Michael Clark: I Won! Now what?

I know it has been awhile since my last update. The last months of the campaign, the pace really picked up.  Between the door knocking, attending events, and standing on street corners sign waving it has really been busy.  All the hard worked paid off because after hours of waiting at the Minnehaha GOP victory party, I got the results and I had won!

Time for the happy dance.


The election is over!  All the signs have been picked up, cleaned, and shrink-wrapped and stored away.  Time to pay the finial bills, then moth-ball the campaign until 2018 season starts up.  This could be sooner rather than later.

Now It time to start being a legislator!  I didn’t have to wait long.  On Saturday, my mailbox was filled, my E-mail inboxes sprang to life. I received congratulation cards, letters and resumes from legislators looking for leadership positions, and stack of invitations to almost every social event in Sioux Falls.   I also received a packet of paperwork from the LRC.

Oh! Wow! There is no chance of my head getting any bigger

Most important was the flowers from my biggest supporter and loudest critic, My lovely bride, Mrs. MCimg_20161110_131803I was getting ready to accept some of the invites when my Facebook messenger popped up with a message from Senator Peters, not to accept any of the invites until the details of Imitated Measure 22 can be sorted out.  What!?!  I checked with a few other current legislators, and the blogs, to get a better feel for what I should be doing.  The general consensus was to not do anything, just to sit tight.  The Executive board, the Governor, The Attorney General and a few others were already working on a solution.  Meanwhile I sit here with a fist full of invites I can’t do anything with.  The worst part is, these groups have information I need to be able to do my job as a legislator.  It is like having a library card, but not able to read any of the books.

I also got notice of the Caucus elections, along with a gently worded warning to keep everything hush, hush.   I really don’t know how much I can release, and when I can release it.  I have to work with these ladies and gentlemen, and I will need their support in the coming months.  So, I’m sorry, Pat, I kept my keyboard on silent.  I wish I could say the same for my cell phone.  The Republican House Caucus Social dinner was held on November 18th, with the elections held on the 19th.  There was a bit of snow on the evening of the 17th that made a real mess of the roads east of Mitchell.  Long story short, it was white knuckle driving from Sioux Falls to Mitchell, and even after Mitchell it was best to keep your wits about you.   During this drive time I received about five phone calls from various legislators, each one looking to sway my vote one way or another.  Thank goodness for the Bluetooth headset so I can keep my hands on the wheel and my eyes on, well, where I think the road should be.  I also received a number of text messages from various people checking on my progress, including If I gone in the ditch yet.

The social dinner was a quick hand shake and this is who I am, then move on.  Not really enough time to really get to know someone.  I have been advised that what happens in the Caucus, stays in the Caucus, Therefore, I’m not going to tell, so please don’t ask.

I did get a chance to wonder a bit around the capitol and get a feel for where everything is at.   There were a few groups decorating trees for Christmas at the Capitol.img_20161119_115019995_hdr img_20161119_115013449 img_20161119_115322622 img_20161119_115216678

My next taste will the Governor’s Budget address on December 6th with some additional training on the 7th.


I have been told that for this budget address I will be seated somewhere on the floor of this chamber.

More updates to come …

13 thoughts on “Michael Clark: I Won! Now what?”

  1. When you get home in March and finally get to sit down and relax I am betting that you say to yourself; “What the Hell did I get myself into!”
    Especially this year!!! 🙂

  2. I always get a kick out elected officials addressed as “The Honorable John Doe”. It feels like an implication that elected officials are superior to those who elected them (or didn’t vote for them).

    Thankfully, there are no laws which require anyone to address said elected officials as “The Honorable …” I refused to use that distinction when communicating with this state’s federal or state elected officials. They’re no better than the rest of the common folks.

    1. You’re looking at it all wrong. That title isn’t met to convey superiority, but respect. We call judges “your honor” and clergy “reverend” because they convey respect for the position. Although the tradition comes from England where they have many different titles based on the level of the office, in the US every public official from the President down to the local mayor has the same manner of address. If titles were about being better than someone else, that wouldn’t be the case.

    2. “The Honorable” is nothing more than a polite way of addressing someone. No, it is not required. I hope you enjoy your smugness in refusing to use the term. It is a way to be polite and nothing more. I have been addressed in mail by “the honorable …..” before. I did not take from it a feeling that the people sending me the mail thought I was superior to them. Just polite.

      1. It must be terribly miserable to be you, duggersd. A title befitting your sour personality would be Your Royal Hind End.

        Judges are appointed and uphold the law. Clergy are selected by a church to serve the congregation. To lead the church in worshipping God. Two very different positions when compared to elected officials who chose to place their names on the ballot.

        They are public servants by choice and are no better than someone who is well off financially or someone who is homeless.

        1. Actually, being me is a good thing. Having a sour personality is not something people say about me. I really don’t know where you are coming from on this. But in any case, I hope you do not break your neck when you sit down. And enjoy your smugness.

  3. Michael, you will soon feel like you’re reliving the first day of high school. The good news is their are no locker combinations to memorize. Enjoy your time. Not many South Dakotans have the privilege of doing what you are doing.

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