Noem: Keystone XL Opens Opportunities for South Dakota

Noem: Keystone XL Opens Opportunities for South Dakota

Washington, D.C. – Rep. Kristi Noem today issued the following statement, after President Trump issued a presidential permit to approve construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline:

“Access to energy is central to improving our national security and building a more robust economy that offers better jobs and higher wages.  Not only does the Keystone XL Pipeline offer these large-scale benefits for our country, its construction will translate into added revenue for cash-strapped South Dakota counties, relief on our roads and rails, and job opportunities for folks across our state. I’m glad to see President Trump move forward on this critical piece of American infrastructure.” 

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Statement From Gov. Daugaard On Keystone XL

Statement From Gov. Daugaard On Keystone XL

PIERRE, S.D. – Gov. Dennis Daugaard issued the following statement today in response to the State Department’s issuance of a permit for construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline.

“I welcome the administration’s approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline. This is a victory for all of us who rely on oil to heat our homes, fuel our cars, and power our tractors, and pipelines are the safest and most efficient way to transport oil. I recognize that some South Dakotans will not celebrate this news, and I respect that perspective. I hope we will all seek to exercise our First Amendment rights peacefully, and respect the right of others to do likewise.”

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Thune Applauds Keystone XL Pipeline Permitting

Thune Applauds Keystone XL Pipeline Permitting

 “This is one more step in a joint effort between Congress and the administration to pursue policies that encourage job creation and economic growth.” 

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) today issued the following statement after President Trump issued a permit authorizing construction of the Keystone XL pipeline: 

“After delaying the common-sense, shovel-ready Keystone XL pipeline for eight years, the Obama administration put politics ahead of job creation and energy development,” said Thune. “I’m glad President Trump took quick action to approve this critical infrastructure project. This is one more step in a joint effort between Congress and the administration to pursue policies that encourage job creation and economic growth.

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Democrats trying to create their own hype. Good luck with that one.

From Facebook, South Dakota Democrats are promoting a news article that attempts to point out how people are interested in running:

And if you click on the link… it has absolutely nothing to do with South Dakota.  And on top of that, the author of the article, Alex Seitz-Wald, has been cited by at least one website as a friendly reporter where Democrats “planted” articles favorable to themselves.

In South Dakota over the past several election cycles, Democrat’s main problems electorally have been of their own doing. Instead of devoting resources into party building, voter registration, and recruitment, they’ve been dumping tens of thousands of dollars into petition registration drives that have provided no discernable benefit to voter registration or candidate recruitment.

In fact, the past several cycles have proven to be among their lowest water marks in a half-century. The party is life support from the national party in terms of funding, at the same time while they maintain a staff that accomplishes little else but an occasional snarky press release.

Further crippling the party is an odd 4-year election cycle for chair, which has them forced to remain under the yoke of Ann Tornberg, who drove the party to record low numbers in the prior election.

Tornberg fared poorly – hitting a 50 year low for state democrat numbers in elections – against a GOP organization in 2016 which had focused much of it’s efforts into defeating a couple of ballot measures which threatened to remove party label from the ballot. A measure favored by some Democrats that they believed might improve their electability by hiding the fact they were Democrats, but in practice, is less than a success.

In 2018, as opposed to facing a GOP focusing on ballot measures, Tornburg will be facing a GOP led by her nemesis, former State Senator Dan Lederman.  In past legislative elections, Tornburg both ran directly against Lederman in the Senate, as well as against house members strongly supported by Lederman. In every case, Tornburg was trounced, and turned away from the ballot box.

Now, a damaged liberal political party at historic lows led by Tornburg is facing a newly re-energized and active GOP led by Lederman, who has made grassroots activism and party building a priority.

Observers may have to avert their eyes, as the battle may be quite lopsided, and not very pretty.

Erickson decides against Mayoral run!

One of the GOP’s marquee stars in Sioux Falls announced today that she’s taking a pass at running for the Mayoral seat in 2018. From the Argus Leader:

“I looked at my kids and thought, ‘They like you right now.’ I mean, Mom’s pretty cool at this point. They like hanging out with Mom. I just didn’t feel like I could give that up and lose that time with them at such a critical age.”

Erickson explored the possibility of a mayoral run for much of the past year, getting a team in place and speaking to supporters. She is 3-0 in past campaigns and has shown a knack for raising money, with her famous brother serving as secret weapon for special events.

Her decision is likely good news for her former city council colleague Greg Jamison, who has not formally declared his mayoral candidacy but is expected to announce after he concludes session duties as District 12 state House representative.

Read it all here.

That’s too bad, as Christine would have been formidable.  But, there’s still a lot of time between now and the election.

Thune Questions Agriculture Secretary Nominee Sonny Perdue

Thune Questions Agriculture Secretary Nominee Sonny Perdue

“These are tough times in agriculture … I look forward to working with you on the next farm bill as well as continuing to implement this one.”

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), a member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Forestry, and Nutrition, today questioned former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue, President Trump’s nominee to be secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In the hearing, Thune received Perdue’s commitment to work with Thune on the current and future farm bills, national forest management, and ensuring there is a strong renewable fuel standard. 

“These are tough times in agriculture,” said Thune. “We’ve got commodity prices and livestock prices below the cost of production, uncertainty about trade, concerns about disease, and two crop years left in terms of implementation of this farm bill before we start writing a new one. I look forward to working with you on the next farm bill as well as continuing to implement this one.” 

Thune later joked with Perdue, an avid outdoorsman, that “we won’t have any problem getting you to come to South Dakota as long as we still have pheasants … so I expect you to be there.”

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Senator Thune: Staying Ahead of New Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities

Staying Ahead of New Cybersecurity Vulnerabilities

“While there is no silver-bullet solution to cybersecurity risks, I believe promoting public-private partnerships on risk management, foundational research, and a robust cyber workforce are essential to combating these challenges.”

WASHINGTON — U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, today led a hearing entitled “The Promises and Perils of Emerging Technologies for Cybersecurity.” The hearing explored the impact of emerging technologies – including artificial intelligence, the internet of things, blockchain, and quantum computing – on the future of cybersecurity.

“Our nation faces an array of evolving cyber threats to our personal data, access to online services, and critical infrastructure,” said Thune “To be clear, cybersecurity is not solely a technology issue. Also, while there is no silver-bullet solution to cybersecurity risks, I believe promoting public-private partnerships on risk management, foundational research, and a robust cyber workforce are essential to combating these challenges. That is why I am excited to continue our committee’s discussion on cybersecurity by looking toward the future.”  

Thune noted that he would send letters to Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross and Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao urging them to prioritize the cybersecurity of federal systems. He is also working with a bipartisan group of senators on potential legislation to ensure that small businesses fully benefit from the National Institute of Standards and Technology Cybersecurity Framework. 

In 2014, Thune co-sponsored the Cybersecurity Enhancement Act, which included important provisions for cybersecurity research, workforce development, and standards. The bill authorized, among other things, the National Science Foundation’s successful CyberCorps Scholarship Program, in which Dakota State University is an active participant.

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The “I can’t keep up with all the new candidates” edition of the 2018 GOP Candidate Chart

It seems that it’s getting hard to keep up with the players with three new candidates being thrown into the mix this week, and a couple of AG Candidates confirming speculation.

Who’s new? Dr. Terry LaFleur for Governor (who will probably not make the ballot, but more power to him), Josh Haeder for Treasurer, and a new candidate for Treasurer that multiple sources are telling me he’s in the hunt.

(Man, those Lincoln Day Dinners are looking longer and longer all the time!)