GOP Candidates Speak at Lincoln Day Dinner

By Dan Bechtold, Editor

Republican political candidates seeking the governor’s office, a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives and attorney general spoke at the Tripp Country Lincoln Day Dinner on April 9 in Winner.

Kristi Noem, who is now serving in Congress, is running for governor.

She is a believer in term limits. When she was elected in 2010 she said she was not going to stay in Washington, D.C., for 10 years. “I have worked hard and it now time to come home,” she said.

Noem noted that South Dakota does a lot of things right. However, wages are not going up and businesses are not expanding. “We need to change that. I am passionate about reforms we need to make in South Dakota,” she said.

Noem wants people who are welfare programs to go back to work. “We need to set the example for the nation. We have thousands of empty jobs in this state and we need people to fill them. It will help them and their families be more successful in the future,” she explained.

The candidate noted South Dakota is making headlines for scandals, mismanagement, million dollar lawsuits. “That needs to change. We need to bring integrity into our state government and more transparency for our taxpayers,” she said.

Noem noted it is important taxpayers trust their state government.

Attorney General Marty Jackley is also a candidate for governor. He was unable to attend the banquet as he is in Washington, D.C., preparing to argue a case before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Megan Assman of Winner, East River director for the Jackley campaign, spoke on behalf of the candidate. Assman gave Jackley’s background and what he has done for South Dakota as attorney general.

Three GOP candidates for attorney general spoke. John Fitzgerald is the state’s attorney in Lawrence County. He talked about solving the methamphetamine problem in the state.

We need to increase our efforts in education, rehabilitation and law enforcement,” he said.

Jason Ravnsborg of Yankton, is a lawyer also seeking the post of attorney general. He is also a Lt. col. in the Army Reserves.
Lance Russell, a legislator, is also seeking the attorney general post. The last two years he was responsible for the attorney general bills in the legislature.

He says the state needs a much stronger conflict of interest law.

The three Republican candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives also spoke at the dinner.

Speaking were Dusty Johnson, a former member of the PUC; Secretary of State Shantel Krebs and Neil Tapio, a state legislator from Watertown.

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