The Legislative Research Council hasn’t posted any bills in the hopper yet, but Mark Winegar has a protest on tap. The Vermillion Democrat invites us all to help ring in the 2017 Legislative Session with a protest on the Capitol steps to call for enactment of Initiated Measure 22, the Anti-Corruption Act:
On election day, voters in South Dakota passed the Anti-Corruption Act to change the corrupt status quo in Pierre. Now, corrupt politicians are attacking the new law in court and making plans to repeal it when the session starts on January 10.
We can’t let politicians ignore the will of the people – and that means we have to get their attention and show overwhelming support for the Anti-Corruption Act. We’ll be delivering petition signatures and rallying in front of the state capital building in Pierre on January 10 to pressure lawmakers into listening to the voters [“Rally to Stop Attacks on South Dakota’s Anti-Corruption Act,” Represent.us, downloaded 2016.12.25].
Winegar is organizing this protest under the banner of Represent South Dakota, a new chapter of the national organization that helped promote IM22 in the 2016 campaign. The protest convenes at 11 a.m. Central.
In a normal political environment, the case protestors could make to their legislators for IM22 would be pretty simple: voters passed a law, but one activist judge has stymied it. The first order of business for legislators, who were elected to do the people’s business, should be to immediately enact the portions of the law that everyone agrees are constitutional, then write and pass revised measures that fulfill the people’s mandate without tripping on constitutional hurdles.
Of course, in South Dakota’s political environment, that’s unlikely to happen, since the plaintiffs who brought the suit that opened the door for their fellow Republican judge to kill IM22 include 24 Republican legislators, among them the Senate Pro-Tem, the House Speaker, the majority and assistant majority leaders of each chamber, and two Senate majority whips. Nonetheless, those 24 legislators need a reminder of who writes their checks and pays for their meals in Pierre…
…which reminds me: you can come for the IM22 protest, then stick around for the Governor’s State of the State address (should be at 1 p.m.), then the big Pierre Area Chamber of Commerce Legislative Welcome dinner:
Jan 10 @ 5:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Pierre Area Chamber of Commerce Legislative Welcome is January 10th from 5:30-9pm at Pierre Ramkota Hotel and Conference Center. $25 per seat or $200 for a table of 8
Help the Chamber welcome legislators to the community for the 2017 Legislative Session. The Chamber is looking for sponsors to host the legislators. Sponsor one or more, call the chamber at 224-7361 to find out which legislators are still available [DRGNews.com Calendar, downloaded 2016.12.25].
Protestors, help your legislators work up an appetite. Engage them in friendly, vigorous, policy-oriented conversation before and after the day’s formal Legislative activities, then join them for dinner at the Ramkota to remind them for whom they really work.
p.s.: Be prepared for a Frosty reception from the Pierre Chamber of Commerce. This is their current Facebook page banner:
I want to see that Chamber snowman shaking hands at the door at dinner. Embrace the snow!