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Five Dem Chair Candidates Host “Pay Your Own Way” Lunch at Al’s Oasis March 23

The Tornberg-Lucas Box Lunch of Appreciation isn’t the only chow option for Democratic State Central Committee members coming to Oacoma March 23 to elect the next chair of the South Dakota Democratic Party. In an admirably show of comity, the other five chair candidates are inviting everyone to go dutch with them at Al’s Oasis:

The five non-incumbent candidates for state chair invite you to join them for lunch at Al’s Oasis from 11:00-12:30 on Saturday, March 23. This will be a “pay your own way” event with all of us ordering off the menu and spending some time socializing and enjoying being among fellow Democrats. Please respond to this email if you plan to attend so we can provide the cafe a headcount to reserve a room for us.

Paula Hawks
Allison Renville
John Claussen
John Cunningham
Tom Cool

[e-mail from Tom Cool et al. to South Dakota Democrats, received by Dakota Free Press 2019.03.11]

From a purely nutritional standpoint, this social hour is a great idea. It starts at 11, so you can stop at Al’s first, sit down for a buffalo burger and some pie to keep you filled up through the long afternoon debate, then head to Cedar Shores, grab a Tornberg box lunch, which will available right up until the big meeting starts, and tuck that in your car for snacking on the way home. (Chamberlain Saturday forecast: 39°F and partly cloudy, so park out of the sun, and your sandwich should stay refrigerated!)

And you don’t have to feel guilty at all about taking a free lunch right before an election. It’s not anyone’s effort to buy your vote. Ann Tornberg says so:

It’s just lunch. Period. There is no intention to “buy” your vote. Frankly, it is silly to suggest that your vote is for sale at the price of a cold meat sandwich. Everyone was invited (voters and nonvoters, staff, and guests). Please don’t let this escalate into something it’s not.

This is also nothing new. Candidates for Democratic offices (like Committeeman, Committeewoman, or Chair) have held receptions at their own expense. As we stated in our invitation, this is a way to say thank-you to State Central Committee and E Board. It’s just lunch. Period.

Ann Tornberg and Larry Lucas [e-mail to Democratic State Central Committee members, 2019.03.11]

Now stop being silly and get to Oacoma March 23!


  1. Duane Anderson 2019-03-12 11:20

    Who are all the candidates for State Chair?

  2. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2019-03-12 12:19

    Hi, Duane! Sorry to leave you hanging. There are six candidates for chair: the five listed on the invite to the Al’s Oasis social hour above, plus incumbent chair Ann Tornberg.

Comments are closed.