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The Leftist’s Guide to Election 2014

Oct 29, 2014

As of this writing, well over 30,000 South Dakotans have cast their ballots in the 2014 general election. So for 6 percent of our registered voters, this guide is moot. The rest of you may be so tired of campaign ads and speeches that you just want to vote and be done with it.

No problem: I'll keep my guide short and sweet. Here are the tightest, mostly leftist reasons I can offer for marking the correct answers on your general election ballot.

Initiated Measure 17, requiring health insurers to include any willing and qualified provider in their networks: Opponents have characterized IM 17 as “another mandate with more government control over health care.” However, IM 17 doesn't lay a mandate on anyone other than insurers, who have to accept any physician who meets their standards into their networks. You, Mr. and Ms. South Dakota, get more control over which doctor you see. IM 17 may save you money and a trip to Sioux Falls. Vote YES.

Initiated Measure 18, raising South Dakota's minimum wage: The labor and liberty of even the lowest-skilled worker is worth more than $7.25 an hour. Be moral, help workers pay their bills, and stimulate the economy. Vote YES.

Amendment Q, allowing roulette, keno, and craps in Deadwood: No part of a noble constitution should include the word crap. Schoolkids will giggle. Besides, I hear the  high-rollers from Asia want to play baccarat. Send this amendment back to the drafters and demand an amendment giving this picayune authority to the Legislature. Vote NO.

Constitutional Offices: We Dems can only offer you candidates for three of the six. To check crony-corporatist excesses of one-party rule in Pierre, elect those three Democrats, Denny Pierson for Treasurer, David Allen for Public Utilities Commission, and Angelia Schultz for Secretary of State. Of the Libertarian alternatives for the other three offices, consider Kurt Evans for Auditor, in the hopes that he might show more interest in finding any missing EB-5 money or e-mails. John English quit the School and Public Lands race on Sept. 13, so you're stuck with Ryan Brunner. For Attorney General, incumbent Marty Jackley has major flaws, but he is the only person on the ballot qualified to do the job.

Governor: Rep. Susan Wismer says public education needs a champion in Pierre. This week Gov. Daugaard made clear he'd rather cheer for private schools, making a blatantly specious comparison between academic achievement at O'Gorman and Sioux Falls' public schools. Strong public education is crucial to democracy. Vote Wismer.

U.S. House: Corinna Robinson would raise the federal minimum wage, protect Head Start, and oppose the Keystone XL pipeline. Rep. Kristi Noem is essentially a GOP spokesmodel who advocates cuts to food stamps after her family enjoyed millions in farm subsidies. Such hypocrisy ought to have consequences. Vote Robinson.

U.S. Senate: The people running South Dakota's EB-5 program broke laws, dodged taxes, and enriched themselves at public expense. Mike Rounds didn't just fail to notice such corruption; he rewarded it as governor and defends it as a candidate today. The last person we need in Washington is another Senator prone to corruption. For a commitment to honest, smart government, vote Rick Weiland.

I could easily say another 600 words about each candidate and each issue. I'll bet you can, too: I invite your 600 words (or 60, or six) in the comment section. Fire away, and vote Tuesday!

Editor's Note: Cory Heidelberger is our political columnist from the left. For a conservative perspective on politics, please look for columns by Dr. Ken Blanchard on this site. 

Cory Allen Heidelberger writes the Madville Times political blog. He grew up on the shores of Lake Herman. He studied math and history at SDSU and information systems at DSU, and has taught math, English, speech, and French at high schools East and West River.


08:11 am - Wed, November 5 2014
dave tunge said:
The labor and liberty of even the lowest-skilled worker is worth more than $7.25 an hour.

While I might agree mostly with that statement Cory there are some who that does not apply to.......but what I can't understand is why the general public can dictate to business owners what they have to pay their employees. If they have that power what is to say they don't raise the minimum wage to $20 or $30.
They have no skin in the game but can make decisions that may curtail or devastate businesses. This is just not right.......but I understand why this initiative passed. Who wouldn't vote to increase minimum wage? Nothing out of the voters pocket. They don't benefit or get hurt.
Some issues are best left (dare I say this) to our Legislature who has some business sense.

10:13 am - Mon, November 10 2014
Dave, what's to say they don't raise the minimum wage to $20 or $30 is the empirical evidence of the last several decades of minimum-wage legislation in which they haven't.

What individuals do not deserve the same minimum wage for their sacrifice of an hour's liberty, an hour's time with their family, an hour's time to follow their wishes instead of the orders of a boss?

The Legislature has less skin in the wages game than every voter in South Dakota. Every South Dakota business owner registered to vote had the chance to vote on IM 18. Why leave that choice to the Legislature exclusively?

And if you can argue that "some issues" are best left to the Legislature, what's to stop you from saying all issues are better left to the Legislature? What criteria do you apply to determine the propriety of a democratic vote rather than a republican legislative authority?
06:03 pm - Mon, November 10 2014
dave tunge said:
Why then don't South Dakotan's vote for a healthy increase in teacher salaries?
We all want that.
Business owners hire employees. It should be their exclusive right to pay what they determine is a fair wage. Job applicants not willing to accept that should go somewhere else.

Voting for a minimum wage increase is like voting for Mom and apple pie. Kinda like voting for world peace or a Republican midterm landslide.

My point is that it should not be an issue that can be legislated or initiated. It should be a supply and demand issue. Law dictates that large businesses provide health insurance for their employees........why not small businesses? Because it would be a hardship. Same with wages for some businesses.

And I disagree with your second paragraph. Is working a sacrifice? Is it a right?'s a responsibility that conscious folks have to provide for themselves and their families. People don't deserve jobs ( or minimum wages). If they are diligent and hard working they'll never have to worry about a job or a minimum wage.

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