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Biden Coronavirus Relief Could Boost South Dakota GDP 6% to 9%

South Dakota’s gross domestic product shrank by 1.7% in 2020. That’s better than the national pandemic recession of 3.5% in 2020. We also led the national rebound in the fourth quarter of 2020, posting 9.9% economic growth compared to the third quarter and outpacing the national growth of 4.3%.

Expect an even bigger boom this year, thanks to the massive American Rescue Plan Congress and the President enacted to repair the economic damage done by coronavirus, over the objection of every one of South Dakota’s elected leaders. According to a Legislative Research Council analysis presented yesterday to the Legislature’s Executive Board, the American Rescue Plan will pour at least $3.397 billion into South Dakota’s economy:

Legislative Research Council, "American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Funding Overview," presentation to Executive Board, 2021.04.22.
Legislative Research Council, “American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Funding Overview,” presentation to Executive Board, 2021.04.22.

$3.397 billion—that’s 5.94% of South Dakota’s projected annualized GDP from rosy Q4 2020. The LRC notes that stimulus will be a little bigger if we expand Medicaid under the incentives of the ARP; according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, South Dakota would receive another $55 million in one year, raising the total ARP stimulus to 6.04% of South Dakota GDP.

That 6% boost to GDP is just the direct effect of dumping a truckload of federal cash into South Dakota’s economy. When stimulus dollars are spent wisely—i.e., invested in helping people who really need help rather than handing it out to rich guys whose gains don’t trickle down—a dollar of government investment can produce $1.50 in economic growth. So used properly, the American Rescue Plan stimulus could produce a whole year of 9% GDP growth in South Dakota.


  1. jerry 2021-04-23 10:49

    Or, we could just die off. 4,866 last 7 days
    +875 New Deaths

  2. Tim H 2021-04-23 14:26

    Hello kettle meet pot. First you say S.D. is a moocher state because we receive back $1.21 for every $1.00 paid in. Now you are singing the praises of Biden because with a government hand out the GDP of S.D. is going to increase up to 9%. You can’t have it both ways so which is it?

  3. Mark Anderson 2021-04-23 16:37

    Come on Cory, you know the pub refrain is to give it to the rich and their piss will help everyone, it doesn’t trickle up you know?

  4. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2021-04-23 17:56

    Hey, Tim, I meant every word I said, and every word I said is consistent:

    1. We are a moocher state, surviving on huge infusions of cash from a handful of other, more prosperous, and mostly bluer states.

    2. That federal cash keeps this state livable, and I am thus immensely grateful for it and want it to continue.

    I have no contradictions on this issue, Tim H. It’s you and the Republicans who tell us the federal government, federal taxes, and federal welfare checks are bad while you enjoy the undeniable benefits of such liberal socialist policy. Kristi Noem brags about South Dakota as a land of Freedom™, but the quality of life in South Dakota has depended since before statehood on socialism. How do you resolve your value contradiction, Tim H?

  5. Mark Anderson 2021-04-26 16:42

    Come on Cory, you know the line, take the cash and complain that its not enough. Its really embarrassing for the pubs you know. They are all freedom loving welfare recipient’s. They have held off on medical care for their citizens. They let people die to be free. You know the song, die free, as free as the wind blows. Tim also love cremation.

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