South Dakota Lawmakers Snuffing Out Ethics Reform Referendum – New York Times

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People in South Dakota protested the Republican Legislature’s effort to repeal an ethics reform referendum.

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James Nord/Associated Press

Brutally rejecting the people’s will, South Dakota’s Republican-controlled Legislature is rushing to repeal a vital ethics reform referendum approved by voters in November.

The 52 percent of voters who approved the anticorruption referendum were “hoodwinked by scam artists,” Gov. Dennis Daugaard, a Republican, brazenly insisted, as he promised to sign the repeal. The referendum called for the creation of an independent ethics commission to investigate abuses by statehouse politicians and lobbyists, a public financing option to reduce election spending and a $100 annual limit on lobbyists’ gifts to elected officials.

The…

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