Press "Enter" to skip to content

Dakota Poll Finds Daugaard Agenda in Trouble on Ballot Measures

The newest Dakota Poll finds that Governor Dennis Daugaard could get three black eyes at the polls next month. The phone survey of 400 likely South Dakota voters, conducted September 29 and 30, finds the Governor's two signature pieces of legislation losing and a sales tax increase to make up for his neglect of education and Medicaid winning:

  • Referred Law 14, Gov. Daugaard's corporate welfare slush fund plan, loses 34% to 54%.
  • Initiated Measure 15, the extra-penny sales tax to fund K-12 education and Medicaid, wins 67% to 30%.
  • Referred Law 16, Gov. Daugaard's plan to wreck schools with merit pay and teacher evaluations based on standardized tests, loses 52% to 46%.

These results differ notably from the nearly contemporaneous Nielson Brothers Polling data, which found much larger undecided contingents and a slight lead for RL16.

Among the interesting crosstab results, the Dakota Poll finds an answer to DWC's question about where the Tea Party stands on the IM15 tax increase. The Dakota Poll finds that 49% of the self-identifying Tea Partiers support IM15, while only 43% oppose it.

If the results of the Dakota Poll pan out, they will offer a stern rejection of the pro-corporate, anti-tax, anti-teacher agenda Governor Daugaard has staked out in his first two years in the big chair. I hope we get the chance to test how Daugaard would govern facing such repudiation of his policy priorities.


  1. WayneB 2012.10.17

    I heard a very interesting discussion the other day about the 1 penny sales tax - where SD wasn't really guaranteed any additional funding for education; instead the person hypothesized the state legislature would divert existing funds from Medicaid / Education proportional to the funds the new penny should bring in... providing essentially $180M to do whatever the state wants to do with it.

    Is there anything in IM15 that requires the legislature to hold fast existing allocations to Medicaid/Education?

  2. Steve Sibson 2012.10.17

    Too bad that these major issues will be decided by the uninformed and the deceived. The IM15 says that the tax is "only 1 penny". Outright lie, it is at least $180 million. Governor is making robo calls calling RINOs conservatives. Why isn't he telling people we don't need IM15, we just ended FY12 with an extra $47 million? Answer: because he wants the tax to pass and still claim he is a conservative. The Daugaard Deceptions.

  3. Joe 2012.10.17

    I'd be careful citing any poll for any initiative/referendum in South Dakota. Very confusing to read. I'm a college educated political junkie in which it took me 15 minutes to figure out which way I was suppose to vote. Many people just go through and put all yes or all no, or don't vote at all.

  4. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.10.17

    Steve, I strongly doubt Governor Daugaard wants this tax to pass. You cite his lack of campaigning against it, but can you cite active statements saying he's for it?

  5. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.10.17

    Wayne, here's the controlling text in IM15, applied in separate clauses to both the Ed and Med funds::

    "No monies deposited... may be spent in any way, either directly or indirectly, to reduce, supplant, or replace state appropriations for any state... program in existence for state fiscal year 2012."

    That's as tight as the authors could write it. Is that enough? (See SDSOS website for full text.)

  6. grudznick 2012.10.17

    If these two interest groups succeed in repressively raising my food tax by a full 25%, Mr. Sibson's $180,000,000 dollars a year that will only go to them, far more than they got cut, who will next want to raise my taxes to overfill their budget cuts?

    I hope the legislatures pass another law that says "Schools, you take that money and you don't pay a dime for fat cat administrators and reserved parking spaces and you give it all to the best teachers."

    That's what I think they should do. And T Denny and his hospital can pound their share up their noses indeed.

  7. Justin 2012.10.17

    You are an enigma Grudz. Don't you want to vote for a President that will abolish your SS and Medicare? What difference will the penny tax make then?

  8. grudznick 2012.10.17

    Who will abolish my SS and Medicare? I'll probably be dead by then, because I can't afford to buy any more food because the local special interest groups have their gnarled turkey claws much closer to the soft underbelly of my gut than the federal politicians.

  9. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.10.17

    You really have trouble thinking of anyone other than yourself, don't you, Grudz?

  10. Joe 2012.10.17

    Not to be that guy Grudz, but they are going to get it from you 1 way or another. Either through a state wide penny tax or through a local opt out. They have only what doubled? Trippled? in the last 10 years.

    I'll agree that some schools spend money like drunken idiots and then go asking for a large opt out. But that is a local issue. There are plenty of schools that spend rightfully, don't over pay administration and then still don't have enough.

  11. grudznick 2012.10.17

    Mr. H, I can't expect State Secretary Gant, President Obama, or the Lake Madville Water and Sewer Commission to watch out for me, so I have to do it myself, sir.

  12. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.10.17

    Horsehockey, Grudz. If you move to Lake Herman, I guarantee I will look out for your health and welfare with respect to wastewater treatment issues just as I do for every other citizen. I won't walk your dog or spoonfeed you your gravy, but I will make sure your neighbors don't build a bad septic system that drains crap into your well.

