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Greens Petitioning for Official Party Status in South Dakota, Need to Speed Up Signature Collection

The Green Party is circulating a petition to win official political party status in South Dakota. To place any candidates on South Dakota’s general election ballot in 2024, budding Greens must submit a petition with the signatures of at least 3,502 registered South Dakota voters to the Secretary of State by July 1, 2024. State law would then give the Greens the right to nominate Presidential electors, statewide candidates, and Congressional and Legislative candidates at convention by August 13, 2024.

Richard Winger of Ballot Access News reported last October that the Green Party had begun circulating its party petition and already had 1,000 signatures. The Green Party SD ballot access webpage and a GPSD FB post from last Wednesday claim that the Greens need 2,000 more signatures to qualify for party status, meaning that they have about 1,500 signatures in hand. Those figures suggest that in the last eleven months, the Greens have collected 500 signatures, or an average of 1.5 signatures per day.

The Green Party SD events webpage shows one signature push scheduled for the weekend of September 23–24 at “multiple spots throughout Rapid City.” Party petition signatures expire after one year, so if the Greens don’t submit before October 1, two thirds of the signatures they have right now will become worthless, and they’ll need to collect another 1,000 before next July. To ensure that a party petition drive doesn’t lost any signatures to the one-year expiration date, a party needs to collect an average of 10 signatures per day.

In a Thursday FB post, the Green Party South Dakota Ballot Access Committee criticized Governor Kristi Noem for alleging that drug cartels are using South Dakota’s Indian reservations as bases of operations to escape state jurisdiction and supply most of the illegal drugs in the Midwest. The GPSDBAC also criticized South Dakota Democrats for saying nothing about Noem’s statements:

To insinuate or hint that these sovereign Nations might be complicit in drug trafficking is a direct affront to them as members of tribal nations and as residents of South Dakota.

The two-party system must be dismantled to ensure that the voices of EVERY resident in South Dakota are not only heard but also accorded the respect they deserve. This is why we are pushing for full ballot access in South Dakota.

The era of Republicans and Democrats monopolizing our state has concluded. The moment has arrived to communicate to every politician that failing to uphold Tribal sovereignty is a breach of their oath to safeguard the US Constitution, which unequivocally declares in Article VI, Section 2 that “all treaties are the supreme law of the land.”

Respect tribal sovereignty or we will elect someone else! [South Dakota Green Party BAC, FB post, 2023.08.31]

The main fallacy in the Greens’ claim here is that Republicans and Democrats are monopolizing South Dakota. Republicans are monopolizing state politics; Democrats are failing to mount an effective opposition to that monopoly. Republicans have already dismantled the two-party system and imposed a generation of one-party rule; the field is open for any party—Democratic, Libertarian, No Labels, or Greens—to step into the gap and establish an effective second party.

As always, I welcome more parties to take the civic stage and fight for social justice in opposition to South Dakota’s oppressive one-party regime. But the Green Party needs to accelerate its signature drive and submit its petition soon to avoid wasting the hundreds of signatures it apparently collected last year in its quest for official party status.

5 Comments

  1. Donald Pay 2023-09-03

    Not a fan of the Green Party. Not really a fan of the Democratic Party, either, but the reality is we face a fascist threat, and I’ll vote for the persons who have the best shot at keeping that fascist threat out of office. I can’t see Green Party candidates as being a realistic choice in that regard.

    I read a lot of history on the period between WWI and WWII, the period for the rise of fascism. There were two main political reasons for that rise: the cowardice of conservative parties, institutions, and elected leaders and the splitting up of governing coalitions consisting of left to center parties. In the face of fascism (which is what the Donald Trump/America First movement is) we can’t afford to be splitting the vote. If we do, fascism takes over the country and there will be no elections for a long time.

    Another thing that bothers me about the Green Party is they are not really serious. In 2002 the Green Party of Minnesota endorsed a man for Senate to run against Sen. Paul Wellstone. That man was part of the sewage ash scam in South Dakota, and had carted sewage ash to his land on the Pine Ridge Reservation. My ex-wife and I had to get involved to end his campaign. After that I will have nothing to do with the Greens.

  2. O 2023-09-03

    What faction of the GOP (because SD is a one-party state) are the Greens looking to pull away from the flock? Are there GOP voters who have deep environmental concerns, but stick with the GOP for other reasons? That is really my first thought in any meaningful opposition to GOP rule, what issue will cause the cleave with the “big tent?” Farmers all see themselves as billionaires (in the making), so seem more influenced by tax policy — not labor policy. Many laborers are drawn into the culture war issues — not bread-and-butter issues that affect their ability to earn and be safe in their workplace.

  3. grudznick 2023-09-03

    Since the Republicans have achieved their goal, what do you think is next? I suspect some group like the Conservatives with Common Sense, or the Sons of Silence, will usurp one of these parties and instill a new regime outside of Slaight-Hansen and her ilk.

  4. Shaun Little Horn 2023-09-07

    Thank you for sharing the article. To clarify, the South Dakota Green Party has collected over 3,500 signatures. The additional 2,000 are a buffer to guarantee they meet the required total, even if some signatures are deemed invalid.

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