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Rhoden Thanks Low-Paid Cops by Having Lunch with Them

Larry Rhoden isn’t blocking traffic, but he is out making law enforcement feel beautiful. Out carrying the Twitter load for his Congressionally recessed running mate Kristi Noem, the Republican candidate for lieutenant governor had lunch with cops yesterday on the campaign trail:

Larry Rhoden, campaign Tweet, 2018.08.07
Larry Rhoden, campaign Tweet, 2018.08.07

“No better way to thank the folks in law enforcement than to break bread with them,” Tweets Rhoden.

Actually, Representative Rhoden, one better way to thank law enforcement is to make their jobs easier by following the law, by, for example, not causing false alarms that drag police from preventing actual crimes.

Another better way to thank law enforcement is for all of us to pay our taxes and support robust public budgets that pay cops well for the risks they take on our behalf. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says median pay for police nationwide in May 2017 was $61,050. In South Dakota, the median police salary was $47,800, a 22% gap, and far lower than in any surrounding state:

Bureau of Labor and Statistics, Annual mean wage of police and sheriff's patrol officers, May 2017.
Bureau of Labor and Statistics, Annual mean wage of police and sheriff’s patrol officers, May 2017.
state median police salary number of police population cop per 1000 pop
Minnesota $64,700 8,680 5,576,606 1.56
Nebraska $57,090 3,390 1,920,076 1.77
Iowa $56,620 4,980 3,145,711 1.58
North Dakota $56,420 1,640 755,393 2.17
Wyoming $56,240 1,100 579,315 1.90
Montana $54,590 1,600 1,050,493 1.52
South Dakota $47,800 1,750 869,666 2.01

Minnesota pays its cops a median wage 6% better than the national median and nearly $17,000 better than South Dakota’s median. Don’t tell me cost of living makes up that difference or the $7,000 to $10,000 differences found in every other neighboring state.

Interestingly, South Dakota employs more cops per population than every neighboring state except for North Dakota. Hmm… if we applied Dennis Daugaard’s thinking about teachers to police, we could raise police pay by getting rid of a couple hundred cops (government bloat, right?) and getting our police/people ratio down to something closer to the regional median.

But all this talk about low police pay is probably just a false alarm. We should just have lunch and Tweet happy thoughts. That’s the Larry Rhoden’s preferred governing style.


  1. Rorschach 2018-08-08 09:23

    Where is Kristi? Someone put her picture on a milk carton. Rhoden is out campaigning, but she’s not.

  2. Kelly 2018-08-08 14:37

    Great combo. The fake lawyer running for AG, can prance around the state trying to act like an real lawyer, too. The guy has absolutely nothing to do but drive around and eat sweets.

  3. grudznick 2018-08-08 17:31

    When Larry Rhoden is Lt. Governor, he won’t need guns, but guns will need Larry Rhoden.

    And, I’m betting all the Rhoden Rhangers get to be deputized as a new State Trooper Reserve force.

  4. OldSarg 2018-08-08 17:46

    Why is it always about money for you Cory? Give teachers “more money”, Cops “more money”, massages for teachers “more money” , Farmers “more money”. Is it just a bad case of envy? Seriously, do you think it all has to be about money or is it that you think everyone else should give more of their money to make you happier? Why don’t you give more of your own money? Oh! You need more of your money but others don’t need their money as much as you think they need their own money. . . just pathetic “envy”.

    “I am a true laborer: I earn that I eat, get that I wear, owe no man hate, envy no man’s happiness, glad of other’s good”
    ~ William Shakespeare

  5. OldSarg 2018-08-08 17:49

    See if this helps: “Envy, if surrounded on all sides by the brightness of another’s prosperity, like the scorpion confined within a circle of fire, will sting itself to death.”- Charles Caleb Colton

  6. OldSarg 2018-08-08 17:51

    I think this one is very applicable: “Oh, what a bitter thing it is to look into happiness through another man’s eyes.”- William Shakespeare

  7. jerry 2018-08-08 17:55

    Envy, according to Minneapolis Police. “A popular nightclub blamed for contributing to late-night crime in downtown Minneapolis drew further scrutiny Friday when state officials revealed they had raided the business looking for evidence of tax fraud.”

    Fraud really fits this bunch perfectly Comrade old soviet. Thanks for pointing that out.

  8. mike from iowa 2018-08-08 18:09

    OldSnickerdoodle only wants the wealthy to have more taxpayer’s money. Not people who actually work and put in their time providing necessary services for their friends and wingnuts alike.

    I see 174k per year plus benefits wasn’t enough to keep 7 wingnut pols from insider trading and securities fraud. But, wth, 174k is much less than South Dakota’s teachers and cops get per year, right, OldSnickerdoodle?

  9. OldSarg 2018-08-08 18:37

    mike you don’t work at all. You really have no say in anything involving work, careers or showing up someplace other than a handout line.

  10. Roger Cornelius 2018-08-08 18:46

    This is still America even with Trump as president and mike from iowa has a Constitutional Right to speak on any subject at anytime just like the rest of the country.

  11. chris 2018-08-08 21:01

    lol, “Oldscrooge” is more like it!

  12. Debbo 2018-08-09 00:16

    Did Rhoden buy?

  13. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2018-08-09 05:38

    OS is right. Why is it about money? Why do teachers and cops expect any paycheck? Why do farmers complain about tariffs cutting into their profits? Why does Donald Trump think farmers need $12 billion in welfare checks?

    Once again, faced with facts he can’t refute (including that Rhoden said something kinda dumb and policy-ignorant), OS goes for the cheap personal attack, something that doesn’t require real research or analysis… and requires me to engage in this kind of meta-post critiquing him, which is really what he enjoys far more than discussing policy… because, apparently, he’s the one with envy. OS envies the attention that public figures and policies get and wants himself to be the center of our attention.

    But that’s too psychological for me. The simpler explanation is that OS is an anonymous troll who wants to distract us from discussing the continual failure of the South Dakota Republican Party to carry out good public policy.

  14. OldSarg 2018-08-09 10:03

    I didn’t say “Why is it about money?” I said “Why is it always about money for you Cory?” I never said teachers , cops or anyone should NOT be paid. I suppose I should have said “Cory, why is it always about you wanting what others have?”

    So , lets address Cory’s other concerns:
    1) Why do farmers complain about tariffs cutting into their profits? Because there is a loss of the profit they “worked” for but you c complain about it because you think it is something you can hold against whatever person, party or group you decide to trash that day.

    2) Why does Donald Trump think farmers need $12 billion in welfare checks? Trump went forward with the proposal to counter the media’s storyline, provided by other countries, which was hurting our Nation’s trade position. It’s kind of like poker but our media is telling the other players what cards Trump holds.

    3) Cory, you know this is true. You’re not stupid but if you feel twisting the truth somehow is helping you party you are mistaken. This has all reached the point of ridiculous. You attack me because I don’t twist the truth nor do I need to point out the truth if it is sitting in the middle of one’s face. I understand a bunch of your lemmings want me blocked because they get all upset but you don’t block me and go ahead and tell all your lemmings why you don’t block me: Because without the few truth tells like me your lemmings would have no place to get overly excited and continue to spread your twisted truths. Luckily most of your lemmings have already failed in life and no one in their personal spheres listen to them.

  15. John 2018-08-09 18:55

    They love big government. They just hate paying for it.
    SD could afford to layoff 600 cops – getting the the productive, creating economy, and without raising taxes, could increase the pay of remaining, with virtually no effect on the crime rate.

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