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Birchy But Right: July 6 Rally to Call for Special Session on Eminent Domain Reform

A mostly anonymous group of right-wingers calling itself Landowners for Eminent Domain Reform has been promoting events protesting the use of eminent domain for carbon dioxide pipelines like the May 15 rally in Leola where Senator Al Novstrup said digital currency is more dangerous than temperature changes and the June 10 session in Aberdeen where Virginia lobbyist Tom DeWeese made multiple false statements about climate change. LEDR posts a poster for their events showing they have the support of the John Birch Society:

Landowners for Eminent Domain Reform, poster, FB 2023.06.06.
Landowners for Eminent Domain Reform, poster showing John Birch Society endorses their rallies, FB 2023.06.06.
I can’t let Novstrup’s and DeWeese’s and LEDR’s Birchy nutbirdiness (or LEDR’s gross misuse of a superscript 2 instead of a subscript 2 in the chemical symbol for carbon dioxide—these people can’t even get the little details of science right!) stop me from recognizing that they and South Dakota’s hard right are harder and more visibly than any left-wing groups to protect South Dakota property rights from the predations of the mainstream Republicans behind the Summit Carbon Solutions land grab.

Toward the end of cross-partisan comity and our shared interest in property rights, I note with favor LEDR’s upcoming rally at the Capitol in Pierre, the “Property Rights Round-Up“. Several legislators are hoping to draw a crowd to the Capitol steps on Thursday, July 6, at noon to join their call for a Special Session to address eminent domain. Governor Kristi Noem has said she supports landowners but can’t do anything to help them against the land-grabbing pipeliners who sponsored her inauguration, but she could in an instant convene the Special Session to reform eminent domain that Republican Representatives Jon Hansen, Karla Lems, and Brandi Schaefbauer are supporting.

The left isn’t all quiet on the eminent domain front—also supporting a Special Session is Democratic House Minority Leader Oren Lesmeister:

Democratic Rep. Oren Lesmeister, who represents northwestern South Dakota in the House, also believes a special session is needed.

“We’ve got people that have been there for centuries, I mean literally, and this is their livelihood, and they take personal pride in their property, personal property rights,” Lesmeister said. “And they’re being trampled on right now … and it is by law. That is one thing; they do have the right to survey. We’re not saying they don’t” [Dan Santella, “Hansen Calls for Special Session as CO2 Pipeline Surveying Continues,” KELO-TV, updated 2023.06.29].

Governor Noem tweeted yesterday that she’s leaving it up to legislators themselves to muster the two-thirds majorities from House and Senate to call themselves into Special Session:

Kristi Noem, tweet, 2023.06.28.
Kristi Noem, tweet, 2023.06.28.

Once again, Governor Noem says she’s “with the landowners and always have been“, but she’s not going to lift her pen to put her professed support into practical action. As she told landowner Jared Bossly, she’s not going to fight this battle for them.

Maybe the Governor needs to see a lot of Birchers and wingnuts and farmers and  Democrats and other people outside her office window on the Capitol steps at noon on July 6. Join the rally, call for the Special Session, and get Governor Noem and the Legislature to stand up for South Dakota property rights.


  1. larry kurtz 2023-06-29 09:15

    Watching the SDGOP disintegrating is a joy beyond measure.

  2. Bonnie B Fairbank 2023-06-29 10:37

    Will Kristi actually be in her office (not campaigning or “doing the Lew”) on July 6th? I can’t get the 25 second clip to run, but I suspect it’s my antidiluvian laptop’s fault. I don’t belong to Twitter, so watching it there ain’t gonna happen.

    Also, (meow) I note Kristi has updated her neck to the latest release of her face.

  3. All Mammal 2023-06-29 12:42

    Firstly- Mr. Deweese further proves what I have always felt about grown men with bangs. EBGB’s.
    Secondly- I’m sorry but it is hard to muster too much give a damn for this superficial call for a special session when about this same time last year half the population lost every ounce of personal property rights when our state government stole them from us, literally causing incontinence for some, and eventually death for others. So, I’d love to join up and raise hell, but where was yall when we needed that special session KN promised and never delivered?

  4. Arlo Blundt 2023-06-29 13:24

    Bonnie: I can’t get our Governor’s video to play on my laptop either though I am not burning to here her latest screed of double talking mendacity. She’s spending a lot of state money to say nothing.

  5. HydroGuy 2023-06-29 13:28

    Krusty is morphing into a living blow up doll one lip filler and botox injection at a time. Between that and the flamethrower, it’s no wonder the sexually repressed radical Republicans are aroused. Holy cow, there’s a million dollar idea!

  6. larry kurtz 2023-06-29 13:34

    Last week Sen. John Hoeven (R-ND) introduced a bill (S. 2041) that would give Congress the authority to approve the controversial transcontinental Keystone XL pipeline, without the President’s approval. Forty-four Republicans and three Democrats signed on as co-sponsors.
    According to MapLight, which analyzes industry campaign contributions to members of Congress, one of the top 12 funders supporting Hoeven’s bill is the John Birch Society, a conspiracy-minded network that led Red-baiting campaigns in the 1950s, organized against the civil rights movement in the 1960s, and recently has raised its ugly head to crush collective bargaining in Wisconsin and elsewhere.

  7. larry kurtz 2023-06-29 13:43

    The Southern Poverty Law Center, which fights racial injustice and monitors hate groups, considers the John Birch Society an anti-government “patriot” group. When the ICLEI membership raised concern in council chambers, the Human Rights Network linked the outcry to the John Birch Society and a fall speaking tour in Montana by Tom DeWeese, a leading critic of Agenda 21. Agenda 21 is a United Nations roadmap of sorts to sustainability, but its detractors see sustainability as a trap of “radical environmentalists” and a threat to private property rights.

  8. cibvet 2023-06-29 16:43

    Kristi says college entrance should be based on merit, but
    says nothing about diplomas should be awarded on merit.
    I guess degrees and nepotistic jobs is a step to far for merit.

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