And now, the House candidates… at least, so far

Following up to my post on the Senate,  this should be fairly close to the official list of who will be running in the State Senate. Each House District elects two, with the exception of the single House Districts of 26 and 28, where they elect house members individually in A and B divisions.

I’ve heard there might be challenges in process, so we’ll see where things end up. But this should be close to done. You’ll take note that Democrats have abandoned all hope for about 26 of the 70 House seats.


GOP Candidates

More GOP Candidates

Dem/Libertarian Opponents


Tamara St. John


Jennifer Keintz Healy (D)



Steven McCleerey (D)


Lana Greenfield




Kaleb Weis




Drew Dennert


Leslie McLaughlin (D)


Carl Perry


Justin Rommerick (D)


Fred Deutsch


Becky Holtquist (D)


John Mills




Hugh Bartels

Jacob Sigurdson



Nancy York




Nathan Block

Aaron Aylward, Thomas Werner

                    Cody Ingle (D)


Ernie Otten




Doug Post

Larry Tidemann

Louise Snodgrass (D)


Tim Reed


Bill Adamson (D)


Marli Wiese


Val Parsley (D)


Randy Gross




Bethany Soye

Mike Clark

Michael Saba (D)


Rhonda Milstead


Toni Miller (D)


Steven Haugaard


Gary Leighton (D)


Doug Barthel


Michelle Hentschel (D)


Mark Willadsen


Sheryl Johnson (D),


Chris Karr


Margaret Kuipers (D)


Arch Beal

George Hendrickson

Erin Royer (D)


Greg Jamison

Amy MIller



Richard Thomason


Kelly Sullivan (D)


Sue Peterson


Norman Bliss (D)


Tom Holmes

Brad Lindwurm

Erin Healy (D)


Taylor Rae Rehfeldt


Mike Huber (D)


Matt Rosberg


Linda Duba (R)


Cole Heisey


Jamie Smith (R)


David Anderson

Bill Shorma



Kevin Jensen




Richard Vasgaard

Charlie Kludt

Al Leber (D)


Dan Werner

Sydney Davis

MIchelle Maloney (D)


Mike Stevens


Ryan Cwach (D)



Carol Williams (D)


Marty Overweg



Jessica Baumiller




Lance Koth

Barry Volk



Paul Miskimins




Caleb Finck


Jessica Hegge (D)


Rocky Blare




Bob Glanzer*


Mark Smith (D)


Roger Chase


John McEnelly (D)


James Wangsness

Charlie Hoffman



Spencer Gosch

Kevin Watts



Jeff Monroe

Mike Weisgram, Bob Lowery

 Amanda Bachmann (D)


Will Mortenson

Dr. Noel Chicoine



Jon Hansen


Jeff Barth (D)


Tom Pischke


Jared Nieuwenhuis (D)



Shawn Bordeaux (D), Alexa Frederick (D)


Rebecca Reimer


Tim Feliciano (D)


Bill Hines


Ernest Weston Jr (D)



Peri Pourier (D)



Oren Lesmeister (D), Dean Schrempp (D)


J Sam Marty




Thomas Brunner

Dean Wink



Kirk Chaffee

Lincoln Schuck



Tim Goodwin

Kwin Neff



Trish Ladner

Florence Thompson



Mary Fitzgerald

Scott Odenbach, Julie Ann Olson

Brooke Abdallah (D)


Dayle Hammock

Brandon Flanagan



Becky Drury


Toni Diamond (D)


Chris Johnson


Adam Weaver (D)


Melanie Torno

Phil Jensen



Taffy Howard




Jess Olson

Jodie Frye Byington

Rick Stracqualursi (D)


Mike Derby


Nick Anderson (D)


Tina Mulally


David Hubbard (D)


Tony Randolph


Pat Cromwell (D)

*State Representative Bob Glanzer who tragically passed away as a result of Coronavirus is not in a primary, so he will move forward to the general election.  At a point before the second Tuesday in August, as per 12-8-6, the county GOP organizations have the opportunity to replace him on the ballot.  This differs from the Turbiville situation from the last election, where he passed away after the deadline. 

