The Rapid City Journal has an interesting article asking 12 legislators a few questions. Here is one of the questions and a response.
Q. What do your constituents want from you during this session that may be different than in previous years?
Rep. Kristen Conzet: I have heard from people throughout the state that are frustrated and disappointed with the manner in which a handful of statewide groups and elected/formerly elected officials have conducted themselves prior, during and after campaigns. There now is an unseemly and unaccountable fashion of doing business by making threats and stating flat-out
lies, while embracing the ideal of “guilty until you prove your innocence.” Words are being published and blogged that have absolutely no factual evidence behind them. Corruption, uninformed, nondisclosure, liar, lack of honesty are a few of the accusations, not to mention the verbiage from public figures and
groups on the blogs that are verbally abusive. And in the end when the crowds have cleared and the shouting has ceased the accusers are not held accountable for their false statements.
Conzet makes a good point. There has been a flurry of unsubstantiated personal attacks. When making accusations, it is important for them to be backed up with specifics and facts. Character assassination should not be a substitute for public discussion. There is a range of opinion on many topics within the Republican party, and purging everyone who disagrees with “me” would leave a party of one.