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Odenbach’s List: Spearfish Lawyer Donates $26,250 to 39 Candidates to Counter Schoenbeck’s Doodle-Whacking

And in this corner, weighing in at $26,250, ready to water the Tree of Liberty with the blood of Lee Schoenbeck and other tyrants, the Queen City Quasher, the Lawrence County Litigator, Spearfisher Sco-o-o-o-ot O-o-o-denba-a-a-a-ach!

Another Class AA lawyer is spending a noteworthy sum on fellow Republican primary candidates to reshape the Legislature more to his liking. District 31 Representative Scott Odenbach of Spearfish formed the Liberty Tree PAC in March 2021. He raised over $30,000 for Liberty Tree PAC last year and over $36,000 this year to donate $26,250 so far this primary season to 11 Republican Senate candidates and 28 Republican House candidates, all of them engaged in primaries:

Legislative Candidates Receiving Odenbach/Liberty Tree PAC Money Chamber District Amount
Spencer Wrightsman S 2 $500.00
Al Novstrup S 3 $500.00
Colin Paulsen S 5 $1,000.00
Julie Erickson S 7 $500.00
Heather DeVries S 8 $1,000.00
Brent Hoffman S 9 $1,000.00
Spencer Gosch S 23 $1,000.00
Jim Mehlhaff S 24 $1,000.00
Tom Pischke S 25 $500.00
Julie Frye-Mueller S 30 $1,000.00
Ron Moeller S 31 $500.00
Janet Jensen S 33 $500.00
Jeff Shawd H 2 $500.00
John Sjaarda H 2 $500.00
Kaleb Weis H 3 $1,000.00
Adam Grimm H 4 $1,000.00
Fred Deutsch H 4 $1,000.00
Doug Post H 7 $500.00
Mellissa Heermann H 7 $500.00
Lecia Summerer H 8 $500.00
Bethany Soye H 9 $1,000.00
Chris Karr H 11 $1,000.00
Cole Heisey H 12 $500.00
Sue Peterson H 13 $1,000.00
Penny Baybridge H 13 $500.00
Gina Schiferl H 14 $500.00
Tyler Tordsen H 14 $250.00
Jessica Bahmuller H 19 $500.00
Ben Krohmen H 20 $500.00
Greg Brooks H 23 $250.00
Scott Moore H 23 $250.00
Mary Weinheimer H 24 $1,000.00
Kathy Rice H 29 $500.00
Trish Ladner H 30 $500.00
Phil Jensen H 33 $500.00
Jodie Frye H 34 $1,000.00
Tina Mulally H 35 $500.00
Tony Randolph H 35 $500.00
Tom Brunner H 28B $1,000.00
Total $26,250.00

Odenbach’s PAC money appears to target districts where Watertown lawyer and District 5 Senator Lee Schoenbeck has dedicated even more money to candidates in his campaign to root out the Republican whack-a-doodles who dare resist his and Governor Kristi Noem’s agenda in Pierre.

Odenbach and Schoenbeck are backing challengers in each other’s back yards: Odenbach has given District 5 Senate candidate Colin Paulsen $1,000, and Schoenbeck has given District 31 House candidate Mistie Caldwell $3,200.

Odenbach’s donations target 12 Senate contests and 22 House contests. Eleven of the 12 districts where Odenbach has sent Liberty Tree money have a Senate candidate funded by Schoenbeck. In the exception, new Madison/Volga District 8, Odenbach has given a newcomer apparently unknown to SDGOP insider Pat Powers, Heather DeVries, $1,000 in an apparent attempt to oust her neighbor and incumbent GOP Senator Casey Crabtree. The mellow, mainstream District 8 incumbent has received no money from Schoenbeck and, given that Odenbach’s donation is 56% of DeVries’s total campaign income and that Crabtree has 75 times more cash on hand than DeVries, doesn’t need any.

Senate candidates receiving contributions from Scott Odenbach's Liberty Tree PAC or/and Lee Schoenbeck's campaign committee, 2022 primary election cycle, based on campaign finance reports filed with South Dakota Secretary of State through 2022.05.23. Purple: cash advantage Schoenbeck. Pink: advantage Odenbach. Green: equal spending.
Senate candidates receiving contributions from Scott Odenbach’s Liberty Tree PAC or/and Lee Schoenbeck’s campaign committee, 2022 primary election cycle, based on campaign finance reports filed with South Dakota Secretary of State through 2022.05.23. Purple: cash advantage Schoenbeck. Pink: advantage Odenbach. Green: equal spending.

 

Odenbach has sprinkled some Liberty Tree cash on 20 House districts with primaries.  That cash is running into Schoenbeck money in 15 of those districts.

