Release: Who’s the Real Republican? Casey Murschel Claps Back at Jon Hansen’s Gatekeeping

Who’s the Real Republican? Casey Murschel Claps Back at Jon Hansen’s Gatekeeping

Supporting Freedom Amendment G is True GOP – SDSU Poll Shows 77% of Voters, Including 66% of Republicans, Say No to Forcing Rape Victims to Give Birth, Which is Current Law in SD

Sioux Falls, SD…Former Republican State Representative and chair of the newly formed Republicans for Freedom Amendment G, Casey Murschel, today released the following statement in reply to Representative Jon Hansen who charged in a statement emailed to South Dakota media yesterday that Murschel “might be registered ‘Republican’” but is “as much of a far left liberal as it gets.”

Statement by Casey Murschel:

“Right to Life official and State Legislator Jon Hansen says he represents all Republicans when he says South Dakota’s total abortion ban must stand and charges that I am not a real Republican.

Who put Jon Hansen in charge of deciding who is Republican enough? I don’t recall the voter registration form asking if Jon Hansen gave me permission to register as a Republican. I am not claiming to speak for all Republicans. Our intention as Republicans for Freedom Amendment G is to show how Freedom Amendment G is consistent with Republican support for smaller government and individual liberty. We reject the current ban and the extremist view that women who have been raped should be required by law to give birth. That is not the view of most real Republicans.

I and my group, Republicans for Freedom Amendment G, intend to prove that the numerous surveys showing large majorities of Republicans nationwide and here in South Dakota are against requiring a woman who has been raped to give birth, and are in favor of a more moderate Restore Roe approach, are accurate and reflect the real Republicanism in which I and they believe. We shall see, in the campaign on Freedom Amendment G, and in the election returns this November, which of us better understands and represents what South Dakota Republicans, and particularly Republican women, really want.”

SDSU December 2023 Poll on Abortion

Libertarian Party of South Dakota Nominates Candidates and Affirms Ballot Issue Positions

Libertarian Party of South Dakota Nominates Candidates and Affirms Ballot Issue Positions

PIERRE, S.D. – The Libertarian Party of South Dakota gathered for its annual convention Saturday in Pierre. The convention marked a significant moment for the party as they nominated several candidates and took official stances on November’s ballot issues.

Gideon Oakes of Keystone was nominated for the S.D. Public Utilities Commission, while Josh Dennert and Tamara Lesnar were nominated for District 1 House seats, and Greg Zimmerman for District 8 House.

“We are thrilled to nominate such dedicated individuals who embody our values of individual liberty and limited government,” said Tracey Quint-Isburg, State Chair of the Libertarian Party of South Dakota.

Oakes, 39, is a Keystone-area business owner and volunteer EMT who has worked in the technology and logistics sectors throughout much of his career. He and his wife, Mary, have three children.

He said his candidacy offers voters a better choice for an office he believes desperately needs a fresh perspective.

“The three current commissioners have a combined tenure of 48 years — almost half a century,” Oakes said. “I think most South Dakotans believe elected office should be a calling, not a career.”

Oakes further differentiated his candidacy by pointing out his Republican opponent’s history as an advisor to Xcel Energy immediately prior to being appointed to the PUC in 2011, as well as his Democratic opponent’s support of Biden Administration policies.

“The question voters get to decide is whether they want a commissioner that represents the utility industry, one that represents big government, or one that represents the people,” Oakes said.

Oakes said his top priorities as a PUC commissioner will be encouraging the security and redundancy of utility infrastructure components, continuing expansion of access to terrestrial broadband and being a staunch advocate for utility customers and landowners.

“South Dakotans are resilient. Our infrastructure should be as well,” Oakes said. “From day one, I will work with our utility providers to help ensure that we can always rely on critical services in the times we need them the most.”

In addition to nominating candidates, the LPSD also took official positions on several upcoming ballot measures, including voicing opposition to Amendment H, which would restructure South Dakota’s elections in a manner similar to California’s top-two primary system.

The party also took a stance supporting the repeal of SB 201, highlighting their continued opposition to eminent domain for private commercial gain. On the issue of recreational marijuana, the party declared its support for IM29, emphasizing personal freedom and the economic benefits of legalization.

“The LPSD remains committed to advancing policies that promote individual freedom and fiscal responsibility,” added Quint-Isburg. “We believe our positions reflect the values and priorities of South Dakotans who want a government that respects personal liberty.”

