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(SD)-Attorney General Race Picking Up More Candidates

By: John Axtell Posted at: 05/03/2018 11:44 PM
PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - The field to succeed Marty Jackley as the next attorney general of South Dakota is getting crowded with interesting choices as several current or former federal, state and tribal prosecutors vying for party nominations.

     On the Republican side are Lawrence County State's Attorney John Fitzgerald, Yankton lawyer Jason Ravnsborg and State Senator Lance Russell of Hot Springs, a former Fall River County State's Attorney, while the Democrats are former Oglala Sioux tribal attorney general Tatewin Means and former South Dakota U.S. Attorney Randy Seiler, who announced his candidacy this week.

     The 71-year-old Seiler  served as U.S. Attorney from 2015 through last year and says there's "no better training ground" to become state attorney general because of the wide range of issues that come to the U-S Attorney, especially in a state with Indian reservations. The U-S Attorney's office prosecutes most serious crimes on reservations.

     It's the same path followed by Jackley, who was still the U-S Attorney when he was appointed attorney general by then-governor Mike Rounds to succeed Larry Long, who resigned so Rounds could appoint him as a circuit judge.

     All the declared candidates for attorney general have pledged to take on issues ranging from fighting methamphetamine abuse to improving government transparency in South Dakota.

     While the state has a primary election to determine the nominees for governor, the candidates for attorney general and all other executive branch offices are picked at party conventions.

     This year's Republican convention is June 20-23, while the Democrats will meet a week earlier from the 13th-15th. The Libertarian party held its convention last month.


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