  13. caheidelberger Post author | 2012.10.17

    I'll also keep educating kids as rigorously as I can to make sure they are ready to be the kind of responsible citizens who will help take care of you in your old age. Invest more in K-12 education, and I can do that job even better.

  14. Justin 2012.10.17

    I say give Grudz a voucher so he can understand what turkey claws feel like.

  15. WayneB 2012.10.17

    Thanks Cory.

    I realize I don't have a law degree, but I'm not certain it does...

    If it binds the legislature to fund all education programs currently in existence for FY 2012, then doesn't that mean we cannot end (and subsequently remove funding for) any education program which turns out to be a really bad idea (HB 1234, for instance)? That seems to really tie our hands.

    What happens if we have another structural deficit? The IM (I think) indicates we should make it up in the next year... but if we have multiple years of state revenues below 2012 levels, we're violating aspects of the state constitution, are we not? At minimum, it would force the state to either drastically raise taxes to recoup funds, or force the state to provide nothing but education & health funding...

    In any case, do any of us really think the next legislative session wouldn't simply amend the law to remove sections 3 & 4? Call me cynical, but when you have a single party pretty much in control, and the citizens are offering to give more taxes, they'll find a way to spend them on what they want one way or another.

  16. Joe 2012.10.17

    It wouldn't surprise me if the law passes if someone (probably a GOPer, quite possible one from the Governors office) will float a plan to try to get at the money. However I just don't see it happening. If the law passes and the money is given, it would look pretty bad if they are robbing it, especially right away.

  17. Stan Gibilisco 2012.10.17

    "Initiated Measure 15, the extra-penny sales tax to fund K-12 education and Medicaid, wins 67% to 30%."

    I'm amazed. I can only conclude that this result, if valid, reflects a general trust in state government on the part of the citizens ... trust that the legislature will not, in fact, throw the extra money into the general fund at some future point, far enough in the future so that people forget what that extra penny was originally intended for.

    What do you think, Cory? Do trust those Republicans to keep that extra penny flowing to Medicaid and the schools?

  18. grudznick 2012.10.17

    Rob it they will, Joe. Eventually they will bite back at the special interests, chop them off at the kneeballs and reform the purpose of the money to go to whatever they want. Mr. H's best hope is that his party takes control of the legislatures before then and hope they wouldn't do that. Odds on that?

  19. WayneB 2012.10.17

    I don't know, Joe... It'd be pretty easy to get it passed in an omnibus bill.

    A legislature which is willing to pass some constitutionally-questionable anti-abortion legislation, is willing to pass HB 1234, and is willing to cut education funding by $77M is probably also willing to find a way to get at that money.

    Remember how lottery funds were meant to go only to education? How's that working?

    Can I afford to pay extra in sales tax? Yeah, I suppose. Is it right to ask half the population to pay a not insignificant additional contribution? I'm not so sure.

  20. Linda 2012.10.18

    What happened to the many people who were trying to get sales tax on food and other necessities repealed a few years ago? Except for one group that Cory previously mentioned, where is the outcry from these people?

    What happens if this passes, and then those same people start protesting an increased, in their minds regressive, tax, and get all sales tax on necessities repealed? Maybe this is what they are hoping for. Increase the sales tax and then protest louder and with more justification, and get it repealed on these items.

    Suppose this happens. How much less will IM then take in? How will that less amount compare with the present sales tax amount? I'm not sure how to look this up, but maybe someone else can.

    I do not support IM 15 for the following reasons, among others.
    -- Sales tax takes a larger proportion from the poorer. As stated above, where are the people and groups who loudly opposed ANY sales tax on necessities??
    --The proposed one penny tax increase is NOT 1%, but is a 25% increase, the largest tax increase in state history.
    --This did not go through the legislative process to be vetted and debated.
    --It will be permanent regardless of where state monies might be needed in the future.
    --There is no guarantee that the money will go to higher teacher salaries. It could go to higher administrative salaries instead, or a new sports facility, etc.

  21. Steve Sibson 2012.10.18

    "You cite his lack of campaigning against it, but can you cite active statements saying he's for it?"

    RINOs are not stupid Cory, just misguided. The governor went after the robo callers and promoted RINOs in the primary. Why is he not going after IM15 after we put $47 million into reserves? Because if it passes, he can say the people wanted it not him, as he puts together plans to get it into the pockets of his and his fellow SDGOP Establishment Gestapo campaign donors.

  22. Steve Sibson 2012.10.18

    IM15, the take from the poor and give to the rich measure promoted by lies that use children as political pawns. Want to do something for kids...homeschool them, instead of spending your money on ads using them as victims. From what I am hearing, pro-homeschool advocates like Phil Jensen have SDGOP leadershiop backing his so-called independent opponent.

  23. Steve Sibson 2012.10.18

    If Daugaard wanted to kill IM15 all he has to do is publicly say the extra $47 Million from FY12 that went into reserves will go to K12 plus an additional $47 million plus from FY13 excess revenues.

Comments are closed.