There’s been some mention of the importance of the vote for Kristi Noem for Governor on the basis that the person who takes that seat in January will be making at least two appointments to the South Dakota State Supreme Court in their first term of office.
Those appointments are set to come due as a result of State Supreme Court Justices set to matriculate out of office due to the mandatory age limit of 70 placed upon them under South Dakota law. I spoke to one pundit about that, and they wryly noted that it could be important if you’re concerned about alienation of affection and estate matters being heard, but most are not too worried about it.
More importantly, the election matters because of other aspects of the Governor’s power of appointment. And it mattered 18 times under the supervision of Governor Daugaard:
|Date of Appointment||District||Name||Chamber||Replaced||Party|
In each and every instance, Republican Governor Daugaard appointed a Republican to assume the seat.
Had the chief executive for the State of South Dakota been a Democrat, make no mistake, that would have been reflected at the time of the appointment, which could have had some significant consequences for the balance of power in the State Legislature.
The choices for Republicans this election shouldn’t be predicated solely on what ‘could’ happen with the next Governor and how they exercise the power of appointment.
But it is a good illustration of the fact that elections have consequences.