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Grass Roots, Moving and Shaking South Dakota Politics
Patriot Ripple Effect

A Sioux Falls based grass roots group, named Patriot Ripple Effect, hosted a packed election event last night April 28, 2022 at the Sioux Falls Alliance Center. The "Chit Chat" event was stated to be "an opportunity to break the ice", and help voters get to know who will be on the 2022 ballot.

Currently elected state legislators, commissioners, city council members and candidates across twelve districts met on common ground with voters. Many hosted booths for extended Q and A time, while others walked around and introduced themselves.

The event coordinators gave every candidate and incumbent equal time to speak and share their platform.

Bruce Whalen, who is running for U.S. Senate against John Thune, was met with a round of applause and much excitement from the crowd. Whalen is running a historically significant race, if elected, Whalen would be one of the only indigenous persons to ever represent Tribal Communities within the halls of the U.S. Senate.

Voters felt the noticeable absence of Gov. Kristi Noem, along with other statewide office holders. Steve Haugaard, Noem's primary challenger was in attendance, and told The Dakota Leader he has nearly doubled the millage on his vehicle this election, going from event to event.

The event was free to attend, drawing a much larger crowd than many highly anticipated election events. Attendees told the Dakota Leader that they just can't afford candidate dinners during this time, and really wish the larger names on the ballot would meet people where they're at financially, and geographically.

The Chit Chat event seems indicative of a new political class, and era of voter. In speaking with several attendees, voters report wanting to look a candidate in the eye, and ask them the hard questions, to gauge honesty and intellectual respect.

Kathleen Puttmann, a Colton resident and event attendee told The Dakota Leader, "I'm tired of pomp and circumstance. I'm a regular person and I want regular people to represent me in office. There's a real disconnect with individuals who have spent their career in the public sector, and don't understand what it's like to balance a checkbook, or have to go without. It's time we had real people in office, and events like these really show how down to earth a person is."

Monae Johnson is a mother and grandmother, who worked in the Secretary of State's office and the Attorney General's Office throughout her career. Reminiscent of Dolly Parton in the movie "Working 9-5," Johnson has a bright smile and a keen wit. Johnson has that grit about her that comes from overcoming adversity, being underrated and working in a man's world, while remaining a Lady.

More events are coming up, and can be found by going to the Patriot Ripple Effect website.

Editor's Note- Many of the candidates from last night's event have paid advertising with The Dakota Leader, creating a clear conflict of interest. In an effort to report what occurred, without crossing ethical boundaries of policy reporting, this article is written in a tabloid style format.
--Breeauna Sagdal- Editor At Large

Post Date: 2022-04-29 13:43:04Last Update: 2022-04-29 16:25:14


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