So, who is in the race? A week out from the deadline, this should be it (Senate)

I had sent a note to the Secretary of State’s office yesterday seeking information on any straggling petitions that had snuck in over the weekend, and have yet to hear anything in the midst of challenges going on. So I’m left to assume this should be fairly close to the official list of who will be running in the State Senate:

Dist. Republican 1 Republican 2 Dem/Libertarian
1 Michael Rohl Susan Wismer (D)
2 Brock L. Greenfield
3 Al Novstrup Josh Halsey (D)
4 John Wiik
5 Lee Schoenbeck
6 Herman Otten Isaac Latterell Nancy Kirstein (D)
7 V. J. Smith
8 Casey Crabtree
9 Wayne Steinhauer Suzanne “Suzie” Jones Pranger (D)
10 Margaret Sutton Nichole Cauwels (D)
11 Jim Stalzer Tom Cool (D)
12 Blake Curd Jessica Meyers (D)
13 Jack Kolbeck
14 Larry Zikmund Dave Zellmer Timothy Reed (D)
15 Thor Bardon Reynold Nesiba (D)
16 Jim Bolin
17 Arthur Rusch Nancy Rasmussen Codylee Reidmann (D)
18 Jean Hunhoff Jay Williams (D)
19 Kyle Schoenfish
20 Josh Klumb Alexander Martin (L)
21 Lee Qualm Erin Tobin Dan Kerner Andersson (D)
22 David Wheeler
23 Bryan Breitling Larry Nielson
24 Mary Duvall
25 Kris Langer
26 Joel Koskan Troy Heinert (D)
27 Judd Schompp Red Dawn Foster (D)
28 Ryan Maher
29 Gary L. Cammack Terri Jorgenson
30 Julie Frye Mueller George Kotti
31 Tim Johns John Teupel
32 Helene Duhamel Michael Calabrese (D)
33 Dave Johnson Janet Jensen  Ryan A Ryder (D)
34 Mike Diedrich George Nelson (D)
35 Jessica Castleberry Kevin Quick 

We dropped a primary in D15, when Brenda Lawrence was successfully challenged and decertified yesterday.  In fact, that had happened earlier in the same district with Independent Brian Burge.

The most striking thing about this list is that Democrats appear to have already conceded 17 of the seats – just one shy of completely conceding a majority of the races in the state senate. And in a number of them that remain it appears that successfully managed to get placeholders to keep a seat warm, in case they can find someone better to run.

This could be a year where the GOP further whittles down the number of State Senators in the Senate. Stay tuned.

South Dakota Right to Life issues ratings for 2020 Legislative Session

Coming off of the chaotic close of the 2020 Legislative Session, South Dakota Right to Life has issued their ratings for legislators on the bills that they supported/opposed during the legislative session:

You can find out more on how they ranked/rated legislators and why on their website at

US Senator John Thune’s Weekly Column – Professor John Thune: U.S. Government 101

Professor John Thune: U.S. Government 101
By Sen. John Thune

Click here or on the image above to watch the video.

Hey, parents. I know these are crazy times we’re living in, and many of you have now unexpectedly added “teacher” to your long list of titles, which also likely includes “coach,” “cook,” and “hall monitor.” Hopefully there haven’t been too many visits to the principal’s office. While I don’t have a solution to everything you’re facing right now, I’ve got something that I hope will at least help. More on that in a minute, though.

Throughout this coronavirus outbreak, Congress has been focused on providing support and relief to the American people. We’ve already passed, and the president has signed, three relief packages that are already helping families, workers, small businesses, and the country’s health care community.

We’ve prioritized things like ensuring anyone who needs to get tested for the coronavirus can do so at no cost to themselves. We’re making sure that no-strings-attached emergency cash payments make it into Americans’ hands as soon as possible and that small businesses have the support they need to keep their operations open and employees on payroll. Importantly, doctors, nurses, and other health care professionals are getting additional and much-needed resources to both treat patients and help protect themselves on the front lines of this battle.

Everyone is feeling the effect of this ongoing pandemic, which is why we tried to make it a little easier for graduates to manage their student loan debt. I’m glad a bill I helped write was included in the last relief package the president signed. It will give employers the option to help graduates pay down student loan debt by up to $5,250 per employee each year tax-free. The new law will also allow graduates to defer payments and interest for six months – penalty-free – on qualified federal student loans. And for those Americans who are out of work as a result of this crisis, we’re strengthening states’ unemployment benefit programs for those who need them the most.

Our recent efforts have also helped the farming and ranching community, which has faced hurdle after hurdle these last few years. At my urging, the latest bill replenished the critically important Commodity Credit Corporation and allocated nearly $10 billion in emergency funding to help producers in South Dakota and around the country. There’s so much support for this effort that I teamed up with U.S. Rep. Dusty Johnson to lead a bipartisan group of senators and members of the House – a group that represents more than 25 percent of the entire Congress – to urge the secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture to take immediate action using the resources we provided in the new law.

Everyone is still adjusting to this new lifestyle where social distancing and teleworking are now considered normal, especially parents who’ve now become at-home educators. Since many schools are closed for the foreseeable future – some for the remainder of the school year – I wanted to do my part to help those parents, students, and teachers who are adjusting to this new at-home learning environment on top of everything else they’re facing these days.

