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  Pressure builds, but Gant won't go
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ContributorHikikomori Blitzkrieg! 
Last EditedHikikomori Blitzkrieg!  Jul 11, 2012 03:48pm
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CategoryNews
Authorstaff
MediaNewspaper - Sioux Falls Argus-Leader
News DateTuesday, July 10, 2012 08:50:00 AM UTC0:0
DescriptionA state senator is calling for the resignation or impeachment of Secretary of State Jason Gant, who has faced a steady drumbeat of criticism for being too politically involved.

Sen. Stan Adelstein, R-Rapid City, has filed an official complaint about Gant with Attorney General Marty Jackley, who is reviewing the issue and expects to produce a report within the next few weeks.

Adelstein hopes this investigation will produce pressure on Gant to resign, or possibly provide grounds to impeach him when the Legislature reconvenes in January.

“Gant has to leave,” Adelstein said. “My problem now becomes this: If it’s only going to be impeachment, it’ll be a terrible distraction to the legislative process. I’ve really got to see what I can do to make it more compelling for Gant to resign. I’m not sure how I’m going to do that.”

Gant dismissed Adelstein's charges and said he has no intent of going anywhere.

“The senator’s allegations are false and untrue. It’s unfortunate, but that’s what he’s chosen to do,” Gant said.

For the past several months, as the secretary of state’s office has been running the primary, processing campaign finance reports and preparing for the general election, Gant has been facing a steady chorus of questions about other issues.

The tech-savvy deputy who helped roll out his office’s new online tools, Pat Powers, was discovered to be operating a side business selling campaign merchandise to candidates. Gant called the business a distraction and asked Powers to close it. Last Friday, two months after he shut down the website, Powers resigned.

Democrats cried foul when Gant disqualified several of their candidates on technicalities, but allowed Republicans they considered to have had equal or greater offenses to stay on the ballot.

Gant insisted he has followed the law and treated all sides fairly.
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D:479Brandon ( 1558.3782 points)
x3
Thu, July 12, 2012 12:38:04 AM UTC0:00
Won't go or Gan't go?

 
R:7206Hikikomori Blitzkrieg! ( 290.2565 points)
Sun, July 15, 2012 09:38:56 AM UTC0:00
These are my remarks which appeared in the Saturday, July 14th edition of the Sioux Falls Argus-Leader:

I don't see any valid basis for the complaints against Secretary of State Jason Gant. It is possible he made some bad calls with respect to Democrats who were seeking ballot access, but its also possible he didn't. I really think that's a matter for the courts to hash out. If its determined that he has repeatedly made bad calls that invariably harm the interests of the other major political party (Gant's a Republican), that might well suggest he's unfit for office. But that hasn't been determined yet, and I think its a little irresponsible of some public figures to just assume that because they didn't agree with the calls that he made, that those calls were necessarily the product of a corrupt partisan bias. That's a very serious implication, and I'm not seeing the evidence that justifies alluding to it.

I am also extremely unimpressed by the claim that it was inappropriate for Mr. Gant to work as Rick Santorum's state campaign chairman. Just off the top of my head, I recall that then-Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell served as chairman of the Bush/Cheney re-election campaign in 2004, and I know if I researched it on the Internet, I could easily find 50 or more examples of the same thing.

I agree its a trifle unseemly, but its also the way things are done in this country, somewhat unfortunately, and Mr. Gant doesn't deserve to be singled out for behaving in a manner that is entirely ordinary.

I probably should have specified that Blackwell was the Ohio state chairman of the 2004 Bush/Cheney re-election campaign, but I think most people will realize that's what I meant.