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Secretary Krebs Working Late, Working Early

In my post on Chad Haber's violation of campaign finance laws yesterday, I mentioned Bob Mercer's notice that former Secretary of State Jason Gant appears to have been slacking off toward the end of his administration. My commenters are sharing similar observations on Gant's underperformance, which fit with the history of his troubled single term in office.

For what it's worth, the gal who helped show Gant the door, our new Secretary of State Shantel Krebs, appears to determined to work better, stronger, and faster. For today's tiny hopeful anecdote about good public service, I note that Secretary Krebs responded to one of my inquiries with an e-mail last night at 23:24 CST. I rolled out of bed and replied this morning. Secretary Krebs pinged me back at 05:50 CST.

That timeframe means that, at best, Secretary Krebs got six hours and twenty-five minutes of sleep last night, and that public service was the last thing on her mind when she sacked out and the first thing on her mind when she jumped out of bed for another glorious day in the Capitol.

We'll see how things go when we get to our first petition cycle. But for the moment, the Secretary of State's office seems to be in better hands than it was for the last four years.


  1. Jenny 2015.01.23

    Cory, look at Secretary in your heading.

  2. Curt 2015.01.23

    Jenny - that's how the Repubs pronounce it and hence spell it that way.
    Cory - Sending messages early and late does not explain why she chose to re-construct the campaign finance reporting system at the most inconvenient time possible.

  3. crossgrain 2015.01.23

    According to Wikipedia:

    [S]leep deprivation may result in aching muscles, confusion, memory lapses or loss, depression, development of false memory, hallucinations, hand tremor, headaches, malaise, periorbital puffiness (commonly known as "bags under eyes" or eye bags), increased blood pressure, increased stress hormone levels, increased risk of diabetes, increased risk of fibromyalgia, irritability, nystagmus (rapid involuntary rhythmic eye movement), obesity, seizures, temper tantrums in children, yawning, mania, symptoms similar to attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and psychosis.

    Sounds to me like Ms. Krebs is just trying to fit in with everyone else in Pierre.

  4. JeniW 2015.01.23

    Crossgrain, I hope that you are not trying to be negative about Ms. Krebs.

    She is trying fulfill her responsibilities, which seem to be in part, trying to complete the projects that Gant left behind.

    BTW, not everyone requires eight hours of sleep, and not everyone sleeps in eight continuous hours.

  5. crossgrain 2015.01.23

    JeniW - it was less a comment on Ms. Krebs than it was a comment on the general malaise, hallucinations, psychosis, and memory lapses of the entrenched power brokers in our fair capitol.

  6. caheidelberger Post author | 2015.01.23

    Sorry, Jenny! Curt's right—I was subconsciously adopting Secketary Krebs's own pronunciation of her title. :-)

    Curt, I do agree that unplugging the online campaign filing system right now seems ill-timed. The system was working for plenty of candidates, or so I thought. Maybe the system was acting up, eating data, and causing more trouble than it was worth? Or maybe Gant didn't leave a clear manual on how to fix recurring glitches, and Krebs decided that she ahd to preserve the integrity of the process by removing the problematic technology?

  7. caheidelberger Post author | 2015.01.23

    Clever, Crossgrain!

    Krebs does come across as a high-energy gal. I have no idea what her normal sleeping habits are. I hope all of our public servants are able to get all the sleep they need to carry out their duties well.

    But I'll bet there's an argument to be had over who's better at the job: a sleep-deprived Krebs or a fully rested Gant. Any takers on that question?

  8. JeniW 2015.01.23

    I have known Shantel for years, she is one of those high energy, highly motivated people. It is just the way she is.

  9. Todd Epp 2015.01.23

    Dear Cory:

    I appreciate it when our politicians or their staffs get back to us quickly. I've found Gov. Daugaard's staff and Sen. Rounds' staff in particular to be very quick in responding to questions and queries. It makes my job easier and I think it speaks well of the politicians and their staffs and their regard for the public and the media.

    I also know the different between a staffer being busy and when I'm being stonewalled.

    However, I don't expect our politicians and their staff members to answer my questions in the middle of the night unless it is a dire emergency, like a death of an important state leader or some sort of catastrophe. Skeptical as I may be about our political leaders of whatever party or stripe, they and their staffs do have lives and need to get some sleep. I try to be respectful of that and I think they are, in return, respectful of me and my time. Unlike Janklow, they don't call me or other reporters in the middle of the night.

    All I'm saying is don't abuse Shantel's energy and good customer service or expect her or any other public official to get back to you within seconds of sending in a question or request. A little bit of courtesy and patience can go a long ways.

    Thus endeth the lecture.

    Best regards,


  10. CLCJM 2015.01.23

    Love the comments crossgrain. I a have to chuckle about your comments about fitting in. And I hope Ms. Krebs is just an over achiever.

  11. caheidelberger Post author | 2015.01.24

    Right on, Todd. I most certainly did not expect either of the responses the Secretary of State sent me at the times they arrived. I am perfectly content to have every public servant I contact respond to me during formal business hours, at times when they can fit me in between other affairs of state.

    The point here is that, so far, Secretary Krebs is exceeding some expectations and far exceeding her predecessor's performance.

  12. Tim 2015.01.24

    Cory, a turd floating down the river would move faster and more efficiently than Gant did. Sec. Krebs does seem to be grabbing her bull by the horns so far, I have to admit, it is kind of refreshing for a change. Does she really have an "R" behind her name?

  13. Curt 2015.01.24

    Tim: Stay tuned. The 'R' is for real.

  14. JeniW 2015.01.25

    Yes, Shantel is a dyed in the wool Republican.

Comments are closed.