A bizarre campaign finance report for a proposed Ballot Measure filing was made with the Secretary of State’s office from a new group calling itself “Consistent South Dakota.”
As filed yesterday by convicted drug felon Bob Newland and Sioux Falls antique store owner Andrew Ziegler, the group is ostensibly indicating that they’ve organized the campaign effort to punish South Dakotans for not legalizing pot by limiting the amount of alcohol and tobacco that they can purchase, creating felony penalties for serving alcoholic beverages.
According to the filing made with the Secretary of State’s office:
The filing indicates that “We intend to bring So. Dak. law into closer adherence tp (sic) common sense. The State Should not profit from the legal transfer of two deadly drugs, while punishing the transfer of benign herbs.” According to the pro-pot legalization group SouthDakotaNorml.org, an organization ran by Newland, the “deadly drugs” they’re referring to are alcohol and tobacco.
The language used in the measures notes:
Section 1. No person or business may transfer an alcoholic beverage, as defined in SDCL 35-1-1, containing more than one per-cent ethyl alcohol to another person or business in the State of South Dakota. It is a Class 1 misdemeanor to transfer two ounces or less of an alcoholic beverage containing more than one per-cent ethyl alcohol. It is a Class 6 felony to transfer more than two ounces but less than one-half pound of an alcoholic beverage containing more than one per-cent ethyl alcohol. It is a Class 5 felony to transfer one-half pound but less than one pound of an alcoholic beverage containing more than one per-cent ethyl alcohol. It is a Class 4 felony to transfer one to ten pounds of an alcoholic beverage containing more than one per-cent ethyl alcohol. It is a Class 3 felony to transfer more than ten pounds of an alcoholic beverage containing more than one per-cent ethyl alcohol. In addition to any criminal penalty imposed upon conviction of a violation of this section, a civil penalty, not to exceed ten thousand dollars, may be imposed.
Read that here. The measure for Tobacco is identical in language.
According to the language of the measure, it would make serving an alcoholic beverage with 2 oz of alcohol a class 6 felony.
It should not be viewed as a coincidence that the language contained in the measure mirrors the marijuana possession laws which Newland faced at sentencing for his 2009 conviction for possession of 4oz of pot. An amount which the prosecution noted, “was not for personal use,” prior to the judge sentencing him to a year in jail with all but 45 days suspended.
Somehow, this bizarre revenge on the State of South Dakota does not surprise me coming from the guy who threatened to “pour hot urine on my children.” Filing this kind of stupidity, which is going to waste time and tax dollars, seems less an exercise in democracy and more in the realm of being an “attention whore.”
And a good argument in favor of the legislation this past session to make it a little more difficult to bring weirdness to a statewide ballot.