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Indy District 7 House Candidate Challenges Both Democratic Opponents’ Petitions

Independent District 7 House candidate Cory Ann Ellis is going to court to boot her Democratic opponents Bill Adamson and Zachary Kovach off the November ballot.

Cory Ann Ellis, affidavit, Ellis v Krebs, #32CIV18-000098, filed 2018.05.02, p. 1.
Cory Ann Ellis, affidavit, Ellis v Krebs, #32CIV18-000098, filed 2018.05.02, p. 1.
Cory Ann Ellis, affidavit, Ellis v Krebs, #32CIV18-000098, filed 2018.05.02, p. 8.
Cory Ann Ellis, affidavit, Ellis v Krebs, #32CIV18-000098, filed 2018.05.02, p. 8.

In an affidavit sworn Monday and filed in Hughes County Circuit Court yesterday, Ellis identifies 14 deficiencies in Kovach’s nominating petition and 27 deficiencies in Adamson’s, both of which were received and certified by Secretary of State Shantel Krebs on March 26. The most significant deficiencies are those identified in my April 10 blog post on these two Democrats’ petitions:

  1. Spencer Hawley notarized the circulator oaths on all five of Kovach’s petition sheets and four of Adamson’s eight petitions sheets. As discovered in the successful SDGOP challenge to Mary Perpich’s Democratic nominating petition for District 7 Senate, Spencer Hawley did not hold a valid notary seal when he notarized those petitions.
  2. Two more of Adamson’s sheets have notary seals that lack the notary commission expiration date.

Those deficiencies alone leave Kovach with zero signatures and Adamson with 27. Ellis identifies other errors, including four people who signed Adamson’s but also signed two other District 7 House petitions, meaning that their latest signatures don’t count. But the notary errors alone enough to justify Ellis’s request that the court “enter a writ of prohibition requiring Krebs to decertify the nominating petition [sic] of Kovach and Adamson for the Democaratic [sic] candidacy for the South Dakota Legislative District 7 House, and to refrain from placing their names on the official ballot for the general election to be held on November 6, 2018.”

If successful, this challenge would nuke both Kovach’s and Adamson’s candidacies and any chance of a Democrat appearing on the District 7 House ballot in November. SDCL 12-1-31 allows the county party to fill vacancies on the ballot that arise when a court finds a declaration of candidact invalid, but that statute only applies to the candidate’s notarized oath at the top of the petition. The circulators’ oaths that Ellis is challenging are at the bottom of the petition, on the back side, and no statute provides for filling a vacancy created by errors and invalidation resulting from those oaths.

Independent petitioning closed last week on April 24, so the only hope for placing anyone else on the District 7 House ballot would be to invoke the new House Bill 1286 Section 8, gather 2,775 signatures to create a new political party by July 1, and then hold a new party convention to nominate Legislative candidates.

3 Comments

  1. Kurt Evans 2018-05-03 14:10

    Cory writes:

    Independent petitioning closed last week on April 24, so the only hope for placing anyone else on the District 7 House ballot would be to invoke the new House Bill 1286 Section 8, gather 2,775 signatures to create a new political party by July 1, and then hold a new party convention to nominate Legislative candidates.

    Any candidate who says human life begins at conception is welcome to seek the Constitution Party nomination at the state convention scheduled for July 14 in Sioux Falls.

    For any candidate who doesn’t, the Libertarian Party is scheduled to reconvene its blizzard-busted state meeting on June 9 in Pierre.

  2. grudznick 2018-05-03 18:03

    And again Mr. Hawley hangs his head in shame, and begs for someone to cane him on the bare buttocks with a split bamboo wand one more time.

  3. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2018-05-04 05:54

    Kurt, I don’t know Adamson’s or Kovach’s stance on abortion, but 2018 SCR 3, so I guess they could all qualify as Constitutionists.

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