David Lias of the Vermillion Plain Talk jumps on a curious press release from Senator Stanford Adelstein. Here's the main text:
Senator Stan Adelstein who, Sunday, released his letter to the Attorney General asking for an investigation of the Secretary of State's office, notified Attorney General Marty Jackley that Secretary of State Jason Gant appeared at the Senator's office in Rapid City at 4:55 p.m. MDT, Monday, 18 June 2012, asking to see him.
Senator Adelstein asked the receptionist to tell the Secretary that he "did not wish to see him."
"I am not interested in playing political games," Adelstein said. "Chicago-type discussions may be acceptable to the Speaker of the House Val Rasuch, but not to this Senator!" [Senator Stanford Adelstein, press release, 2012.06.19, posted by David Lias]
Whoa. Secretary Gant drove from Pierre to Rapid City to chat with Senator Adelstein? Either it was a slow day at the Capitol (sure, nothing going on but citizens turning in 1829 sheets with 30,000 signatures on the referendum deadline day), or Secretary Gant recognizes the Senator's impeachment talk is more serious than we blog gadflies might have thought.
The rest of the press is certainly paying attention. Mr. Mercer fills in some timeframe and speculates not dismissively on the odds of impeachment. Mr. Lengerich gets Secretary Gant to say on the record that Powers' side job as a political consultant was an inappropriate distraction from his official duties. Mr. Lengerich also gets Rep. Val Rausch to reveal that he did indeed buy political materials from Powers for this year's primary race, in which he received Secretary Gant's unusual public endorsement. The dots are connecting!
Senator Adelstein also includes in his press release the text of two Monday blog posts, mine and Scott Ehrisman's, discussing Senator Adelstein's push to investigate Gant and his lieutenant Pat Powers for possibly improper political activity. The Senator appears inclined to hoist Mr. Powers by the blogospheric petard with which Powers so piqued Adelstein during previous campaigns.
Update 17:51 CDT: Mr. Mercer raises an eyebrow at the timing of Secretary Gant's abortive visit to Senator Adelstein:
Assuming the senator has the time correct, this would have been just 55 minutes after the deadline for referendum petitions to have been filed with the Secretary of State office. How one gets from the second floor of the state Capitol in Pierre, to the senator's office in Rapid City, in a mere 55 minutes is a very good question. Or perhaps Mr. Secretary of State was already on his way west well before the 5 p.m. CDT closing of his state office for the day. As a friend said today, paraphrasing some guy named Imus, "You cannot make this (expletive deleted) up" [Bob Mercer, "The Feud Between Powers and Adelstein—Updated," Pure Pierre Politics, 2012.06.19].
This story is not playing well for the Secretary... and the state Republican convention is this weekend.