Judge denies motion to remove Lance Russell from ballot

I’m hearing that the challenge to State Senator Lance Russell being placed on the ballot was successfully defended. I’m told that the Judge gave ruling and denied Jim Sword’s request.

Stay tuned for more on this..

Update – I’m hearing that in denying the application for a writ of prohibition, the judge relied on the GOP successfully arguing SDCL12-6-64. What does that say?

12-6-64.   Liberal construction of primary election laws. The laws of this state pertaining to primary elections shall be liberally construed so that the real will of the voters may not be defeated by a mere technicality.

Read that here.

30 Replies to “Judge denies motion to remove Lance Russell from ballot”

    1. Bennett

      Right, because the will of the voters is everything. If we thought like that, we’d still have IM 22. But hey, this time it’s a republican, so who cares about rules, right?

      1. duggersd

        IM 22 was ruled to be unconstitutional in part. It had to be repealed. Constitutionality is there to preserve the rights of the minority as well.

        1. Anonymous

          NO IT WASN’T! IM22 had an injunction to delay it’s implementation so that it could be reviewed for constitutionality but it was removed before it could be determined. In fact, it also had a severability clause so that if parts were found to be unconstitutional, they could be removed while implementing the rest. Just because the GOP and their lemmings keep trying to tell people it was unconstitutional doesn’t make it so. They undid the will of the people based on their own opinions.

          1. William Beal

            “The Court orders that there is no severability and Initiated Measure 22 is preliminarily enjoined in its entirety.

            The Court has presented a detailed Order stopping Initiated Measure 22 from taking effect based on various provisions of the South Dakota Constitution. The Court further determined it would not be appropriate to leave only part of the Initiated Measure in effect since it was a comprehensive package.

            The court is not allowed to look at motives or wisdom of the act; only its constitutionality. While I.M. 22 is all about good intent, it lacks careful constitutional draftsmanship.”


  1. Troy Jones

    Liberty Dick,

    Your comment sounds like a liberal promoting the idea judges can/should invent the law to accommodate their judgment of the “will of the people.”

    I find that position and attitude a dangerous threat to our civil liberties and the rule of law. We need judges to interpret the law without regard to the politics/will of the people. We have a mechanism to legally have the will of the people represented and it isn’t the courts. It is through the legislative process or initiative/referrendum process. NOT THE COURTS.

    That said, I’ve always thought the law clearly was:

    A candidate couldn’t FORMALLY/LEGALLY (big distinction vs. campaign) be a candidate for two offices at the same time. Thus, Lance had to withdraw from the Senate race prior to allowing his name placed into nomination (which he did).

    This withdrawal created a vacancy under which there was a procedure to fill the vacancy. This was done and they selected Lance as was their prerogative.

    Judge ruled according to the law as I read it. Of course, I’m not a lawyer and don’t understand precedent and other such matters so it is possible the proper ruling could have been different UNDER THE LAW. But, unless the matter is appealed further, it appears the judges ruling (and my understanding) stands and Lance will properly be on the ballot.

    1. Anonymous

      It sounds to me like he made a clear reference to the statute explicitly mentioned in the Judge’s ruling, but ok.

    2. Anonymous


      That’s a very dickish interpretation of the law. By dickish I mean liberal.

      Why the heck do we make laws for elections if everything is liberally construed by judges? There are no checks and balances on campaign finances or penalties for people violating statutes.

      It’s why no one ever gets kicked off the ballot for violating rules that we are all supposed to follow because a judge will just say “will of the voters” “liberal interpretation of the laws”

      Bad deal. conservatives might be happy to have Russell but conservatives should be concerned by this judge.

      1. Anonymous

        If anyone would like to ask why these laws are in place, contact Justin Bell or Dan Lederman since they are the ones that made the argument to keep Russell.

    3. Sioux Fu Frank

      Troy Jones,
      John Thune was term limited out by South Dakota’s current state constitution, and ineligible to run his last race. That didn’t stop establishment sycophants like you from pushing him.

      So please, stuff your hypocrisy.

  2. Anonymous

    If the will of the voters were to include nominating a candidate who has reached the limits of a term, doesn’t live in the district, or is not a citizen of the USA, would their will also prevail?
    Does the will of the voters trump everything else?

    1. Anonymous

      SDCL 12-6-64: Liberal construction of primary election laws. The laws of this state pertaining to primary elections shall be liberally construed so that the real will of the voters may not be defeated by a mere technicality.

      In Russell’s case there’s no technicality because the law is technically on his side, and in general the circumstances you list list probably wouldn’t qualify as technicalities.

  3. Anonymous

    It just looks bad that Russell runs for multiple races, drops out of one and loses the other one. Yet he gets come back into things the same year. He should have had to sit this one out for the next 2 years or so.
    Russell is your typical career politician that adds not value to the position he is elected to.

      1. Pondering

        I did NOT say that. Someone is using my nom de plume. Not that its trademarked of anything. Its just rude.

  4. The Sicilian Defense

    The upholding of the Russell nomination makes it more likely that the Partridge gambit (he wrote the so called “loyalty letters”) will fail.

  5. grudznick

    Well this is good news for Mr. Nelson, indeed. He will still be able to have his words whispered to him, and his positions figured out by the bald little elephant with the pinned on ball-sack sitting next to him.


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