Half the Sioux Falls City Council & Mayor dying on the Plurality hill

I’ve seen certain members of our city council die on some pretty stupid hills over the past decade, but defending a majority vote for city councilors in a probable runoff, a previous 20 year rule, that changed in a sneaky amendment move by a couple of outgoing councilors that had indigestion that day is pretty lame.

The other 4 councilors (who were awake for the working session) have a solution. If you are too chickensh*t to change the rule with a basic vote of the council, we will leave it up to the citizens (who most of them don’t even know it changed or what the rule was to begin with);

“You saw how we’re split on this issue and how it should be handled, so let’s let the people of Sioux Falls decide,” Starr told the Argus Leader Wednesday.

Besides the fact that the rule worked for 20 years, most ‘intelligent’ people know that by pushing for runoffs in a council race you will eliminate grassroots candidates who won’t have the money, time or resources to run the full race. It will also cost the taxpayers more for an election that will only draw a ‘fake’ majority. This is really why councilors Erpenbach and Rolfing pushed for this, they don’t want ‘regular’ folks running for council, they only want those connected to the ‘club’. If you have ever noticed, the council candidates that are recruited by the elite in town (Soehl, Selberg, etc.) are usually shrews for big development and do little to improve the lives of the working class of our city. They contribute very little to us, and a lot to their campaign contributors. Grassroots candidates (who are lucky enough to win) represent the citizenry.

Neither Soehl or Selberg say they’re eager to revisit the issue. Soehl said he’s interested in what the public’s feelings are, but a special election could be seen as another attempt to tinker with election rules.

“I certainly want to follow the wishes of the public, but what I object to a bit is the council trying to change election standards every two years,” he said. “

Blah, Blah, Blah. The rule was in place for 20 years! The rule change hasn’t even been used yet. No harm, no foul. Change it back, most people wouldn’t even know it was changed for two years since it hasn’t even been used. I know Curt, you forgot to mention that in your statement.

Selberg questions the need to hold a special election considering the council set the majority standard in 2017 and debated the matter once again just this month.

“We still need to let this breathe a little bit before we’re out there trying to change it again,” he said.

Breathe about what? A rule change that hasn’t even been used and was fine for 20 years without ONE SINGLE CITIZEN complaint! Just because Rolfing forgot his TUMS for a council meeting is no reason to change a 20 year rule that has worked well.

I hate to use the words ‘Brain Dead’ but sometimes I wonder. Why die on this hill?


#1 D@ily Spin on 02.28.19 at 7:54 am

Present policy works. The city needs an active engaged council. Terms on the council could become nothing but expensive runoff elections. Then we will have but one dictator mayor without a council except for Tuesday happy hour unelected Club David representatives.

#2 IDK on 02.28.19 at 2:05 pm

No one is dying on the hill because it is a non issue for most people. Plurality leads to candidates that are more extreme and do not represent the majority. Most of us want a candidate that can pull 51% not 34%.

#3 l3wis on 02.28.19 at 2:19 pm

IDK, you know most of the city councilors have been voted in by plurality when there is more than 2 of them in a race including Erpenbach and Rolfing. The school board works on plurality and so does our county commission and state legislators. So you are saying all of these people are ‘extreme’? LOL. As for the run-off and the ‘majority’ vote, that is really a fake majority, because usually less voters show up for a runoff.

#4 IDK on 02.28.19 at 3:45 pm

Most were voted in by plurality yes, that was the old law, so your statement is very much stating the obvious. Good job. Let’s call it the Staggers affect: a strong enough following to make the run off, but not enough for 51%. It is more likely to eliminate those candidates that are just loud, opinionated, no voters, or have just enough name recognition to squeak in. It will hopefully lead to more mainstream candidates. Let’s equate extreme to those that are outside the 51%. Pick a different word if you like to describe them.

It really doesn’t matter because it is non issue for almost everyone. Now we get vote our opinion on the best candidate twice. That seems like double democracy for the people. If you choose to vote is a whole different issue.

#5 l3wis on 02.28.19 at 3:59 pm

Hey, McFly, the rule was in place for 20 years with ZERO complaints about it from the public. If the public thought ‘extremist’ candidates were being elected, they would have had 20 years to change it, but they didn’t. Doesn’t that say something? I think you could argue that most of the councilors are extremists on one level or another. Some are extremely hard workers and honest, some are extremely lazy and liars.

#6 l3wis on 02.28.19 at 5:01 pm

I also wanted to mention that when Staggers ran against Quen Be De Knudson he got around 60% of the vote while De spent about 5x more money than Staggers.

#7 Blasphemo on 03.01.19 at 2:42 pm

Erickson, Kiley, Selberg, and PTH ought swallow some pride and pay more heed to Councilor Brekke’s wise counsel as demonstrated in the plurality ordinance she proffered. Brekke has more municipal executive-level experience than all the rest put together. She is highly educated in studying matters of regulation (law), and is a licensed legal practitioner. To remain mute and unresponsive before voting against her well-researched assertions, is the epitome of indifference, petty retribution, adolescent contrariness and passive-aggressive behavior.

#8 l3wis on 03.01.19 at 3:30 pm

Blas, would you like to be my editor? I can’t pay you though, because if I did, you would have to get credentials . . . wait . . . 🙂

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