Entries Tagged 'Elections' ↓

Returning the Plurality back to Sioux Falls City Council races ‘Should’ be a snap

Mayor TenHaken told the Argus that he hopes he doesn’t have to break a tie Tuesday night over changing back a 20 year old rule that served the citizens and city council just fine.

I agree, he should not have to. While I can’t predict if it will pass or not, I do think it will come down on a 5-3 vote. And it should.

It’s obvious that Stehly, Starr and Brekke support changing it back. While that is 3 votes, shouldn’t the other 2 they need be a piece of cake? Erickson and Neitzert voted against the change almost two years ago. Why? Because the process wasn’t broken.

Now some have argued that this should be up to the voters. I suppose, and if you believe that, Brekke has offered that this be looked at by the Charter Revision Commission for the 2020 ballot. But as we all know, it wasn’t broken and should not have been changed to begin with.

While Erickson and especially Neitzert have argued that they don’t want to be messing with city elections, this would be a perfect reason to change it back to as it was, unharmed for 20 years.

In the last election, there was a city council run-0ff, but it still would have occurred under the old ordinance, because neither DeBoer or Soehl received the 34% plurality. Another reason why the change was not needed.

I don’t expect the votes of Rex Rolfing Jr. (Kiley) or Selberg (who probably doesn’t even understand the math) or Soehl (who sold his soul to Erpenbach and Huether a long time ago) to change. But I would expect Erickson and Neitzert to hold their votes like Starr, Stehly and Brekke did on the 2nd go around on the Elmwood street vacation.

But I’m not holding my breath.

Sioux Falls Voter Analysis; More to Come

Cameraman Bruce has been crunching the latest numbers when it comes to ‘Likely’ voters in Sioux Falls. While we have much more data coming, some of the early results show of the approximately 17,000 consistent households that vote, only 3,000 are in Lincoln County. For all the talk of a “fast’ growing Lincoln County, the Sioux Falls resident voters still don’t like to vote in local elections.

It also seems that $100K VOTE YES for Schools campaign was able to encourage a lot of first time voters or people who rarely vote.

MORE TO COME!

News Growl follows up on Deb Peters

Oh the web the SD GOP likes to weave;

What is more, the closing date for applications was November 9th – just three days after Peters won her election.

For her account of events to make sense Peters must therefore have three highly eventful days between November 6th-9th: Over a 72 hour period she must have discovered a well-publicized job she was unaware of, made a sudden decision to not take the seat she had just won an election for, and then rushed an application for a position she lacked some of the qualifications for as listed in the ad (such as a degree in marketing, communications, or similar field).

Meanwhile, the people of District 9 are preparing for two years of representation in the State House by a politician they did not elect. Or as Scott L. Ehrisman wrote in his South Dacola blog: “Once again a fake incumbent will be appointed by a Republican elect governor.”

Seems like a busy 3 days, even for a savvy Gipper like Peters.

The Secret of the $300 million dollar School Bond revealed

Many asked why the Sioux Falls School District needed a $50 million dollar ‘slush fund’ in the bond. I knew why, and it seems some of that is being revealed;

The district’s school board approved a contract Wednesday with Koch Hazard Architects to expand and renovate Memorial Middle School’s music area.

Yes, this is the same firm that went millions over budget on the Pavilion, screwed up the balcony and was in the middle of the siding settlement fiasco at the Denty. Rumor has it that they have gone millions over budget on their own projects also.

Why do we continue to throw public money at a firm who consistently squanders our money?

I guess this explains the ‘slush fund’. The SFSD district had to prepare themselves for the cost overruns. They could save taxpayers even more if they would just hire a firm that is qualified and has some fiscal restraint.

Speaking of the extreme ignorance of our educational wing of SF government, they finally put stricter rules on open enrollment. Something that should have been done 10 years ago and definitely before the bond vote. The boundaries should have also been redrawn.

But hey, when you have a $50 million dollar slush fund, it doesn’t matter if you make bad decisions, borrowed tax payer money can fix anything.

Undervotes show many SD voters either don’t know or don’t care

From Cameraman Bruce;

Post-election, I always like to look at how campaign messages get out to the voters and how it encourages them to actually vote in an election. As a resolutions board judge for many elections, I am always surprised how many people go to the polling place and then just turn in an empty ballot. My guess this year, from the statistics so far provided, shows .7% of the voters didn’t want to vote. I know it’s not exact because of the way people mark ballots but from experience, the fact that Noem – Sutton race has the lowest under vote shows people wanted to actually vote.

Under votes are lost opportunities for campaigns. I like to look at this to determine what might have worked or not. Would closing the campaign under vote have made the difference for the losing effort? This year, I don’t see any race loses to blame on under votes.

Now, I’d like to know the number of provisional ballots attempted.

I didn’t expect anything to change Tuesday Night

As I joked with friends Monday night, no matter the results Tuesday, we will still be a heavily red state on Wednesday morning, or at least led by them.