House candidates receiving contributions from Scott Odenbach's Liberty Tree PAC or/and Lee Schoenbeck's campaign committee, 2022 primary election cycle, based on campaign finance reports filed with South Dakota Secretary of State through 2022.05.23. Purple: cash advantage Schoenbeck. Pink: advantage Odenbach. Green: equal spending. Blue: candidate funded by Odenbach and Schoenbeck.
House candidates receiving contributions from Scott Odenbach’s Liberty Tree PAC or/and Lee Schoenbeck’s campaign committee, 2022 primary election cycle, based on campaign finance reports filed with South Dakota Secretary of State through 2022.05.23. Purple: cash advantage Schoenbeck. Pink: advantage Odenbach. Green: equal spending. Blue: candidate funded by Odenbach and Schoenbeck.

Schoenbeck has reported spending over $39,000 on his 37 candidates, so it figures that, in most district match-ups, Schoenbeck is outspending Odenbach. The Spearfish lawyer is outspending the Watertown lawyer in Senate District 8, Sioux Falls House District 13 (Odenbach has given his conservative colleague Rep. Sue Peterson $1,000 and newcomer Penny Baybridge $500, while Schoenbeck has given the more moderate incumbent Richard Thomason $1,000), and Belle Fourche/Lemmon single-seat House District 28B (Odenbach has given former right-wing legislator Tom Brunner $1,000, while Schoenbeck has given Neal Pinnow $500).

Three House candidates meet both Odenbach’s and Schoenbeck’s ideological test: Sioux Falls District 9 incumbent Bethany Soye, Brookings District 7 newcomer Mellissa Heermann, and Sioux Falls District 14 newcomer Tyler Tordsen. Schoenbeck sent Soye his $500 last year and his since sent $1,000 to each of her challengers.

Odenbach has dumped another $15,000 into the Conservative Principles PAC formed on April 26 by Rep. Liz May (R-27/Kyle). May hadn’t deployed any of that cash as of May 18.

Looking just at contributions, Odenbach has done pretty well deploy two-thirds as much on direct candidate contributions through his PAC as Schoenbeck has through his candidate committee. But that comparison doesn’t take into account the fact that Schoenbeck’s own PAC, South Dakota Strong, has spent another $138,000 on advertising, bombing Reps. Gosch, Pischke, and Randolph and other Odenbach favorites with “Drain the Swamp” postcards. Liberty Tree reports no such expenses for advertising; that $26K given directly to candidates is all Odenbach has mustered so far.

Odenbach himself has $19,775 left in Liberty Tree PAC, plus another $5,000 his friends Bart and Nicole Krautschun just gave him last Friday. Schoenbeck has a measly $2,510 left in SD Strong and $17,441.80 left in his candidate committee. So they each may have a few punches to throw in some of their favorite primary contests around the state. Let’s all watch closely on June 7 to see which lawyer from which “River”, West or East, can knock the most of his counter-ideologues out of the Legislature.

7 Comments

  1. Barry Muxen 2022-05-26

    Starting to eat their own. Gotta love it.

  2. Kurt Evans 2022-05-26

    Scott Odenbach and I lived on the study floor of Young Hall during our undergrad days at SDSU.

    Lee Schoenbeck’s biggest contribution to his authoritarian cronies is arbitrarily delaying Jason Ravnsborg’s senate trial an extra 50 days until after the primaries.

  3. John 2022-05-26

    Recall Odenbach’s initial campaign garbage, puffing about riding on the tractor listening to Russ Limbaugh’s trash about ‘Merica – convinced it was truth reincarnate. What a child. He allegedly was in Florida as a minor player helping to over-turn the Gore election. He apparently does not believe in democracy. He was counsel to Ravensborg – voting once for Ravensborg, then after being publicly called out, recused from the second vote. Odenbach acts like a Putin useful idiot: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tR_6dibpDfo

    Hopefully the primary voters will dump him. That’s why the district repubs ran a 3d candidate.

  4. Bob Newland 2022-05-26

    Oh, fer my Aunt Mary’s inedible cranberry pie!

    Well, if you’re cherry-picking the Republican turd bucket, you have to try to find the best turds

    But AL Novstrup? WTF?

  5. Arlo Blundt 2022-05-26

    There is not enough head room in the Capitol chambers for all the swollen melons on the Republican side.

  6. larry kurtz 2022-05-27

    Spearditch truly is the land of the flea and home of the grave.

    Rep. Odenbach said he supports it but believes video lootery is out of control in South Dakota and believes Mrs. Noem should release the flight logs pertinent to her campaign trips. He believes “crimes in Indian country are a scandal” and said he always looking for ways we can work with our “Indian brothers and sisters.” He said part of the problem is the overlapping of jurisdictions. Odenbach, also a lawyer who sits on the education and judiciary committees, said he gets a hundred emails a day about therapeutic cannabis.

    At least three tribal nations trapped in South Dakota are planning cannabis grow-ops so white people should quit whining and simply urge the nutbag legislature to legalize simple possession then get the hell out of their way.

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