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South Dakota voters have choices to reshape state government

AP

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Three ballot measures before voters in November have the potential to reshape South Dakota politics and diminish Republicans’ domination of state government.

The measures would remove the party designations by candidates’ names on ballots, infuse campaigns with taxpayer dollars and pry control over political district boundaries from the Legislature.

The ballot measures are backed by separate campaigns that tout bipartisan support, but all three have been condemned by the state GOP. Republicans currently hold every statewide office and supermajorities in the Legislature.

Supporters have characterized the proposals as needed government reforms.

Northern State University political science professor Jon Schaff says the measures would strengthen minority Democrats but that the proposals face an uphill battle because of the GOP opposition and voters’ historical defeat of ballot measures.

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