Rep. Tim Goodwin shares Krebs’ ‘rulings’ on D30 State Senate race options

State Representative Tim Goodwin sent out a recent Legislative update that talks about how the Secretary of State Shantel Krebs has ruled in the D30 State Senate Race. Which has me wondering how a ministerial office is able to rule on anything…

From the Desk of Tim R. Goodwin, Representative, District 30

Ruling on the vacant Republican senate seat in district 30…  Last week’s article ended “to be continued next week..”  The reason I ended it that way was because I wasn’t sure what the ruling would be regarding Senator Russell’s vacated senate seat.  In review, Senator Russell ran in the June 5th Republican Primary and won.  Vote totals were

  • Sen. Lance Russell 1922 votes 60%
  • Former Sen. Bruce Rampelberg 865 votes 27%
  • Patricia Shiery 413 votes 13%

Senator Russell won his re-election in the primary by a large margin.  Next he ran a state-wide campaign for the Attorney General seat on the General Election ballot, which will be held Nov. 6, 2018.  This campaign for Attorney General was just for the delegates that were also selected in the June 5th primaries (unless you ran unopposed.  In that case you were automatically a delegate).

On June 21-23, the state Republican Party had a convention in Pierre, SD.  The Democratic Party had their convention the weekend before in Sioux Falls, SD.  At the convention, we delegates selected the State Constitutional Officers, one being the Attorney General, a position currently held by Marty Jackley.

The actual delegate vote was held on Saturday morning, June 23.  To make matters more confusing, Sen. Russell was told by the Sec. of State that he had to resign his newly won Republican senate candidate position to be the Republican Attorney General candidate in the General Election on Nov. 6, 2018, should he win.  Clear as mud? Yea…

So, Senator Russell resigned his senate seat on June 22 in order to be eligible to run for Attorney General.  The election was the next morning, June 23rd.  Sen. Russell lost on the second ballot to Jason Ravnsborg for the Republican Attorney General spot in the General Election.  So now what???

Well, the Secretary of State has ruled that the delegates from District 30 that being Fall River county, Custer county and the portion of Pennington county that is in District 30, need to muster and vote in a Republican senate candidate.  The Sec. of State has also ruled that if Lance Russell wins that delegate vote, she will put him on the General Election ballot in November.  There!  I explained it!!

So what’s next?  The state chairman, Dan Lederman, is responsible to coordinate with each Republican Chair from the 3 mentioned counties and schedule a meeting for the purpose of selecting the Republican senate candidate.  I have spoken with Lance, and he is a candidate for his vacated position.  So at that meeting, time and date yet to be determined, nominations will be made from the floor with a second needed and then the delegates will vote in our Republican senate candidate.

My opinion is that Lance should get his position back as he won it handily in the primary on June 5th.  The only thing he did was run for a higher post, the Attorney General position, causing his resignation should he have won.

Until next week, Julie Frye-Mueller and I thank you for giving us the opportunity to serve as your two representatives in the state house.

Tim R. Goodwin, Representative, District 30

40 Replies to “Rep. Tim Goodwin shares Krebs’ ‘rulings’ on D30 State Senate race options”

  1. letter please

    Is there a copy of Shantel’s ruling somewhere? and what it is based upon…the statute seems clear the other way

  2. Anonymous

    Karma is catching up to Lance. His shrewd, manipulative, Machiavellian move at convention backfired. Lance lost badly, and lost a lifelong friend (John Fitzgerald) in the process. Fitz knows he was robbed of 2nd place and a chance because of Lance’s manipulation and convincing Fitz to sign on to that awful, hideous flyer attacking Jason Ravnsborg. Furthermore, has Lance agreed to support Jason Ravnsborg? Nope. I bet he hasn’t even called him to concede. Sore Loser.

    1. Anonymous

      I like Russell very much. I was leaning towards him until he chose to walk the convention with Lautenschlagger. I found him to be the most charismatic and personable of the 3. I also considered Fitzgerald once I was informed of what Lautenschlagger was like. However, after listening to the speeches I realized Ravnsborg was the best candidate in a very weak field.

      Russell gave up his seat. I’m not sure he should get it back. Give it to Goodwin.

  3. William Beal

    Frankly, I’ll be surprised if one of his opponents doesn’t challenge his candidacy under 12-6-3: Candidacy for two offices at one election prohibited–Exceptions. No person may be a candidate for nomination or election to more than one public office except for the office of President of the United States or vice president of the United States. However, a candidate for any such office is not prohibited from being elected to any one or more party offices as may be provided in chapter 12-5.

    Whether the SoS has issued an opinion, really doesn’t resolve a legal issue, as she’s not a judge.

    While I’m not a lawyer either, the term “candidate for nomination” appears to be specific to political party convention nominations. The only other method of becoming a candidate I’m aware of is by filing the paperwork to appear on a ballot as a candidate for election.

    Ultimately, the only way to clarify the issue is through the legal system.

    1. Brian Liss

      Bill you are thinking in terms of common sense, rather than bureaucratic mathematics. How many candidacies are we talking about? Russell was involved in 3 different candidacies. Senate primary, AG nomination and nominee for the filling of vacancy for the general election. When you look at the exact timing of the official start and the official end of each candidacy you will see that he was/is not in violation and as far as the paperwork was concerned there was no unacceptable overlap.

  4. Anonymous

    Russell should not be given back the senate candacy, how is that fair? He chose to run for AG and lost, he pulled out of the Senate race. Rules are rules, they should not be changed to allow him back in.

  5. Troy Jones


    I am not so sure it is clear.

    My first question is “what is the purpose of the law?”

    I think it is to prevent someone being on the ballot for two positions (a increase of odds to be elected) because it could deny voters a real choice in one of the elections.

    That is not a risk in this situation. He now is only pursuing one position. However, I get the law’s language is clear too that once removed it is permanent removal.

    My bigger beef is he was allowed to campaign, fundraiser, run, and be nominated for Senate and fundraise, campaign, and run for AG concurrently for months.

    Krebs should have dealt with that in the Spring by requesting an advisory opinion and the legislature could deal with any shortcomings (if any) it has in their intent. Unless there is statute which says the SOS has such legal declaratory language.

    That said, Krebs or someone (Lederman?) needs to do their job and get clarity sooner than later. Russell deserves it, the GOP selectors in D30 deserve it, and the voters of D30 deserve it.

    1. Anonymous

      I’m not sure the law allows him to run for Senate again. Why doesnt Krebs answer this?

      12-6-55. Withdrawal by nominee–Time and place of filing. Any person nominated to any elective office may cause his name to be withdrawn from nomination by request in writing, subscribed and sworn to by him before any officer qualified to administer oaths and take acknowledgments. The request shall be filed with the officer with whom the nominating petition was filed pursuant to § 12-6-4, not later than the first Tuesday in August at 5:00 p.m. before the ensuing election. No name so withdrawn shall be printed upon the ballots to be used at such election.

      1. William Beal

        I believe you’re correct, that this is the most appropriate statute governing eligibility to be renominated for a ballot, once one voluntarily withdraws from the ballot.

  6. Anon

    Correct me if I am wrong, however, I believe that Lance officially dropped out of his legislative race before the convention. He might have been campaigning for the AG’s spot while also running for the Senate, however, he technically was not nominated for the AG’s positions until AFTER he dropped his senate bid. His nomination was not official until someone nominated him during the convention. Therefore, he actually was not “a candidate for nomination or election to more than one public office…” at the same time. I think Troy is spot on when you look at what the legislative intent of this statute is. I was not a supporter of Lance for AG, but I do not believe he broke the law. Unlike one of his cronies.

      1. William Beal

        It certainly appears that Stace violated 12-6-3: Candidacy for two offices at one election prohibited by failing to withdraw prior to being nominated as a candidate at the convention.

