Election Day arrives for SD voters

The run-up to a highly anticipated election in both South Dakota and across the country comes to a close today with Election Day finally here. Hanging in the balance is a hotly contested governor's race, a battle for Congress, key races in the st...


The run-up to a highly anticipated election in both South Dakota and across the country comes to a close today with Election Day finally here.

Hanging in the balance is a hotly contested governor's race, a battle for Congress, key races in the state Legislature and for statewide positions, and some controversial ballot measures in the state of South Dakota.

Across the state, polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Four polling sites will be open in Davison County, and all city of Mitchell residents will cast their ballots at the Corn Palace.

Voters in the town of Ethan, along with Rome and Tobin Townships, will vote at Ethan Town Hall. The Mount Vernon Senior Center will be the polling place for voters in the city of Mount Vernon, along with Baker, Blendon, Mount Vernon and Union townships. The following townships will vote at the Davison County Fairgrounds, located at 3200 W. Havens Ave.: Badger, Beulah, Lisbon, Mitchell, Perry and Prosper.

Voters in line at 7 p.m. when the polls close are allowed to cast a ballot. A photo ID is required to vote in South Dakota. In Mitchell, Palace Transit will be providing free rides to the polls. Those interested can call 995-8440 for more information.


The following candidates are on the ballot in Davison County:

• U.S. Representative: George Hendrickson, Libertarian from Sioux Falls; Dusty Johnson, Republican from Mitchell; Tim Bjorkman, Democrat from Canistota; Ron Wieczorek, Independent from Mount Vernon.

• Governor: The candidates include: Libertarian Kurt Evans, of Wessington Springs, joined by running mate Richard Shelatz; Republican Kristi Noem, of Castlewood, joined by running mate Larry Rhoden; Democrat Billie Sutton, of Burke, joined by running mate Michelle Lavallee.

• Secretary of State: Two candidates are on the ballot, with Republican Steve Barnett, of Pierre, taking on Democrat Alexandra Frederick, of Okreek. Barnett has served as the state's auditor since 2010.

• Attorney General: The two candidates include Republican Jason Ravnsborg, of Yankton, and Democrat Randy Seiler, of Fort Pierre. The seat is being vacated by Marty Jackley.

• State Auditor: The two candidates include Republican Rich Sattgast, of Pierre, and Democrat Tom Cool, of Sioux Falls. Sattgast served as the state's auditor from 2003-11 and has been the state treasurer since 2011.

• State Treasurer: The candidates include Republican Josh Haeder, of Huron against Democrat Aaron Matson, of Sioux Falls.

• Commissioner of School and Public Lands: The race includes Republican incumbent Ryan Brunner, of Pierre, against Democrat Woody Houser, of Beresford.


• Public Utilities Commissioner: Republican incumbent Kristie Fiegen, of Sioux Falls, is challenged by Democrat Wayne Frederick, of Okreek.

• District 20 state Senator: Voters can choose between Republican incumbent Josh Klumb, of Mount Vernon, or Democrat Dan Miller, of Mitchell.

• District 20 state Representative: Voters can choose up to two candidates to fill the open seats between Republicans Paul Miskimins and Lance Koth, and Democrats Ione Klinger and Jim Schorzmann, all of Mitchell.

The following items are "Yes" or "No" issues, with a "Yes" vote being recorded as a vote in the affirmative for the ballot issue. A "No" vote on the ballot issues would leave South Dakota law as is.

• State Supreme Court retention: Justice Janine M. Kern, who represents the First Supreme Court District, is up for retention. Needing a simple majority, a "Yes" vote would retain Kern to the court for the next eight years, while a "No" vote would be against her retention.

• Constitutional Amendment W: An initiated amendment to the state's constitution changing campaign finance and lobbying laws, creating a government accountability board and changing certain initiative and referendum provisions.

• Constitutional Amendment X: An amendment to the state's constitution increasing the number of votes needed to approve a constitutional amendment from a simple majority of the people (50-plus percent) to 55 percent.

• Constitutional Amendment Z: An amendment to the state's constitution that would limit proposed amendments to one subject only, and requiring proposed amendments to be presented separately.


• Initiated Measure 24: A measure to prohibit contributions to ballot question committees from non-residents, out-of-state political committees and entities that are not filed with the South Dakota Secretary of State.

• Initiated Measure 25: A vote to consider increasing the state's tobacco tax and creating a postsecondary technical institute fund for the purposes of lowering student tuition and supporting South Dakota's technical schools.


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