For more information on the Libertarian Party of South Dakota, please visit https://lpsouthdakota.org. Learn more about Gideon Oakes at https://electoakes.com.

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Congressman Dusty Johnson’s Weekly Column: Merrick Garland’s Contempt for Congress

Merrick Garland’s Contempt for Congress
By Congressman Dusty Johnson

I joined Governor Noem for her Tribal Public Safety Crisis Summit on Monday for a conversation to find solutions to the violent crime crisis on Indian reservations. Local Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) agents were participating in the event but were told by Department of Justice (DOJ) officials that they could not be at the summit if I was present. Attorney General (AG) Merrick Garland’s Deputy gave this directive. Garland’s rules and regulations prevent FBI officials from having policy conversations with members of Congress outside the DOJ’s official briefing process. In obedience to their boss, these local FBI officials drove circles around the block and hid in the hallway until I left the building. This was absurd.

The purpose of Governor Noem’s summit was to bring federal, state, local, and tribal community leaders under one roof to discuss ways we can work together to ensure tribal law enforcement officers have the resources needed to stop violent crime and protect those living on reservations. Indian country is in a public safety crisis. Between 2022 and 2023, violent crime rates on the Cheyenne River Reservation increased 55%, while Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate and Lower Brule Sioux Tribe both saw an increase of more than 30%. People are dying. The federal government is failing Indian country, and we must do better.

Throughout my time in Congress, I have been an advocate for more federal dollars to be allocated to tribal law enforcement agencies. I commend Governor Noem for organizing and hosting this summit and look forward to turning the tides towards safer communities on our Indian reservations. We need to work together to find solutions, but we can’t do that if we can’t all come to the table.

For some reason, the FBI agents could brief the Governor, local law enforcement, South Dakota’s Attorney General, tribes, and my own staff, but not a sitting member of Congress. Garland’s out-of-touch rules and regulations from bureaucrats prevent progress and innovation from happening at the local level. I sent a letter to AG Garland requesting an explanation for the FBI’s refusal to brief the room while I was there. We need addition and multiplication, not subtraction and division. Preventing myself or the FBI from being at the table simultaneously does a tremendous disservice to all who attended, those in Indian country, and the people of South Dakota.

AG Garland’s policies resulted in a ridiculous display on Monday. I hope his unreasonable DOJ policies are stripped soon, so we can keep our citizens safe.

Shad Olson moves closer to trial for aggravated domestic abuse/strangulation

The Shad Olson S**t Show looks like his court case will continue though at least August, as motions were granted in the case this week:

He is charged with domestic abuse aggravated assault/strangulation, for an incident in February of this year.

and..

The judge granted all motions heard including a motion of discovery for tangible evidence, a motion to disclose witnesses, a motion for expert testimony, and a motion for investigation.

Read the story here on KOTA News

Governor Kristi Noem’s Weekly Column: Keeping South Dakota Ag on Offense


Keeping South Dakota Ag on Offense

By: Governor Kristi Noem
June 21, 2024

Farmers are some of the biggest gamblers I know. They go to a bank, borrow money to buy land – borrow more money to buy equipment. Then they go back and get an operating note so they can buy seed, fertilizer, and chemical. And then they bury it all in the dirt. They pray that it might rain, that something might grow, and that they’ll have something to sell so that they can pay back those loans.

But if we didn’t have people willing to make that gamble, then families across the country and around the world wouldn’t have food to put on the table. 

Their work is not easy – and we have so much appreciation for our ag producers.

Agriculture is South Dakota’s most important industry for good reason. We feed the world. We have more cows-per-person than any state. I am tremendously proud of that fact. About 95% of South Dakota farms are still family-owned and operated. Ag contributes more than $32 billion to our state’s economy – about 30% of our economic output. 

When ag prospers, South Dakota prospers; when droughts hit or markets slide, everyone feels that, too.

Thankfully, South Dakota’s economy is booming. But we are not leaving ag behind in all this growth. My Governor’s Office of Economic Development has identified Precision Ag and Value-Added Ag as key sectors of our economy to grow and develop. Our Dairy industry
is one of South Dakota’s fastest-growing economic engines. And with new food production coming in, like the state-of-the-art Asian food production plant that Schwan’s is building in Sioux Falls, we are not slowing down.

With all the growth we have seen, it is vital that we keep farmers farming. My team is constantly focusing on ag’s growth – asking questions like what’s the next opportunity, the next innovation, the next risk to take? 

