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Dems Meet in Rapid City, Fort Pierre; 0.06% Drop Dem Registration in December

South Dakota Democratic Party leadership is back on the road with its listening tour. Party leaders and staff are coming to hear your questions and comments in Rapid City on Sunday afternoon and Fort Pierre on Monday evening:

The SDDP began its post-2016/pre-2018 public meetings after Thanksgiving. Since then, they’ve lost Mike Huether and 98 other registered Democrats, for a net loss over December of 0.06% in voter registration. Mayor Huether was among 809 new Independent registrants, a 0.68% gain. Republicans grew their roll by 487, 0.19%.

Registered Democrats in South Dakota are still up 1.97% over where we were at the beginning of 2016. For the year, Independents are up 10.98%, the GOP is up 6.73%, and total voter registration is up 6.65%.


  1. Jana 2017-01-06 11:40

    Dem’s are shrinking and the Rep’s are growing, so what are they talking about over at the press release site? Affirmative action and making sure that the GOP message is being taught in our schools. Jim Bolin has introduced a bill to silence professors that they see as too liberal under the guise of itellectual diversity which is a resurrection of Lee Schoenbeck’s 2006 bill. They want to make sure that free speech is not infringed on state campuses.

    What an incredible joke! The GOP cares not one wit for diversity of any kind and the legislature is the last place you will find free speech encouraged.


  2. John Kennedy Claussen, Sr. 2017-01-06 12:13

    It will be interesting to see what the State Party takes from these meetings. Will there be significant changes and will they be admitted publicly or at least within the realm of fellow Democrats? Only time will tell….

  3. Don Coyote 2017-01-06 12:28

    Why the public library in Rapid City? You could probably squeeze all the remaining Dems in South Dakota into a corner booth at the Flying J truckstop and enjoy a bottomless cup of coffee to boot!

  4. caheidelberger Post author | 2017-01-06 17:40

    Pennington County Dems filled a meeting room at the RC downtown library right after the election; Sunday’s meeting may draw similar interest.

  5. grudznick 2017-01-06 18:52

    The Libbies are very disgusted and they may just revolt with their fists. When a failure as big as what that young Ms. Tornburg pulled off happens you just know that it’s almost good for the libbies because they will have to try something different. Anything would be better than what they are doing now so going around and listening seems like a good idea. Listening tours. It’s a crock.

  6. jerry 2017-01-06 20:13

    Listening tours, along with conversation to address the problems of a sick society, are what will save it from itself. The problems of our state and country are not going to be solved by not having the clear conversations that involve listening as well as conversing. The open dialogue is what is missing in politics today. By not having that, we have encouraged the corruption we see running wild today. We do have a choice, that might just be to get involved, or else, we tragically implode as a society.

  7. Roger Cornelius 2017-01-06 20:22

    I can walk to the Rapid City Public Library, not so with the Flying J truck stop.

  8. grudznick 2017-01-07 12:28

    This is sad. But I do not blame Ms. Tornberg. She should keep her job. She is trying. It is an inherent character flaw in her target audience that limits her.

  9. jerry 2017-01-07 12:30

    Yes Mr. grudznick is having a sad. Methinks that you should go to a meeting of some kind to let your feelings out to be shared. I understand that there is a meeting in Rapid City on Sunday. This would be a good safe place for you to go.

  10. Porter Lansing 2017-01-07 13:06

    Grudznick continually criticizes ex-Patriots for participating in SoDak politics but has the belief he has a valid point of view in The SoDak Democratic Party. What a fool.

  11. Russ Poppen 2017-01-07 21:39

    Like it or not, believe it or not, this is happening because the Dems stopped representing the middle class and started lecturing the middle class. Will they listen?

  12. caheidelberger Post author | 2017-01-08 07:28

    Russ, I don’t entirely buy that critique at the national level, but to the extent that it is valid, does it explain the 130-year domination the GOP has enjoyed in South Dakota?

  13. mike from iowa 2017-01-08 07:45

    And what exactly have wingnuts done for the middle class? Make their lives unbearable is what. Dems got the labor unions. minimum wages, health benefits, better working conditions more free time, etc and wingnuts lie about it and voters believe wingnuts. Insanity at its finest.

  14. caheidelberger Post author | 2017-01-08 08:42

    I’m glad SDDP is still listening, but it’s time for management to concurrently launch its 2018 victory plan. We can revise procedures continually based on input and circumstances, but whatever needs to be done to right the ship needs to have started last week.

  15. Lanny V Stricherz 2017-01-08 15:01

    Not that the SD Dems will listen or that any of them even want to know what the “people” think, but I just came from the Sioux Falls Chapter of the Represent US meeting at the Sioux Falls Library. THe meeting of course it to set up the Sioux Falls group to go to Pierre tomorrow to let the legislature know that we the people don’t approve of the legislators and Judge Barnett messing with Initiated Measure 22 that we passed in the 2016 election.

    Since the meeting was scheduled for 2:00 PM, you can correctly surmise that I did not stay. Since I no longer own a car, even though I am 75 years old and have COPD, I walked the ten blocks each way (with my face covered with a scarf, naturally) checked out a book, and arrived in meeting room B at 1:50 and started reading. At one minute to two, I shut off my cell phone, and prepared for the meeting to start.

    The guy running the meeting, was still working with the technology, so I kept reading. I quit again at 2:10 and decided that if the meeting had not started by 2:15, I would leave. A couple of politicians including one of the initiators of IM22, were talking to each other behind where I was reading, and the guy running the meeting, finally said that there were about 5 people at Friday’s democratic forum, show suggested that they might come. So as I had previously decided, I left at 2:15. By then including me there were 7 people in attendance.

    Democrats, progressives, liberals whatever you want to call yourself in South Dakota, run everything by the seat of your pants. That is why you have no party.

  16. Russ 2017-01-08 18:22

    There are many good people in the Democratic Party, In the Libertarian Party and in the Republican Party. There are many good people in the Independent groups. My comments do not explain many things but are meant to challenge us to listen; listen then do! Get out of the echo chambers! We do not need to program by what wingnuts say no… matter which party they are from. The party that does the best job of listening to what informed, (not just the elite), people want and tailor their programs to what they hear… and then message that real programmatic effort back to the people… will come out in good shape! There are good people everywhere.

  17. Russ 2017-01-08 18:25

    Part two: There are good people everywhere. But the party needs to meet the people where they are and not where they want them to be; bringing them along by program desirability and not degradation. To grow we need to listen, invite, and change ourselves. To their credit, the Democratic Party has been a real refuge for those who have been oppressed and marginalized. Kudos to our sisters and brothers. Without losing that dignity and without degrading others, the party can reach out and grow.

  18. caheidelberger Post author | 2017-01-09 06:53

    Lanny, thanks for that report! That’s a disappointing turnout for Sunday’s meeting. I hope they can muster more people for the Pierre event.

    Of course, part of the problem on that issue is that we need something practical around which to rally people. IM 22 is dead, judicially and legislatively. You can’t turn out a crowd to actively participate in a court challenge. You can turn out a crowd (as I note under the New Approach/marijuana initiative post) to talk about circulating petitions and getting a new measure on the 2018 ballot.

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