That’s why I decided to record a short video lesson about the basics of the federal government that parents can show to their at-home students or teachers can work into curriculums they might already be using for virtual learning experiences. I’m hoping it will help provide educators and students with a tiny bit of additional content that could help diversify virtual lesson plans during these unusual times.

If you’re interested in using my video lesson, you can find it on my social media channels, including Facebook andTwitter (@SenJohnThune), or by visiting If you find it helpful and would be interested in additional lessons, please leave a comment and let me know. By visiting the same website, you can find additional coronavirus-related updates from me and my staff, plus a ton of helpful links and resources that will help South Dakotans better navigate this crisis. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, call, email, or write, and we’ll get it to you as soon as possible.

We’re learning more and more each day about what bonds us as Americans because we’re all experiencing and coping with this crisis together. We’re also learning about new ways to contribute to our communities and stay connected with friends and family even when we’re afar. In these uncertain times, I urge you to embody the examples of kindness we’re seeing in South Dakota and around the country and continue to share stories of hope, support, and generosity when you see them.


US Senator Mike Rounds’ Weekly Column: How to Access COVID-19 Resources

How to Access COVID-19 Resources
By U.S. Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.)

COVID-19 is impacting every South Dakotan right now. On top of worrying about the health and safety of our loved ones and ourselves, many people in our state have been put in a difficult financial position due to the virus. We’re facing a highly unusual situation where many businesses have had to close in order to protect the health of our citizens. To help keep our economy going, Congress passed—and the president signed into law–the CARES Act, a nearly $2 trillion relief bill. It includes resources to help individuals, families, businesses and others weather this storm.

In the coming weeks, money will be distributed to Americans to help keep our economy going. Adults earning less than $75,000 annually will receive $1,200 from the U.S. Treasury, plus $500 per child age 16 and under. Married couples filing jointly will receive $2,400 if their combined income is less than $150,000. Income amounts are calculated based on your most recent tax return. This payment will be disbursed as a direct deposit for taxpayers who have previously received tax refunds via direct deposit. Paper checks will be mailed to those without direct deposit information on file with the IRS. There is no requirement that citizens must earn an income to be eligible, meaning that even people who make $0 in income will receive the money as long as they aren’t the dependent of a taxpayer. Additionally seniors whose only income is from Social Security and veterans whose only income is a veterans’ disability payment are eligible for these funds as long as they aren’t the dependent of another taxpayer.

Businesses with 500 employees or fewer, as well as self-employed individuals, can participate in the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). The PPP will provide up to $10 million in loans to businesses that can help them cover payroll costs for employees. The loans can also be used to make payments on interest on mortgages, and pay rent and utilities incurred starting Feb. 15, 2020. If small businesses that receive PPP loans keep their employees on their payroll, SBA will forgive most of the loans. This is an incentive for businesses to keep their workers employed. The SBA and Treasury Department recently issued interim guidance for local lenders. Banks and credit unions in South Dakota are reviewing this information and hope to be able to offer these loans. We understand that the SBA has been tasked with putting together a new, complex program in a short amount of time. Likewise, we understand the concerns of community banks, lenders and borrowers regarding the implementation of the PPP and the urgency of getting this program running to help businesses and employees. We are in discussions with both the SBA and South Dakota lenders and borrowers, around the clock, to relay information in order to make certain the program works as intended.

Employees who have already been let go due to COVID-19 may be rehired by their employer if the small business applies to the PPP. The intent of the PPP is to make sure workers continue to receive a paycheck and benefits until they can physically return to their workplace. Westrongly urge employers to utilize the PPP during this time. In the meantime, individuals who are out of work can file for unemployment benefits. The CARES Act increases the amount of benefits unemployed beneficiaries receive during this time.

We know many people have questions about what benefits they are eligible for and how to receive them. While the CARES Act is now law, the executive branch of the government is continuing to work on implementing it. Families and businesses need relief, and they need it now. I am urging the different federal agencies to work as quickly as they can to implement the CARES Act. Because of the size of the relief legislation, implementation will unfortunately take some time. As new guidance and rules become available, we are sharing it on our COVID-19 webpage:

We want to make it as easy as possible for South Dakotans to access the resources they need. If you have questions that you haven’t been able to get answered, please contact my offices in Pierre, Sioux Falls, Rapid City and Aberdeen. All our phone numbers are listed on my website, We are working every day to find solutions for South Dakotans during this uncertain time.


