From the RCJ today:
When Gosch filed his nominating petitions last January, an elections official in the secretary of state's office questioned Gosch's use of his own notary. Gosch said the official didn't suggest the petitions were invalid but questioned whether he had notarized his own signature."They did not seek to reject my petitions," Gosch said.
Of course they didn't. Brian Gosch is in line to be Speaker of the SD House. You simply don't cross these guys. However, if you're a Dem, carefully follow a confusing law to the letter and if they can find a reason to disqualify you, you're likely to be off the ballot even before the Madville Times can report it.
This is what happens when one party is in control for more than thirty years. No accountability for those in the leadership. Elected officials are seen displaying disregard for their duties to the citizens of South Dakota, because their real agenda is personal and political, not public service (cf. Sec of State "you can always go to court" Gant).
Back closer to home, I'm still floored that the Republicans of District 32 are such party-line voters that they continue to return these two Party tools to "represent" them. Reps. Gosch and Conzet (and Rep. Lust in 34) are political insiders from East River that are by and for the entrenched Pierre Political Class, and of course, Gosch and Conzet are active members of the corporate-funded right-wing American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). You'd think it would be great to have all this leadership from out here, but we sure haven't seen policies out of Pierre to help struggling West RIver schools and businesses.There's a reason. They dance with those that brung 'em (as Molly Ivins [bless her soul] would say).
Gosch and Conzet were both appointed by Governor Rounds, and have had no serious primary challengers -- apparently District 32 Republicans haven't gotten mad enough to vote Democratic. (As if Dems are in danger of gaining majority power in Pierre, and doing something blazingly radical, like OMG making taxation more fair or decently funding our K-12 education.)
Their seats are so safe, they rarely even make a "show" effort to talk to their constituents outside of Republican Party events and the obligatory, extremely softball cracker-barrel theater. Rep. Conzet has refused to meet with constituents during the session so she can spend that time with her family. She directs constituents that if they want to meet with her, you need to drive to Pierre. (Unless you're a large multinational corporation, and then she'll take a week and come to your ALEC conference and help you write legislation that's bad for South Dakota.) When she is in town, she seems more interested in cooking wild boar (?) than the needs of her district.
This whole thing is just another sign that integrity and competence have very little to do with our West River electoral process. It's about party, it's about money, and it's about connections.
Are you annoyed? There's is something you can do: