This afternoon, Jim Bolin offers congratulations to Bill Shorma for the Governor’s appointment to the District 16 Senate seat. Which also happens to be the same legislative seat that outgoing State Senator Dan Lederman had recommended Bolin for:
I want to congratulate Mr. Shorma on his appointment to the legislature. I look forward to working with him on areas of mutual concern and interest. In 2015, the governor very legitimately gets to decide who will be the new state senator for District # 16. In 2016, the voters in District # 16 will very legitimately decide the same question.
“In 2015, the governor very legitimately gets to decide who will be the new state senator for District # 16. In 2016, the voters in District # 16 will very legitimately decide the same question.” Hmmmm….. that kind of leaves the door open.
It wouldn’t be the first time a Gubernatorial appointee has been challenged within the party for Governor Daugaard. In the past, I’ve seen legislative appointees failing to successfully get through the general election at the rate of about 50% at one point in the Mickelson administration. But generally Governor Daugaard has enjoyed electoral success.
For Daugaard, in Shorma & Bolin’s district, District 16, after David Anderson was appointed to take Patty Miller’s place, a hard right candidate Kevin Jensen, who was strongly supported by the South Dakota Gun Owners in a challenge for one of the seats ran for the office, but was soundly defeated by around 300 votes in the race.
In challenges outside of the Republican party which resulted in losses, Rep. Kent Juhnke who was appointed to fill a Senate seat for Cooper Garnos lost in 2012 to Larry Lucas in a newly redistricted seat. Chuck Jones of Flandreau who had been appointed to the State Senate by Daugaard lost to sitting Representative Scott Parsley in the general election.
But those are far fewer than the wins, as described above for the primary, and here in the general; Blake Curd, who was appointed to fill a District 12 seat has successfully run for re-election, as has Representative Kris Langer appointed by Governor Daugaard in 2013. Curd defeated his democratic opponent on a 60-40% basis, and Langer’s democratic opponents withdrew from the election. Senator Alan Solano appointed in early 2014 joined Langer in running unopposed in the 2014 general election.
Although…. Possible spoiler alert: There was word going around the Capitol during the 2015 session that House Majority Leader Brian Gosch could possibly be contemplating a primary challenge to Senator Alan Solano for the District 32 State Senate seat in ’16. But with Solano having won election in his own right, it’s hard to call it an appointee challenge. (Not to say that it’s going to happen. But, as I’d said, the rumor was running around – PP.)