Redistricting decisions coming

Senator Todd Schlekeway and Senator Angie Buhl

District 11 Senator Todd Schlekeway (R) and District 15 Senator Angie Buhl (D) were on KELOLand news to discuss the redistricting process.

A committee of 12 Republicans and three Democrats worked through the summer on the redistricting plan. A special one-day session to finalize the plan will be held in Pierre Monday.

Every corner of South Dakota has to be represented equally at the state capitol in Pierre.  That’s why lawmakers have to redraw the legislative districts every ten years following the census.

17 Replies to “Redistricting decisions coming”

  1. Anonymous

    Schlekeway is a top notch individual making the GOP look good.

    Buhl is complaining about partisanship and how gerrymandered the districts are when the GOP already holds 30 of the 35 senate seats.

    Until the Dems followed Obama off a cliff they had 15 senate seats in SD.

    It’s not the GOP that screwed things up for the Dems. It’s OBAMA!

  2. Repost from Dakota Voice

    Here’s an article was previously posted at Dakota Voice…some points to consider…

    By Federal Farmer

    As many of you are now aware, there will be some significant changes taking place in legislative districts across South Dakota due to the results of the 2010 Census and the resulting redistricting process that is now in its final stages.

    On the east side of the state, in appears that the redistricting process will result in four additional House seats and two additional Senate seats for the Sioux Falls area.

    In addition, according to published reports, including this one quoted in the Mitchell Daily Republic, the redistricting will result in several current Republican legislators being forced into primaries. Several of those legislators reside in the Sioux Falls area including the ones mentioned in the quote below:

    The legislative committee?s recommendations also would create a Republican primary in a Minnehaha County district between three House incumbents. They are Rep. Bob Deelstra, of Hartford, Rep. Steve Hickey, of Sioux Falls and Rep. Lora Hubbel, of Sioux Falls. All are serving their first terms.

    Now obviously, some changes are to be expected whenever redistricting is necessary ? and inevitably some primaries are likely to result when changes like this are made. And with a redistricting committee composed of 12 Republicans and 3 Democrats, there are bound to be complaints about how the redistricting is being done.In remarks to the Argus Leader regarding some of the newly drawn district boundaries in the Sioux Falls area, Rep. Fargen (D- Flandreau) opined that:

    It does a dishonesty to the people in the rural areas. They may not get as much representation in those areas as they should.

    Perhaps his point is a valid one, but that is a topic best suited for another article.

    Lost in all the ?Republican vs. Democrat? rhetoric over the redistricting map, is the fact that there appears to be a disturbing trend emerging in regard to how some of the more conservative members of the legislature are being treated by the S.D. GOP in the proposed redistricting plan.

    It appears now that the new district boundaries could possibly result in noted Pro-Life advocate Roger Hunt (R-Brandon), who is now term-limited in the House, having to compete for a Senate seat against Senator (and S.D. GOP party chairman) Tim Rave. Running against an incumbent state party chairman is not what you would call an enviable position. In fact, running a primary campaign for Senate in that situation would qualify as an ?uphill battle?. And that?s probably an understatement.

    In the case of Rep. Steve Hickey from District 9, and Rep. Lora Hubbel from District 11, the committee is proposing that Precinct 3-9 (where Rep. Hubbel resides) be added to District 9. This proposed change is likely to result in two conservative and solidly Pro-Life members of the Republican party being forced to run against each other in a primary in 2012.

    If that were to end up being the case, the Pro-Life community could very well end up losing valuable support in the legislature.

    One of the ?interesting? things about the redistricting committee?s proposal to shift Rep. Hubbel out of District 11 and into District 9, is that there were at least three other redistricting proposals under consideration for the Sioux Falls area. Those other proposals would have in all likelihood allowed Rep. Hubbel to not only remain in District 11, but would have also allowed the voters of District 11 to retain their duly elected representative.