        Lance may not have violated 12-6-3 by withdrawing before his nomination for AG at the convention, but 12-6-55 Withdrawal by nominee, might prevent him from being placed on the ballot for state senate a second time.

        In any case, both statutes need clarification, preferably before the deadline to fill the vacancies, if a court determines either Lance or Stace are ineligible for the ballot.

  7. Troy Jones


    I agree that Russell probably followed the letter of the law and, if my understanding of the intent is correct, he didn’t follow the spirit or intent of the law. Granted, one can only be held legally responsible for the letter of the law so I don’t advocate anything more than a clarification of the law.

    In short, until I see Krebs has authority to make the ruling she did, I think it incumbent somebody get a formal advisory opinion. If Russell can legally stand for election for Senate, it is the call of the appropriate GOP committees is there should or should not be consequences for only following the letter of the law.

    If he can’t stand for election, the party folks need to know it before they select a nominee.

  8. Troy Jones

    P.S. the reason I think he can be selected is the operative language at the end is in the section contextually dealing with withdrawal. In the section allowing the county parties to replace a nomination vacancy, there is no restriction on who they can select but an eligible Republican from the district. That is why I think they are free to select him to replace himself.

    But, I stress my opinion is of no import (or yours). We need an advisory opinion. BTW, I think the only legal way that might prevent him is the restriction of not running for two offices concurrently (which may not be the law even if it was the intent).

  9. Anonymous

    I don’t think the original crafters of the law imagined such a situation. Takes gall to withdraw and then change your mind

  10. Cinder

    What about Stace? He was nominated and accepted the nomination for Lt. Gov. He was defeated badly, but he still accepted candidacy for the position. Therefore he either violated the law and should be held accountable, or he should be held to the same standard as Lance. Are they or are they not eligible to be a candidate for their Senate positions? I would think our Attorney General could offer an opinion or if necessary, a court should decide, but clearly the final word does not rest with Sec. Krebs.

  11. Anonymous

    If Lance is nominated by the District 30 Central Committee, his nomination will be challenged.

    Someone will file a lawsuit against Lance to kick him off the ballot. The law is very clear that he cannot have his name placed back on the ballot after being withdrawn.

    A judge will have no choice but to kick him off the ballot and then Gideon Oakes will win the November election to become the State Senator from District 30.

    “Senator Oakes”. Get used to saying that.

  12. Troy Jones

    While the matter is unclear on Russell and I think he can be selected, I have no rationale I can devise that doesn’t conclude Stace has violated both the intent and letter of the law. Of course, I am not a lawyer but I do think both need to be definitively resolved prior to the printing of ballots.

    Regarding Stace, since he knew this was an issue as Lance resigned his candidacy for Senate, it is reasonable to ask why he didn’t resign his candidacy. When it doesn’t make sense a law enforcement officer so openly flaunted the law, it makes me think there is a reason I don’t know about. What could it be?

  13. Mark N.

    Many people here are reading way to much into these statutes. A judge looking at Sen. Russell’s case is going to see a person who was overwhelmingly elected by the primary voters (who knew he was running for AG and supported him anyway), withdrew to run for AG, and then was elected again by the county central committee members in the district (assuming of course that they choose him since that is the only way his case will get to a judge). So removing Russell from the ballot would require the judge to ignore the will of the voters twice (in the primary and in the county party election) and to potentially leave a major party without a nominee on the ballot, which would prevent the voters from expressing their choice. Judges don’t like doing any of that.

    What is more likely to happen is that the judge will determine that the last sentence of SDCL 12-6-55 is a ministerial direction to county auditors and the SOS that names that are withdrawn aren’t placed on the ballot, and the judge will determine that a name placed back on the ballot by a county party using 12-6-57 is a new name and not the “name so withdrawn” even if it is the same person.

