And the money starts flowing in.
Out of state group ‘Open Primaries’ is apparently sending a pile of cash to its South Dakota allies who want to prevent independents and third party candidates from making it to the November ballot by eliminating them in the June primary:
A national nonprofit has pledged $140,000 to help supporters of a constitutional amendment that would move South Dakota to an open primary system for many races.
New York-based Open Primaries spokesman Jeremy Gruber said Tuesday that the group is supporting the amendment campaign’s signature-gathering efforts.
The proposed amendment would have the top two finishers in a primary advance to the general election regardless of party
This type of measure it’s been an absolute disaster in the states where it has passed, such as California. It means that the person who can write the biggest check is more likely to be guaranteed a spot on the November ballot.
It also ensures that the dominant political party wins both June and November, and virtually eliminates any competition from third-party candidates who are often vastly under funded. Independent candidates who have traditionally not been able to get beyond the third-place position in this state will also be eliminated from the November general election ballot.
As a Republican, I will be the first to tell you that this would probably be a very good measure for Republican dominance in deep red SD. But, as a Republican who cares about a balanced system of government, shutting out independents and third party candidates from the November ballot seems to violate a basic sense of fairness.
No one except for the out-of-state group and the people who are taking their money are asking for this great overhaul of our political system.
And that might be the best indication that this is not a change that a majority in South Dakota are looking for.
When they come around, don’t sign on the petition line. Your fellow citizens will thank you for it.