    If these were the only two instances where conservative Republicans might possibly be facing a primary challenge or other impediment in their re-election campaigns due to redistricting, perhaps we could chalk it up to mere happenstance.Unfortunately, that does not appear to be the case.

    In the case of Rep. Jenna Haggar (I), another Pro-Life legislator from Sioux Falls, the boundaries of District 15 have been gerrymandered to specifically exclude Precinct 5-16 where she resides. That change would move her into District 10 where she will have only about seven months to introduce herself to a totally new group of voters before the primary.

    At the same time, Precinct 4-4 which was part of District 9 and is the precinct adjoining Precinct 5-16 has now been added to District 15. This is significant for two reasons:

    First of all, Precinct 4-4 just so happens to have an almost 350 person advantage in Democrat voter registrations, which allows the redistricting committee to consolidate even more Democrat voters into what is an already heavily Democrat district.

    Secondly, by moving Rep. Haggar to District 10 and a different voter base, they are essentially going to make re-election more difficult for yet another conservative Pro-Life legislator.

    Click to enlarge
    However, the Sioux Falls conurbation area is not the only part of the state where these redistricting shenanigans are taking place.

    Over in District 25, we see the exact same redistricting theme emerging once again.

    In the Mitchell/Alexandria/Fulton area, Rep. Stace Nelson who is also a solid conservative and Pro-Life House member, will be bumped out of District 25 and into District 19 due to the new proposed redistricting plan.Although Rep. Nelson will not necessarily face a Republican primary challenger this time around, he will however, be matched up in the general election against well-funded and veteran Democrat legislator Rep. Frank Kloucek who ran for a seat in the House in 2010 after being term-limited in the Senate.

    We are of the opinion that these examples are not merely coincidental, but part of a deliberate effort to marginalize conservative Republican and Independent lawmakers.Now, to be fair, one political website has noted there may possibly be one or two districts where incumbent Democrats could also end up having to run against each other in a primary.But doesn?t it seem more than a little odd that a Republican-dominated redistricting committee would seemingly make it even more difficult for some of the more conservative members of its own caucus to get re-elected than members of the opposing party?

    One might expect to see some potential district realignments or outright gerrymandering if the aim was only to achieve (or protect) a Republican majority in both the House and Senate.

    But with already substantial majorities in both houses of the legislature it seems increasingly clear to many observers that the establishment Republicans and now the redistricting committee as well, seem to be focusing on making it as difficult as possible for several of the most conservative and Pro-Life Republican legislators to get re-elected in 2012.

    It appears that they are doing so in an attempt to minimize the influence of conservative Independents and Republicans and to preserve the political status-quo in Pierre.

    Our question to those of you reading this article is this: Are you willing to do something to protest against the unfair treatment of conservative and Pro-Life legislators?

    If your answer is ?YES? then please click this link to send us an e-mail if you would be willing to sign an online petition in support of our conservative legislators or to receive information on how you can send e-mails to the members of the redistricting committee to let them know that you disapprove of how they are treating conservative legislators in the redistricting process.

    In addition, if you would like to support any of the conservative candidates mentioned in this article, please check out their websites and make a contribution to their campaigns.

    1. Anonymous

      I feel bad for Stace Nelson but why doesn’t he just run for School and Public Lands in a couple years if the redistricting doesn’t work out?

      Lora Hubbel – I think I’ve heard she’s going to challenge Deb Peters for Senate. Even if I’m wrong on who I’m saying she’ll challenge I’ve heard she’s strongly considering a Senate run.

      Jenna Haggar – I think she works in Brandon so it isn’t like she’s hurt that badly plus her old district was a D district. She can always move back to 15 if she wants.

      If conservative legislators get put in districts that are moderate then just primary someone. Trust me. It works and scares the daylights out of moderates.

      1. grudznick

        Young Mr. Nelson would make a very good Lands commissioner. I think he should consider that despite any of this districting business.