    1. Lee Schoenbeck

      That’s a stretch. I suspect it’s more likely that a court will apply the statutes literally, unless you get one of those activists. Under the language as written, there’s no debate that the name Lance Russell can’t appear and a new person is required

        1. Anonymous

          I agree with Mark. For the purposes of SDCL 12-6-55, Russell’s withdrawn name and the county party’s replacement name are different entities, even if they refer to the same person.

      1. Mark N.

        But a literal reading of the statute without any other context would also then apply to Larry Rhoden. His name was withdrawn from the ballot but will still be “printed upon the ballots to be used at such election.” The statute doesn’t say it only applies to the office from which the individual withdrew. Is Rhoden’s name also disqualified from being on the ballot as Lt. Gov.?

  14. Lee Schoenbeck

    You can do “what if” games all day, but if this is an English class quiz in a non-ESL class, the answer isn’t close. You can say this wasn’t intended, and ask the legislature to amend it, but for today – English is English

  15. Troy Jones


    I am with you but you are misstating Lee’s position to an irrational extreme.

    The question is does the ballot prohibition attach to the withdrawn person for that office and general election or only with regards to the withdrawal. A strong case can be made for both.

    What you, I, and Lee (recognizing he is a lawyer so his insight is likely better informed) think is not important. What is important is an authoritative interpretation of the law as written.

    Most of your 1:51 pm argument is very alarming to me as introduces whim and discerning the political wishes of the people in a particular district to a personal person. It looks exactly what a liberal says about a living Constitution in justification of ignoring the actual written law.

    1). Having the court consider primary results basically negates the rule of law and makes us a banana republic.

    2) This is not about Lance Russell. It is about what is the law.

    Somebody in authority needs to do their job and get an advisory opinion on this and Stace’s situation soon. Otherwise, both of these positions are going to be litigated, an outcome that is uncertain and jeopardizes two safe Republican seats.

    1. William Beal

      The question to me is (perhaps you or Lee may know) WHO exactly is in a position to resolve the legal question as to Lance and Stace’s eligibility under statutes 12-6-3 and 12-6-55, and WHAT needs to happen for them to do so?

      I’m assuming, either the SoS needs to request legal clarification OR someone with legal standing to challenge eligibility must file a suit, but I don’t know the details.

      It appears to me that the SoS is in the best position to make the request, as their office has to certify the ballots.

  16. Troy Jones


    This is my non-lawyer understanding.

    1) Only a court has the authority to interpret a law definitively.

    2) Agencies/departments/Offices can ask for a advisory opinion from the AG if they are uncertain of either the law or their authority on the matter. Because the AG’s office usually does a detailed analysis of the law, it is rare these advisory opinions aren’t upheld by the Courts. And, when the court and AG disagrees, they often do the best they legally can to give a “pass” when the agency in good faith relied on the opinion.

    I know of nothing in the law or administrative rules which gives the SOS any authority to issue anything more than an informed opinion (which has not real legal standing) on this matter. I agree it makes sense to me for the SOS to make the request ASAP. Then, the losing party can read the legal reasoning and have an informed assessment of whether to take it to the courts.

    If the SOS doesn’t do it, we will end up in court and a resolution might not be timely (prior to the printing of ballots) because all it takes is on Democrat in Lance’s or Stace’s district to petition the courts. This seems like a crazy result when it can be avoided.

    1. anonymous

      “1) Only a court has the authority to interpret a law definitively”


      “which has not real legal standing)”

      Wrong. EVERY branch of government has the duty to “interpret” laws that govern and affect it in a reasonable manner, and those “interpretations” have as much weight as other branches’.

      You need to stop posting as your posts are largely poorly considered. Other posters in the past have shown just how silly and bitter you appear.

      give it a break.

  17. Troy Jones

    I don’t know why you are so angry or insulting Anonymous 11:01. Would you please put your name up so we can understand why you respond so and your qualification to make the judgment you do. It is interesting though you don’t have a suggestion on the solution or if there is even a problem.