We want to keep South Dakota ag on offense. And to do that, I’m happy to play defense wherever necessary.

Attacks on Ag are coming from both within and from outside of our nation. The Biden Administration seems determined to put as much red tape and regulations in our producers’ way as possible. I have testified against such regulations in front of Congress, and I am working to challenge whatever unconstitutional regulations the Biden Administration puts in our way.

We decided a long time ago that it is important that we grow our own food in this country – that we have a diverse, safe food supply that provides for our people without undue foreign interference. So we are defending South Dakota ag from undue foreign influence.  

This past legislative session, I signed legislation to protect South Dakota ag land from being purchased by six “Evil Foreign Governments” and their agents. The Chinese Communist Party has increased their holdings of American ag land by more than 5000% in the last 10 years. These Communist dictators are not our friends. They are not our allies. They should not be our neighbors.

My dad always told me, “Kristi, God’s not making any more land.” In a lot of ways, our land is our most precious asset, and we should encourage one another to be visionary about protecting our farms. We shouldn’t be selling that asset to nations that hate us – and now we have the laws in place to stop that from happening.

Ag is so important to our economy, and it’s also important to the future of our nation. South Dakota will continue to focus on how to keep ag growing and thriving for the future.

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Congressman Dusty Johnson’s weekly column: Planning a Trip to D.C.

Planning a Trip to D.C.
By Rep. Dusty Johnson
June 21, 2024

It’s almost the 4th of July, which is one of the best times to visit our nation’s capital. Washington, D.C. has endless activities. From checking out any of the more than 80 museums, attending a major league sports game, or visiting some of the most famous memorials, there is something for everyone. If you’re planning a trip to visit D.C. this summer, here are a few things to remember to have a fun and memorable trip.

If you are planning a visit, a Capitol Tour is a must-do. For assistance booking tours of the Capitol, White House, FBI Building, and Supreme Court, call my office at (202) 225-2801or visit my website dustyjohnson.house.gov. All tours are first come, first served, so be sure to reserve as soon as possible.

The city is filled with iconic landmarks everywhere you go. As you walk down the National Mall or downtown streets, you’ll see monuments, memorials, and statues honoring influential Americans throughout history. If you are interested in theater, you’re in luck! D.C is home to more than 13 iconic theatres, like the Kennedy Center and Ford’s Theatre. Tickets are available throughout the summer for many famous performances.

While I’m in D.C. for work, I often don’t have time to see the sights, but in April, I visited the American History Museum with my family, gave them a tour of a Capitol, and rode scooters down the National Mall. We all had a great time.

They don’t call D.C. “the Swamp” for no reason. Summers are hot and humid, so before you pack your bags, check the weather forecast for your trip so you can pack properly. Remember to stay hydrated and bring an umbrella for those unexpected afternoon thunderstorms.

To see a full list of landmarks, museums, and activities to check out while visiting, look under “services” on my website, linked here. Feel free to contact my office with questions. I hope to see you out here!

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Attorney General Jackley Joins State Attorneys General Opposing Gag Order Against Former President Trump

Attorney General Jackley Joins State Attorneys General Opposing Gag Order Against Former President Trump

PIERRE, S.D. – South Dakota Attorney General Marty Jackley announces that he has joined a 24-state coalition urging the courts to deny a Special Prosecutor’s request for a gag order against former President Trump.

The Special Prosecutor has requested a gag order that prohibits former President Trump from criticizing the raid of his Mar-a-Lago home. The states argue that the gag order is unclear, infringes on former President Trump’s free speech rights, and interferes with American voters’ rights to hear what their candidate has to say leading into an election.

 “In all my years as a U.S. Attorney, South Dakota Attorney General, and State’s Attorney, I have never asked for a gag order on any defendant regardless of what a defendant said about me or the process,” said Attorney General Jackley. “We don’t do this in America — it’s called free speech and free elections.”

Other Attorney Generals joining the coalition are from: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

Read the full amicus brief here. 

Rounds Launches Effort to Get Mandatory Country of Origin Labeling for Beef in the Farm Bill


Rounds Launches Effort to Get Mandatory Country of Origin Labeling for Beef in the Farm Bill

Asks Senate Colleagues to Join Him, Deadline to Sign is June 24

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today launched a nationwide effort to support American farmers and ranchers by including Mandatory Country of Origin Labeling (MCOOL) in the 2024 Farm Bill.

