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Krebs Certifies IM 22 2.0 as Amendment W for 2018 Ballot

Secretary of State Shantel Krebs has certified the first ballot measure of the 2018 season. Yesterday she promoted the Voter Protection and Anti-Corruption Amendment from “potential” to validated on the list of 2018 ballot measures.

We may call this measure IM 22 2.0, as it seeks to restore the 2016 anti-corruption law that our Republican Legislature hastily repealed, against the wishes of at least 51.62% of the 2016 electorate. The Secretary of State says we shall officially call it “Amendment W,” picking up where amendments left off in lettering in 2016.

The GOP spin blog quickly dubs it “W” for “Worthless“. Such denigration is to be expected from the elitist Republican machine that so disdains the will of the people. Perhaps that’s where we start with the branding: Amendment W for…

Recall that IM 22 2.0/Amendment W restores the campaign finance and lobbying limits of IM 22, replaces the Legislature’s consolation-prize State Government Accountability Board with the long-sought ethics commission, and protects ballot questions from Legislative interference. Amendment W omits (wisely, said John Tsitrian) the public campaign financing—”Democracy Credits”—that was in IM 22.

Opponents of campaign finance reform, lobbying limits, ethics, and the rights of the people (i.e., South Dakota Republicans) have until January 29 to challenge Secretary Krebs’s certification of the petition. I would suggest that Dusty Johnson supporters should file a challenge, since that would occupy Secretary Krebs and keep her off the U.S. House campaign trail.

Amendment W was the first petition of eight submitted before the November 6 deadline; seven remain to be validated. Amendment W had by far the largest number of signatures, so perhaps we will see the remaining petitions processed in swifter order.

Update 14:10 CST: The Secretary of State’s office provides these numbers on the Amendment W petition:

  • Total signatures submitted: 49,966
  • Number of signatures in random sample: 723
  • Number of valid signatures from sample: 516
  • Percent valid: 71.37%
  • Total number of valid signatures determined by random sample: 35,660
  • Number of valid signatures required by law for Constitutional Amendments: 27,741

Represent South Dakota, the organization that circulated the Amendment W petition, had a 28.64% error rate in its signatures. That’s slightly higher than the error rate on the IM 22 petition in 2015 (26.13% by the Secretary’s count; 28.13% by the sponsors’ count). If all other circulators experienced that same 28.64% error rate, then only two other measures—voting by mail and the drug price cap—will qualify for the ballot, while five—Mickelson’s money ban, Mickelson’s tobacco tax, open primaries, independent redistricting, and medical marijuana—will all fail to make the ballot.


  1. Darin Larson 2017-12-29

    You left out another “W” word or phrase: WTF– we have to vote on this again because the legislature overturned the vote of the people!

  2. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-12-29

    You know me, Darin, ever the prude with my language. But I recognize the merits of that response. :-)

  3. Sam2 2017-12-29

    I am republican and I will be voting fro IM 22. It will be a great amendment to the state of South Dakota

  4. grudznick 2017-12-29

    grudznick will keep his slogans under wraps until the campaigns begin. Woe is us for all the measures initiated.


  5. grudznick 2017-12-29

    Mr. Sam2, you appear to be exactly the sort of ignorant Republican these people are preying on. Please wear your hat sideways and look like a doofus when you vote, too. Spell better and learn that this is W not 22. Or so like last time and just guess.

  6. jerry 2017-12-29

    Why mr. grudznick, I do believe your arse is showing

  7. Roger Cornelius 2017-12-29

    “W” is for weasel, as in Pat Powers is a weasel.

  8. grudznick 2017-12-29

    W is for George H W Bush, one of the best presidents in the history of our country.

    W is for Wacipi, the best of which happens in October in Rapid City.

    This could be the Bush-Wacipi initiative.

  9. jerry 2017-12-29

    I’m going with Winning. Yep, winning. It takes maybe a couple of times at bat, but then you get to play small ball and keep it going.

  10. mike from iowa 2017-12-30

    Roger is on the right track. W, as in HW dumbass dubya stands for Hitler Weasel Bush, one of the gentleman who sold nuclear components to Saddam Hussein and pretended to be out of the loop on Iran-Contra shenanigans. He also aided and abetted Manuel Noriega as head of the CIA and then pretended Noriega was a bad guy when HW was annointed Raygun’s successor.

  11. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-12-30

    Winning! Winner! Good W, Jerry. Roger, we’ll save that Weasel W for other uses, but we don’t want to foul a good amendment with bad marketing targeting separate bad dudes.

    But wait—”Republican Weasels? Whack ’em with W!” Or let’s go Trump: “Widdle Wepublican Weasels? Whack ’em with W!”