    I qualified my statement as my non-attorney understanding. However, I am absolutely confident that your statement (Executive “interpretations have as much weight as other branches”) is categorically wrong.

    The South Dakota Constitution vests in the “Judicial Department” all judicial powers. It says “The Governor has authority to require opinions of the Supreme Court upon important questions of law involved in the exercise of his executive power and upon solemn occasions.” If the Governor or Executive Branch’s interpretations were as potent as the Judiciary’s, why would he ask for the Judiciary’s opinion?

    I admit that I do not know specifically if other Constitutional Officers (like the /sos) have this “right” to require opinions but it would surprise me if they didn’t because they are considered part of the Executive Branch. However, I also know agencies usually avail themselves of an AG advisory opinion (in lieu of a formal Court ruling) because it comes quicker and often provides advice on the matter at hand or might prevent the situation from arising in the future.

    Regarding your other statement “EVERY branch of government has the duty to “interpret” laws that govern and affect it in a reasonable manner,” I agree because all agencies are subject to the law and are required to implement the law. But, that doesn’t give their interpretation formal legal standing above a finding of the courts. I would understand your comment here if you are a big government, activist judiciary, liberal thwarting the rule of law. Otherwise, you come across as the bitter one. What is bothering you? Convention not go your way? Time to move on. It’s been a few weeks now.

    Ironically, the recent SCOTUS rulings are reversing the Chevron deference to Executive Branch interpretation of law. Newly nominated Judge Kavanaugh has a deep and strong record of opposing deference to Executive Branch interpretation, which is most substantive disagreement he will face from liberals in his confirmation hearings. In fact, he authored in his current job several rulings that chipped away at Chevron which were ultimately upheld by the SCOTUS

  18. Mark N.

    I agree that a judge should only consider the law. Much of what I said in my 1:51 post was not a legal argument about how a judge should rule. I was merely stating the facts that a judge will be aware of if this gets in front of him or her. Judges are humans, and I think that a judge will want to avoid a result that keeps the people of the district electing from their preferred candidate. Hence why I think a judge may try find a way to interpret the statute to avoid that result.

    I am a little confused about why Lee (whose opinion I do respect) brushed off my response to his 2:17 post and why you considered it to be an irrational extreme. The statute says “No name so withdrawn shall be printed upon the ballots to be used at such election.” If we are only looking at the words of the statute, how does it not apply to Larry Rhoden? He was a candidate for office, he withdrew his name, and yet it will still be printed on the ballot. Words limiting the statute’s effect only to the office from which the candidate withdrew do not appear in the sentence. I understand that it would be terrible result and that such a result is not what the Legislature intended, but those don’t matter in a “plain language” view of the statute. Can someone give me a reasoned explanation looking only at the language of the statute that prevents Russell from being placed back on the ballot while allowing Rhoden to be on? I haven’t seen one yet, which is why I think a judge is likely to interpret the statute in a manner that allows both on the ballot.

  19. Troy Jones


    ANY judge incapable of compartmentalizing the politics does not have the demeanor to be a judge. Period. This should be about the law. If Stace or Lance took an action that disqualifies them from office, it denies the wishes of the people no less than them not having sufficient valid signatures. To consider your view basically negates all qualification criteria to be a candidate.

    Regarding your “strict read”, it deserves light treatment. The entire section of requiring withdrawal before running for another office is not a “gotcha” to get one off the ballot for all offices.

    What Lee asserts, which has merit even though I disagree, is related to a strict reading for that office. In the end, we need either a definitive court ruling or an AG advisory opinion that is firm on what is the law. And sooner than later.

  20. Anonymous

    What I haven’t seen mentioned here is that unlike the primary, in which votes can be cast by all registered Republicans, the replacement candidate will be selected by the members of the affected counties’ central committees. These are people who had to follow election law themselves to get the positions they have, so they can be expected to care more about such nuances than the average voter. In other words, Central Committee members are nit-picky. Let’s wait and see what they do with this.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.