But let’s focus on the positive to start out with;

Cameraman Bruce and I ran another successful campaign and got a Democratic candidate elected in a pretty conservative district. Another notch in the winner’s column for us. Woot! Woot! The candidate also busted their ass getting bi-partisan support. Democrats can win in this state, but they must follow a stringent strategy and keep it simple.

Congrats to Kelly Sullivan (House D13) who ran an amazing direct mail and ground game campaign, I also think the assistance of LEAD helped her defeat Rex Rolfing. A do nothing, two-term Sioux Falls city councilor. Hopefully we will never see his name on a ballot ever again. I joked with someone last night, “If Rex wins by only 35% of the vote, will he feel bad he didn’t get a 50+1 majority?” LOL. It’s time the SF City Council overturns his horrible idea.

LEAD also probably helped Erin Healy get elected, and Kasey Olivier get within 28 votes of beating Blake Curd. I expect there will be a challenge in that race. Curd needs to go bye bye.

IM 25 failed. It was a bad idea from the beginning. I’m hoping (but not holding my breath) that the legislature will find a way to fund Tech education thru a scholarship fund, funded by the industries that use and need tech workers. The Legislature also needs to work on making apprenticeships easier so graduating HS students can skip tech school all together and start working and training in a field right away without tuition debt.

Nothing changed on the Minnehaha County Commission with Beninga, Heiberger and Barth getting re-elected. Let’s see if they all serve out their new terms.

And now for the crap;

IM 24 passed. Which proves to me many voters are ignorant to our US Constitution. Money is free speech and it can come from anywhere. This measure will be challenged in court and will essentially be dead.

Amendment W failed, which surprised me. I guess South Dakotans like our ‘F’ rating of our very corrupt legislature.

As if we didn’t learn anything from Jason Gant as our SOS, we elected one of the most unqualified AG’s in the history of our State. Ravnsborg will clog our prisons with addicts, give little to no treatment to them and most likely run the office as a partisan hack. This will prove to be one of the worst decisions voters in SD made in a very long time.

Dusty winning the House race is no surprise. He ran a high energy, positive campaign. I think the Bjorkman campaign was positive to, but there wasn’t a clear message. As I told Dusty in an email before the election, while I appreciated the campaign he ran, I disagree entirely with his philosophies. On a positive note, for at least the next two years with a Democratically controlled Congress, Dusty will accomplish very little, but maybe he will get to witness a historic impeachment of a president.

As I am disappointed in Noem being elected, it shouldn’t surprise us. I voted for no one in that race. The GOP hate machine was in full swing from the Noem and Ravsborg campaigns, they proved negative campaigning works. Even if Sutton and Seiler would have been successful, we would still be living in a very red state.

South Dakota’s new motto should be ‘Two Steps forward, Three Steps back.”

South DaCola Election Predictions

I’m probably completely off on my predictions but here’s my best shot;

District 13 House

Peterson & Sullivan

District 9 House

SABA and Peters

Minnehaha County Commission

Heiberger, Barth and Gronoli

Attorney General

Seiler (While there hasn’t been any polling on this, I think it will be a close race. With all of the experience that Seiler has, I just don’t see how Jason can beat him).

US Congress

Johnson

Governor

Tie (I know that is cop out, but I’m having trouble calling this one. A few days ago I would have given it to Noem, but I just think it is too close to call).

Amendments and Initiatives

‘W’ Passes, all others fail (but I think all of the measures will be very close)

Qualifications?

Why didn’t the SD ACLU look into the SFSD bond election?

Hoorah! The SD ACLU is going to give you a ride to the polls. Yet, they have no intention to investigate those same polls.

We told the ACLU before the school bond vote that the election should be looked into, especially how district employees were using taxpayer resources to promote a YES vote.

No response.

We told them about having NO precincts in the Northern part of the SFSD.

No response.

We told them that the election could be held with the general election (which would save taxpayers money) and use all available precincts.

No response.

We told them that the E-Poll books don’t work and super precincts are a way to sway the vote.

No response.

After the election we discovered that IPC employees, mostly Finance Department counted the vote. NO independent volunteers, NO teachers and NO poll watchers.

No response.

If the ACLU wants to promote fair, equal and open elections, they would be investigating the school bond vote. But they haven’t.

Why?

My guess is because it is about the free public education of kids. Which I would agree. But this wasn’t about the education of children, this was about running an election above board. We don’t know if it was, because the key piece of evidence that the ACLU could pressure to get, the ballots, are being withheld from us for 60 days.

Ironically the $300 million in bond debt doesn’t educate one single child, it doesn’t even raise teacher pay. Almost 75% of it goes towards East Coast bond investors and the rest to contractors who build the buildings.

If the ACLU wants to promote equality during elections, I would agree. This is why they should use their resources to look into the school bond election.

Stehly endorses Barth & Heiberger on MCC

Stehly says,

“Jeff Barth and Cindy Heiberger care about the average Minnehaha County residents. I have enjoyed working with both of them and appreciate their respectful attitude toward those they serve.”