With a Democrat being challenged by the Republican who gave him the greatest support in the 2006 campaign, and both being challenged by the Republican-running-as-an-Independent who defeated the Republican in the 2006 primary, nothing is normal or party-line in this race.
The players are incumbent Democrat Tom Katus, Republican Stan Adelstein, and Independent Elli Schwiesow.
Dakota Voice is publishing a series of articles over the weeks preceding the November 4 election examining Schwiesow’s position on various issues.
“I strongly support the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms,” Schwiesow recently told me.
“I was the youngest girl in Brookings County to pass the gun safety course at 13 years old at the time,” Schwiesow said proudly. “When I was growing up, we hunted pheasants and went deer hunting. I joined Second Amendment Sisters after coming to Rapid City and now I enjoy going to handgun shoots, and remain a member. I was at a shoot just recently.”
So how does she do on the range? “I’m a very good shot,” she said with a chuckle.
Schwiesow really commended the education and training provided by Second Amendment Sisters for females of all ages: from 10 to 80, from all different ethnic background’s and walks of life.
Schwiesow said she supported the bill introduced in the legislature earlier this year to protect the gun rights of students attending South Dakota universities.
“Most of the kids who go to our universities are good kids seeking a higher education,” she said. “In addition to hunting concerns, armed law-abiding citizens can actually save lives. While the drinking that sometimes goes on at college campuses can be a concern for some, I don’t think that’s going to be an issue any more than we see in the general population.”
She called the Supreme Court overturn of the Washington D.C. gun ban earlier this year “a miracle” and a huge victory for Second Amendment right people.
Schwiesow said the most important reason we have the Second Amendment in the Constitution is, “Protection for our nation. Not just our homes, but to protect from invasion.”
According to Schwiesow, the National Guard does a good job, but they cannot be everywhere at any given time, so the people need to be able to protect themselves.
Schwiesow was rated by the National Rifle Association (NRA) as A+, a rating awarded to very few people. She pointed out that Republican Adelstein has been rated F in the past(he is currently rated C), and Democrat Katus was rated F by the NRA.
Next time, Schwiesow discusses universal preschool and proposals that have been submitted to the South Dakota legislature to implement it in our state.