  12. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-12-30

    Sam2, how many of your Republican friends do you think you can bring along to reject the party elites’ spin and vote for W?

  13. grudznick 2017-12-30


  14. jerry 2017-12-30

    To keep Indians from being losers, we should have an amendment to keep reservation lands as they are. As long as we stride down the righteous path of honor and integrity with W, let’s continue that by not allowing any further erosion of Indian Land Trusts. If there is one Indian that does not fully understand the implications of what is going on, then there must be those who will make the GOTV the most important part of our state’s heritage and future regarding the honoring of our word.

    Each person that is seeking office in the State of South Dakota should be asked what their position is on keeping reservation lands in place. That goes in particular to those that will go to Washington, I am talking to you Krebs and you Opie. Let us all hear in a strong voice from Tim as well.

  15. mike from iowa 2017-12-30

    Okay, Teach. Is whacko a noun or an order, a suggestion, a question? Help us illiterates out here.

  16. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-12-30

    [Mike! Fun question! I can conceive of whacko serving as a noun (Bannon’s a whacko) or an adjective (I’m sick of Bannon’s whacko ideas). But given that Grudz revels in wordplay, his contextless utterance could be fiddling with sounds, tempting us to hear an imperative verb and a direct object: Whack O! Always gotta be careful with Grudz.]

  17. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-12-30

    Jerry, I’d love to have a solid Indian relations/reservation economic development initiative on the ballot. If we can pass Amendment W to guarantee the Legislature won’t go sabotaging any more initiatives, maybe we can follow up in 2019 with a petition dedicating 80% of state economic development grants and loans to the ten counties with the highest (Olympic average) rates of unemployment over the past ten years… which might just become DFP Bill #1 for the 2018 Session!

  18. jerry 2017-12-30

    Agreed, by lifting those ten counties, it would be the tide that lifts all ships. All South Dakotan’s should be proud of the fact that this new bill, the same as the old bill, will be put out once again. This proves beyond a doubt that we all knew and understood the thing when it was first presented. As we have this success, let us move our state forward even further away from the dark side. DFP Bill #1 does have a nice ring to it.

  19. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-12-30

    “Rising tide lifting all ships”—you betcha! Trickle up! Hot off the press—DFP Bill 2018-1!

    Now, if we can just pass Amendment W to keep the Legislature from sabotaging this and other good grassroots ideas….

  20. grudznick 2017-12-30

    Mr. H, I am not a violent fellow and would never whack my friend Mr. o, as I enjoy to read his bloggings. I would not whack him even if I could or if he voted for the Whacko Amendment.

  21. Clyde 2017-12-30

    The most important thing W does is to not allow the shenanigans that these Republican sheep did with 22 to happen again without the voters being able to overturn it. I, however, think it is a real shame not to include publicly funded elections in the measure. The voters knew what the cost of SD election’s were when they voted in favor of 22 and apparently a buck per resident or nine bucks per voter didn’t deter their approval of it. Not just South Dakota but this country needs to have publicly funded campaign’s. It would be the first step in not having a government beholding to big money.

  22. grudznick 2017-12-30

    I double dog dare you, Mr. Clyde, to float that idea balloon all by its ownself, if you can’t tack it onto the Wacko Amendment. Float to the voters the idea of taking taxpayer money to give to politicians to campaign. In the spirit of some people’s Christmas, I triple dog dare you.

  23. mike from iowa 2017-12-31

    Wingnuts in South Dakota have already been on the horn to the koch bros to get their response to public funded campaigns.

    I think most of us have already figured out their answer.

  24. Jennifer 2017-12-31

    W for WTF, Why The F&*% are we doing this again?

  25. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2017-12-31

    You know, they won’t run it on KELO, but the “WTF” campaign, properly tuned to focus anger on the Republicans who repealed it, not the Amendment itself, could have legs in a social media campaign.

  26. Donald Pay 2017-12-31


    I don’t like WTF.

  27. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2018-01-01

    “Double-U—because you have to vote twice to get the Legislature to listen.”

  28. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2018-01-01

    Clyde, the public campaign financing was the easiest part for the Koch Brothers and SDGOP to target in their negative campaign ads. Removing that plank now forces rich Republican elitists to come out and say, “No, we don’t support campaign finance limits, lobbying limits, a strong ethics commission that can investigate legislators, or protections of your right to initiate and refer laws.”

    I’m still uneasy about writing specific campaign finance limits into the constitution. That kind of granular policy-making is better left to statute. However, given the Legislature’s dogged self-interest in resisting such measures, a constitutional amendment is the voters’ only recourse. But that’s a more esoteric political science argument that will be harder for the Koch GOP to market than their deceptive “welfare for politicians” 2016 pitch against IM 22.

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