Congressman Dusty Johnson’s Weekly Column: Working Through COVID-19 Together

Working Through COVID-19 Together
By Rep. Dusty Johnson

Like other businesses across the country, my office has had to dramatically shift how we operate as we fight COVID-19 as a nation. Congress began implementing teleworking procedures nearly a month ago and my office is following social distancing and work-from-home protocols that the CDC has recommended.

Thankfully, modern technology allows us to keep our phone lines on, our emails open, and our casework operations functioning. I’ve been able to host a tele-town hall focused on your questions about COVID-19 every single week since the CDC began implementing social distancing. I want to be clear – if you need assistance during COVID-19, we are up and running, and we can help you if you contact our office.

I recognize the ability to telework is not available to everyone, especially in states like South Dakota, where many of our businesses are in rural locations without access to quality internet. That’s why I felt it was important to support the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which will provide relief to businesses facing hard times during this pandemic.

The CARES Act is geared toward American families and small businesses. During my recent tele-town hall, more than two hundred South Dakotans had a specific question about their job or business. The CARES Act was passed with the goal of ensuring small businesses, non-profits, tribal businesses, and veterans organizations keep folks on their payroll. If your business is struggling because of COVID-19’s impact, you are likely eligible for a Small Business Administration (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program loan. If you use this “loan” to cover the cost of your payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities for an eight-week period, the loan will be forgiven if you keep employees on payroll. During this time of economic uncertainty, it’s crucial businesses utilize this program and keep folks on the payroll.

As of today, you can apply through any existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating in the Paycheck Protection Program.

Small businesses aren’t the only ones being impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Our farmers and ranchers are feeling it too. I’ve taken this period of tele-working to host conference calls with our producer groups like the South Dakota Cattlemen, South Dakota Stockgrowers, and South Dakota Ag & Rural Leadership Alumni. They’ve all told me times are tough. Just like I’m fighting for South Dakota’s small businesses, I’m fighting for our ag producers – that’s why along with 140 Members of Congress, including Senator Thune and Senator Rounds, I led a letter to Secretary Perdue requesting  swift assistance to cattle producers with resources we worked to get included in the CARES Act.

Most of us have never faced times like this before, but when times get tough, South Dakotans get tougher. We will get through this together, and if you need assistance please do not hesitate to contact one of my offices.


Governor Kristi Noem’s Weekly Column: Together, We Can Do This

Together, We Can Do This
By Governor Kristi Noem 

With the COVID-19 situation continuing to be very fluid in South Dakota, it is important for us to remember that this a marathon, not a sprint. In today’s 24/7 news cycle, the information coming at us on TV or social media can easily overwhelm us.

By now, many of you have heard me say that I’m relying on the science, facts, and data to drive the state’s response to the virus. Our team’s decision-making is guided by the realities on the ground in South Dakota, rather than trying to apply a one-size-fits-all approach.

My role with respect to public safety is something I take very seriously. But it’s also important for us to remember that it’s the people themselves who are primarily responsible for their safety. Under our Constitutions at the state and federal levels, the people have expansive freedoms – they are free to exercise their rights to work, worship, and play – or to stay at home, or to conduct social distancing.

Since the middle of February, I have been very clear that our people need to take their responsibility for personal health and safety seriously – that they should be practicing good public hygiene and social distancing.  And, with few exceptions, the people of South Dakota are doing a tremendous job.  We have bent the curve a great deal. We have kept our hospital capacity at a manageable level.  And we continue to push out our peak infection day far into the future.

This is great news, and we must stay the course.

We must remember that the objective here is not to stop the spread of COVID-19; the science tells us that is not possible.  What we are trying to accomplish is to slow the spread, and flatten the curve, so that our people and our healthcare system are not overwhelmed.  This will give us more time to develop successful treatments and, hopefully, an effective vaccine.

South Dakota is not New York City, and our sense of personal responsibility, our resiliency, and our already sparse population density put us in a great position to manage the spread of the virus without needing to resort to the kinds of draconian shutdowns adopted by big coastal cities or even other countries.

Jointly, with Department of Health officials as well as officials from each of the three hospital systems (Avera, Monument Health, and Sanford Health), our team has illustrated exactly what our projections look like for the next several months. Now, given the fluidity of the situation, our estimates are dynamic, not static. As the situation on the ground changes, we will continue to be flexible in our response to that new information.

My team has been thoughtful, strategic, and guided by the science, facts and data from what is happening on the ground here, in South Dakota, since January. These new estimates are a guide. We will continue to refine them as we learn more about this virus and it’s impact on our state.

Again, I want to thank the people of South Dakota for doing everything they have thus far. Together, we will get through this.

[To review our current projections for COVID-19 in South Dakota, please visit Covid.SD.Gov .]