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SD Blogger Sues State Over Petition Laws

Courtesy of Cory Heidelberger

A South Dakota blogger is suing the state of South Dakota over a law that he says unconstitutionally suppresses people’s right to circulate initiative and referendum petitions.

Cory Heidelberger writes for Dakota Free Press and is bringing the lawsuit. He says five portions of South Dakota law are burdensome to circulating petitions.

He says the legislature has passed laws over the years that attack the initiative and referendum process. That includes last session’s House Bill 1094, which establishes a registry and badge requirement for circulators.

“The pattern of behavior by the legislature over all these years, capped off by [HB] 1094 really demonstrates their pattern of contempt for the initiative and referendum process and their desire to kill it by small cuts every year,” So, we’re coming after them. We’re trying to stop that and restore the people’s rights.”

 One portion of state law Heidelberger is challenging in court was passed ten years ago. That law requires initiative signatures be submitted a year prior to the election.

He says that prevents citizens from responding to the legislature following session. This is the second lawsuit Heidelberger has brought against the state this year.