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Wismer: Solution to Dumb Bills is Electing Smarter Legislators

In his opening comments at Saturday’s crackerbarrel, Senator Al Novstrup said something about the alternative to having “dumb bills” in the Legislature is resorting to “pocket vetoes” or some such less open process.

Even though Novstrup is the one with the Vulcan haircut, Senator Susan Wismer (D-1/Britton) offered the more Vulcan logic that alternatives are more abundant and more obvious than Al thinks:

The alternative to dumb bills is to elect legislators who don’t introduce dumb bills. And it seems to me that the same people who concentrate on those side issues are generally the ones who are not in favor of increases for education and health care, which are really what we’re there… about in Pierre [Sen. Susan Wismer, crackerbarrel, Aberdeen, SD, 2019.03.02].

Solve real problems—elect smarter legislators! Sounds like a good campaign poster!


  1. Michael L. Wyland 2019-03-04 06:23

    Quoting from the quote in the article: “…the same people who concentrate on those side issues are generally the ones who are not in favor of increases for education and health care, which are really what we’re there…”

    Legislators’ purpose in Pierre is to increase funding for education and health care? And we need “smarter” legislators to accomplish this single task (or is it two tasks)?

    I’ve only spoken with Sen. Wismer once, and I’m tempted to think she meant to say something more than she was quoted as saying. At least, that’s what I’m hoping.

  2. Rick 2019-03-04 10:06

    Love her!

  3. mtr 2019-03-04 10:29

    “The bills for the many are outweighed by the bills of the few, or the gun.”

  4. Buckobear 2019-03-04 10:36

    Most of the State’s electorate think they are electing “smarter” legislators. It starts with an “S” and ends with an “R.” Pity …….

  5. Porter Lansing 2019-03-04 11:39

    Wyland’s “non profit” approach is what’s got SD firmly at the bottom of almost every category of success and improvement among USA’s states. Of course the job in Pierre is the improve education and healthcare. Spending money isn’t evil. Not spending money while hospice level citizens have no where near home to go for care is what’s evil. Liberalism contains a high degree of fiscal conservatism. Bargain spending is what’s needed. Not doing virtually nothing and calling yourself a hero to small government. Socialism is bad. Very bad. Group shopping is good. Exceptionally cost effective and very good.

  6. Debbo 2019-03-04 23:34

    The best solution is often the simplest. Seems like Sen. Wismer understands that and got it right.

  7. William 2019-03-05 14:42

    Term Limits = Dumb legislators

  8. Michael L. Wyland 2019-03-05 15:45

    Under the governor’s proposed FY2020 budget, 82.7% of general fund expenditures go to three areas: 1) K-12 and tech ed; 2) Board of Regents (public universities); and 3) and health, human, and social services. See page 26 of the PDF (pg. 16 of the document) in the full budget book at

    It’s reasonable to argue that the state needs more revenue to spend more on the “big 3” in SD, but it can’t be said that we spend much of our *existing* state tax revenues outside the “big 3.”

  9. leslie 2019-03-06 07:38

    Sen Wismer-thoughts on the SDDP upcoming election? Pendems heard from Alison, John and Anne last week. A summary of Yankton’s or Vermillion’s meeting covers position discussions from Several candidates (which I can’t seem to find as linked from DFP). Thanks.

  10. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-03-09 08:26

    William, term limits haven’t stopped Al Novstrup’s density from persisting in Pierre for seventeen years.

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