During last week’s Special Session on redistricting, a Legislative intern surprised House State Affairs with a brief allegation of political plotting within her Republican party.
On November 9, House State Affairs met at 8 a.m. to give the Senate’s proposed redistricting map a full hearing. After Senator Mary Duvall, Senator Casey Crabtree, and Four Directions Native voting rights advocate Bret Healy testified in favor of the Senate map, House State Affairs chairman Rep. kent Peterson called for opponent testimony. At 22:55 in the SDPB audio of the hearing, Karli Healey, a Black Hills State University student, BHSU College Republicans vice-president, Air Force spouse, and Legislative intern took the mic, reminded members that she had interned for this very committee during the regular 2021 Session, and then dropped a bomb seemingly unrelated to the proceedings at hand:
Tim Goodwin colluded with Senator Castleberry to recruit me into Lee Schoenbeck’s plot to reshape the State Legislature. When Tim Goodwin found out what Legislative district I live in, he started to go around announcing my campaign for the State House to his friends in Pierre, cutting deals with Lee Schoenbeck without my informed consent.
Colluded… plot… Schoenbeck—those three words used in the same sentence should set any audience abuzz. But after a two-second beat, Chairman Peterson asked for “further opponent testimony to Senate Bill 1. After rookie Centerville Representative Richard Vasgaard and failed Republican Legislative candidate Joel Koskan voiced their complaints about the Senate map, alleged colluder Representative Tim Goodwin took the mic. Rep. Goodwin made no comment about Healey’s accusation; he simply stated his objection to having Wall, Wasta, and New Underwood moved from his District 30 over to Pine Ridge-focused District 27 (with an impolitic claim that his current district includes everything that’s in South Dakota tourism magazines except for “that big bird feeder in Mitchell”).
I don’t know which Legislative district Healey lives in, but her Air Force spouse status suggests she could be in current District 35 along with alleged Goodwin co-conspirator Senator Jessica Castleberry and hard-right Representatives Tina Mullaly and Tony Randolph. Representative Goodwin is a right-wing nut himself, so why he’d want to help a mainstreamer like Schoenbeck replace fellow faithful wingnuts in Rapid City would have to boil down to personal power games rather than ideology.
But hey, Tim! Jessica! Lee! If you are colluding in some nefarious plot to reshape the Legislature, let the voters know! Give me a call!
- Rep. Goodwin kicked up a fuss against the Senate map but ultimately voted for the Senate’s final Sparrow map. Reps. Randolph and Mullaly voted against it, as did Goodwin’s District 30 seatmate Rep. Trish Ladner from Hot Springs. The Sparrow map left the south and western border of District 33 the same, leaving Goodwin’s house and nearby Sheridan Lake just barely inside District 30.
- Rep. Randolph did provide a deciding vote in killing Rep. Goodwin’s 2021 HB 1059, a proposal to make government bigger by adding two non-voting legislators to the South Dakota Ellsworth Development Authority. (Hey, if they wouldn’t be voting, why put them on the board? Let them sit in the cheap seats with the rest of us!)