State Senator Jim Bolin


South Dakota voters will get the chance to adjust a constitutional amendment they passed in 2016 – Marsy’s Law.

During debate Wednesday, Republican senators moved the vote to the primary election, as opposed to the general election.

Critics of the move say that will disenfranchise voters who aren’t registered as Republican.

A question that asks South Dakota voters to increase the threshold for a constitutional amendment to pass is one step away from the ballot.

Senate Joint Resolution One passes through the House State Affairs committee on a party line vote, with democrats opposing the measure.

The ballot question would ask voters whether to raise the bar for changing the state constitution to fifty five percent, plus one.

Senate Ed Committee Votes Down Free Speech Bill

Feb 22, 2018

The Senate Education committee narrowly voted down a proposal that protects free speech on public university campuses.

Senate Bill 198 is backed by a national organization for individual rights in education that wants those protections in state statute.

However, critics of the bill say those protections are in the state and federal constitution.

Joseph Cohn is with the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, or FIRE.

Voter May Decide On Constitutional Amendment Change

Jan 22, 2018
Lee Strubinger / SDPB

A Senate committee is advancing a bill that increases the percentage vote needed to change the state’s constitution.

Critics say the increase makes it harder for South Dakotans to change their constitution.

Proponents say it protects the constitution from out of state interests.

If passed through the house and senate and signed by the governor, Senate Joint Resolution will ask voters to increase the required voting threshold for a constitutional change to 55 percent.

The resolution came out of a summer study committee that met over the summer.

Jenifer Jones / SDPB


The House State Affairs committee is passing a bill that seeks to clear up any confusion surrounding ballot measure questions.

One critic of the bill says the change creates a system where a yes vote means no -- and vice versa -- for one particular ballot question.

Referred laws can be confusing.

In essence, the constitutional provision allows the citizens of South Dakota to put a recently passed state law on pause, and overturn the legislature and governor’s vote.