As the deadline for the Farm Bill approaches on September 30, different policy frameworks have been unveiled by each party in both the House and the Senate, with the House framework already having passed through the House Agriculture Committee. Producers from South Dakota and across the nation have expressed strong support for including a MCOOL solution in the Farm Bill.  

 MCOOL was originally passed in the 2002 Farm Bill but then repealed in 2015 by Congress due to Canada and Mexico filing disputes with the World Trade Organization. A report done before the 2015 repeal showed 90% of consumers favored requiring food sellers to indicate on the package label the country of origin of fresh meat.

A majority of products imported into the United States have to disclose the item’s country of origin to the consumer. Currently, country of origin labeling laws apply to agricultural food products like lamb, goat, chicken, venison, wild and farm-raised fish and shellfish, fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables, peanuts, pecans, macadamia nuts and ginseng.

Rounds is inviting Senate colleagues to join his letter to the Senate Agriculture Committee requesting that they add MCOOL to the framework for the 2024 Farm Bill. Rounds is also requesting that farm and ranch advocacy groups call on their Senators to join him on this effort. The deadline to sign on to the letter is June 24.

“It is past time to reinstate mandatory country of origin labeling for beef,” said Rounds. “U.S. farmers and ranchers work hard to produce high-quality products for their fellow Americans. They deserve to have their beef differentiated from foreign-made product. Consumers want to be able to purchase beef born, raised and processed in the United States without wondering if it’s secretly coming from a foreign country. I encourage my colleagues to join me in the fight to get MCOOL included in our next farm bill.” 

BACKGROUND:

Rounds has been a vocal supporter of MCOOL since he first started in the Senate in 2015. Rounds also led the congressional effort to close the ‘Product of USA’ labeling loophole. He first introduced legislation in October 2019 that would make certain the ‘Product of USA’ label is only applied to beef products born, raised and slaughtered in the United States. Following years of work, in March 2024, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) finalized a rule defining that the “Product of USA” or “Made in the USA” labels can only be applied to meat, poultry and egg products that are born, raised, slaughtered and processed in the United States.

Read the full text of the letter below.

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Dear Chairwoman Stabenow and Ranking Member Boozman:

American farmers and ranchers produce the highest quality beef products in the world. Consumers and producers across the nation recognize this fact and are in search of additional market integrity. Therefore, we believe it is past time to reinstate mandatory country of origin labeling (MCOOL) for beef. As the Senate Agriculture Committee develops a new Farm Bill, we believe it is necessary to work towards a feasible MCOOL solution.

For almost a century, U.S. trade law has required the majority of imported products to bear a country of origin label. Americans recognize the clear benefits of consumer labeling laws and regularly use this information when making important purchasing decisions. Yet as you know, a number of agricultural commodities have been excluded from country of origin labeling requirements. In response, a broad coalition of producer and consumer groups worked to incorporate retail-level MCOOL in the 2002 Farm Bill.

Following the successful implementation of MCOOL, producers and consumers enjoyed a short-lived period of marketplace transparency. This change applied the same country of origin labeling standards to beef as the majority of other consumer goods sold in America. Unfortunately, a coalition of large meatpacking companies and foreign beef interests worked to repeal MCOOL. After Canada and Mexico filed a dispute with the World Trade Organization (WTO), Congress officially rescinded the law in 2015.

Since the repeal of MCOOL, American cattle producers have experienced significant market fluctuations. Concurrently, the largest meat packers have realized immense profits through the use of forward contracting and formula-based sales. While cattle prices are currently on the rise, it is evident producers will again encounter market disruptions. As farmers and ranchers deal with a volatile market, it is imperative the federal government work to provide a level playing field. This can be achieved through supporting additional transparency in our beef labeling system.

Our American farmers and ranchers work hard to provide the safest and best tasting beef in the world. Producers of foreign beef should not receive an unfair advantage when engaging in our domestic markets, especially as our competitors do not always meet American animal health and consumer safety standards. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s recent “Product of the USA” final rulemaking is a step in the right direction, but there is more work to be done.

Without a reasonable solution to the MCOOL question, hardworking American farmers and ranchers will continue to be put at a disadvantage. It is our hope Congress will use the Farm Bill to address this pressing issue. This would entail using the legislation to require U.S. trade leaders to develop a WTO compliant means of reimplementing MCOOL.

Thank you for your consideration. We look forward to working with you as we move closer to finalizing the upcoming Farm Bill.

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