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Americans for Prosperity Hires GEAR UP Scandal Beneficiary Moore to Lead Crony-Capitalist Lobbying in SD

Perhaps nervous about remaining on the scene after his non-profit violated IRS rules by hosting Republican Steve Haugaard’s campaign rally last week, Keith Moore is apparently abandoning his post as state director of the South Dakota Fellowship of Christian Athletes and jumping back into the GOP crony capitalist fold as the new honcho at Americans for Prosperity–South Dakota:

“South Dakota has a lot of good things going for it, but there are some areas where significant policy reform would take our state to the next level: education, economic opportunity, and criminal justice to name a few. Last year’s legislative reforms in health care and education shows that South Dakotans are ready for real solutions to some of our challenges. I look forward to working with South Dakotans from across the state to push transformational policy solutions that will lead us out of this pandemic and to a recovery that makes South Dakota stronger than ever,” Moore said.

Prior to joining Americans for Prosperity, Moore served as the state director of Fellowship of Christian Athletes, a position he served in since 2012. Moore has also held positions with the Federal Bureau of Indian Education, the University of South Dakota, and the South Dakota Department of Education [Americans for Prosperity, press release, posted by SDGOP press release blog Dakota War College, 2021.11.23].

Missing from AFP’s bio of Moore is mention of his status as one of the beneficiaries of (unindicted co-conspirators in?) of the GEAR UP scandal. The Mid-Central Educational Cooperative paid Moore $4,000 a month for multiple months in 2013 to chair the committee charged with managing the multi-million-dollar GEAR UP grant for Indian education. (When Moore declined to testify to GOAC in 2017, he wrote that he had consulted for Mid-Central from August 2012 until September 2015, the month that Mid-Central’s GEAR UP scam fell apart with the state’s termination of Mid-Central’s GEAR UP contract.) Moore’s failure to document what if any work he did for this money was among errors that forced Mid-Central to refund $214K in grant money to the state. Moore’s questionable salary was among the first signs of trouble in the GEAR UP program, which exploded with Mid-Central business manager Scott Westerhuis’s murder of his wife and four children and suicide. AFP also fails to mention that Moore’s FCA work came as a consolation prize after the Bureau of Indian Education booted him for improperly steering a contract to old cronies.

Moore’s experience with corruption makes him a perfect fit for the AFP crony club and its close lobbying relationship with the South Dakota Legislature.


  1. ArloBlundt 2021-11-23 18:30

    Well…of course, what we lack and what we need in our government is more thieves.

  2. Mark Anderson 2021-11-23 22:16

    Come on Cory, he’s a Christian and an athlete, right? Just what sports do the Christian’s cover? Quidditch? Can you bet on them? Well anyway, in terms of Christianity the angel of the Lord didn’t quite make it to stop Scott Westerhuis like he did Abraham, he would have made a great trumpie. Amen to that.

  3. larry kurtz 2021-11-24 07:57

    Every year the so-called “Americans for Prosperity” with a lobbyist based in Sioux Falls threatens South Dakota’s Earth hating legislature with losing campaign funding from the Kochs unless they act to reverse the progress the US Environmental Protection Agency has made in South Dakota. That blackmail is very effective: witness removing environment from the Department of Agribusiness and Natural Ruination (DANR). In South Dakota white people steal money slated for American Indian education and murder their families when the jig is up then place a complicit attorney general at the head of the investigation.

  4. Richard Schriever 2021-11-24 09:16

    Keith “Hang Around the Fort” Moore. Of course.

  5. Porter Lansing 2021-11-24 09:36

    I believe the Brookings Blogger is on the payroll of AFP. #ShadyCharacter

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