    2. Spencer

      I understand your concerns with this post, but I believe you are a little too fixated on a glass being half empty when the other vantage point is just as valid. This provides conservatives a chance to advance on other seats.

      If Lora Hubbel really does end up challenging a pro-abortionist RINO like Deb Peters, why wouldn’t we all benefit from that?

      If Stace Nelson runs against a guy more interested in wasting our time with a House Commemoration for every pile of cow crap he sees in his district rather than work on real issues, why wouldn’t we all benefit from that?

      If we dump as many registered Democrats as possible into District 15 leaving Buhl to endlessly preach to her small choir while giving Jenna a better chance to shine and be appreciated in another district, why wouldn’t we all benefit from that?

      I very much want to see Stace, Lora, and Jenna remain in public service for as many years as they are able. Hopefully, all three view this as an opportunity to further benefit South Dakota with their service.

    1. grudznick

      I do not disagree with you, but not knowing the young Mr. S. and reading often about how stand-uppy he is, I wish somebody would enlighten me about what Mr. S. stands up to. I’m not saying he doesn’t, I just am curious because he’s called “stand-up” so much.

  3. Lee Schoenbeck

    If the commentator is implying that Val Rausch is some how a liberal who engineered a plan to get rid of conservatives, I’ve got a bridge to sell you. While I can’t speak to the precinct chess game in SF, the rural parts of the state are well drawn along community economic interest lines. That’s a tough gig to pull off and they did a good job of it.

  4. caheidelberger

    Are you people paying attention? The GOP plan moves Nelson out of competition with other Dist. 25 GOPers and gives him a walk with only one other incumbent, Kloucek, in the new Dist. 19. Kloucek is offering an amendment that keeps Bon Homme County whole and makes his re-election more challenging by pitting himself against two GOP incumbents, Nelson and Van Gerpen.

    I do relish the prospect of Republicans ousting Hubbel. Did she do anything good all session? She is the least articulate of her conservative compadres. Go ahead, Lora, challenge Deb Peters. She’ll eat you alive.

    1. Spencer

      Here is an ?articulate? Deb Peters on Indian Country:
      http://www.southdacola.com/blog/2010/10/rep-peters-district-9-finally-debates-wilson-and-makes-some-disheartening-statements-about-native-americans/

      Here is Deb Peters using talking points from Planned Parenthood:
      http://www.aolnews.com/2011/03/02/south-dakota-senate-votes-to-require-72-hour-wait-for-abortion/

      Here is Deb Peters bending over backwards to stab pro-lifers in the back:
      http://dakotawomen.com/2011/03/11/news-roundup-2/

      Don?t kid yourself; if Deb Peters faces a credible candidate like Lora in a primary, Deb is in the fight of her life.

    2. Stace Nelson

      Mr. “H,”

      Actually, Rep. Kloucek’s amendment is not the altruism you claim. His plan calls for Bon Homme to be made a whole county, and for Hanson County to then be placed in with Davison County while keeping McCook County within the new District 19. This would simultaneously remove me as an election opponent and remove me from a major portion of my remaining current district (McCook County) while putting me in a district with 3 other Republican legislators.

      His alternative amendment idea would be to keep Hanson County in the current pland but place Douglas County (Sen. Putnam) in with Charles Mix, etc. counties.

      Rep. Kloucek’s plans are politically advantageous to him; however, the folks in Bon Homme do deserve the same consideration of their wishes to remain a whole country that the committee showed others all over the state.

    3. Les

      You confuse me Cory. Lora is one of a handful challenging the entrenched machine and you want her out? Your dog doesn’t hunt Cory!

  5. Anonymous

    Deb Peters should be in trouble after her pro-choice voting. I’m not a Lora Hubbel fan but I would vote for her because she seems genuine even if she is a little fringe.

  6. Job Creator

    Come on committee! Can’t you find some Democrats to throw under the bus? This is insane when you draw the lines so Republicans are cannibalizing themselves!