointments and that all vacancies should be filled by clear formulas or special elections. Is a little democracy really that expensive? And if it is, let’s require the resigning candidate to donate all remaining campaign funds to help cover the costs.”

    I think that it’s ballot initiative time again. Cory, if you want to get the petition for this one ready, I’m on board to get signatures. What’s one more?

  34. caheidelberger Post author | 2015-04-01 13:41

    Ellee, I vow to take out no more petitions until I have submitted the referendum petitions for SB 69 and SB 177.

Comments are closed.