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Governor's Column: Decisions Are Made By Those Who Show Up


            Office of Gov. Dennis Daugaard

500 E. Capitol Ave.

Pierre, S.D. 57501






FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  Friday, October 28, 2016

CONTACT:  Tony Venhuizen or Kelsey Pritchard at 605-773-3212


EDITORS/NEWS DIRECTORS:  Please consider the following column from Gov. Dennis Daugaard. For an audio recording of the Governor’s weekly column, visit news.sd.gov/media.aspx and click on “Audio” under “Governor Dennis Daugaard.”



Decisions Are Made By Those Who Show Up


A column by Gov. Dennis Daugaard:


The presidential election is getting most of the attention this election season, but in South Dakota, voters are deciding much more.


Of course, South Dakota has general elections this fall for U.S. Senate, U.S. House and the Public Utilities Commission. We are also voting on ten ballot measures:  constitutional amendments R, S, T, U and V; referred laws 19 and 20; and initiated measures 21, 22 and 23.


One of these measures, Constitutional Amendment R, was passed by the Legislature and is now before the people for ratification. Referred laws 19 and 20 were also passed by the Legislature, and then placed on the ballot by petition. The remaining amendments and initiated measures made the ballot through the petition process.


I encourage all South Dakota voters to study and thoroughly consider these ballot measures before voting this year. Information about all ten ballot measures is available on the Secretary of State’s website at https://sdsos.gov/elections-voting/upcoming-elections/general-information/2016-ballot-questions.aspx.


Many of us have seen the paid television ads and received postcards in the mail. Those can be informative, but paid advertising only tells one side of the story. And while some ballot measures campaigns have backers who are willing to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars to promote their view, other campaigns cannot afford much advertising.


With ten measures on the ballot, voting will take some time. I’d encourage South Dakota voters to consider voting early to avoid the lines. Early voting is available at your county auditor’s office on any business day between now and the day before Election Day.


It’s also a good idea to obtain a sample ballot before voting. Voters can study the issues at home, fill out the sample ballot and then copy their preferences onto the real ballot at the polling place. Sample ballots are printed in the newspaper and are available at the county auditor’s office, and you can also obtain one online from the Secretary of State at https://sos.sd.gov/Elections/VIPLogin.aspx .


Finally, I urge all South Dakota voters to show up and vote this fall. The tone of the presidential campaign can be disheartening, and the political advertisements can be irritating. But as Governor George S. Mickelson often said, “Decisions are made by those who show up.”


As Americans, we have a responsibility to study the candidates and the issues and to cast an informed ballot. We should never take that privilege for granted – not even in a tumultuous election year like this one. We owe it to our children and grandchildren, and to those who have defended our freedom, to show up on Election Day.