Pat Powers hates anything that challenges his Republican sponsors’ absolute control of South Dakota politics. Thus, Pat Powers hates ballot measures, in which the voters of South Dakota have frequently demonstrated their ability to see past party labels and put the kaibosh on bad Republican policy.
Thus, unsurprisingly, Powers trumpets ballot question sponsor extraordinaire Melissa Mentele’s mention on Facebook that she has caught some of her hired circulators forging petition signatures as a sign that every petition she’s circulating is bogus:
I mean dang… there are people who want to do illegal things who might be doing something illegal? Perish the thought.
If I was planning on challenging petitions this year, I’d be marking this one down as an exhibit #1 in my case [Pat Powers, “Head of New Approach SD Election Petition Effort Noting ‘Forgeries’ on Facebook,” Dakota War College, 2017.10.30].
Powers snidely dismisses ballot measures and popular democracy as an effort to “do illegal things.” But more importantly, he misses the point of Mentele’s transparency. Rather than hiding problems, the New Approach organizer exposes them upfront and makes clear to her circulators and potential signers that she won’t stand for misconduct. If anything, Mentele’s Facebook post is a sign that she is absolutely committed to not doing illegal things and insists on running her petition drives by the book.
New Approach is also breaking out the cookbook, hosting a Potluck and Petition Signing on Sunday, November 5, 4 p.m. for volunteers at its office at 2007 South Minnesota Avenue:
We invite ALL of the volunteers to come in & potluck with us this Sunday as we finish up the last day of counting, signing & packing up.
We will provide Pulled Pork Sandwiches, BBQs & some sides. We invite you all to bring a salad or dessert to share.
This is a great time to share stories, take photos and plan your trip to Pierre Monday.
This is an informal, very low key time to spend together before we all start our “Post petition season” lives [New Approach SD, Facebook event post, retrieved 2017.10.31].
Sunday is the last full day that anyone can sign an initiative petition; all petitions are due Monday, November 6, by the end of business at the Secretary of State’s office. Current forecast is partly sunny, no apparent precip to make the roads slick.