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Citizenship is Not a Spectator Sport

Jeanne in South Dakata

I was in South Dakota this last week and spoke at the Clay County Republican Lincoln Day dinner. My sister is the Vice-Chairman of the organization. The keynote speaker was fellow Illinoisan Adam Andrzejewski from Adam also spoke with local elected officials at a private breakfast about transparency and to college Republicans and a political science class while he was out there.

Everyone should hear about the work Adam is doing. His stories will alarm you, motivate you to pay attention to how your money is being used -or abused by the government – and hopefully spur you to get involved.

Did you know that in addition to hiring 87,000 more IRS agents, the Biden administration wants to add 600 more ARMED IRS agents to the agency? If that happens, the IRS will have one of the 45 largest armed government units in the country. Why does any IRS agent need to be armed, including having sub-machine guns?

I also learned that Adam was canceled as a contributor to Forbes after he wrote about the Fauci royalties from Big Pharma. Someone has a lot of power.

These stories and more are important for you to hear. Please get your ticket now for our 3rd Annual Dinner and BE MORE INFORMED. The Edgar County Watchdog stories will also shock you! These guys are heroes and should be celebrated by everyone, no matter what party you belong to.

The goal of my speech at the Lincoln Day dinner was to both warn South Dakotans that it is really easy for Leftist ideology to sweep in and they need to guard against it and ask them to continue to serve as a model for good government to the rest of the nation.

Believe it or not, the South Dakota legislature is possibly considering letting a private company use eminent domain against private land owners in order to construct a CO2 pipeline which is part of a multi-state effort to sequester CO2 from ethanol plants, liquify it, and move it to deep underground storage basins in North Dakota and near Decatur, Illinois.

The whole deal stinks! In my podcast this week, I have Steve Goreham on to discuss energy issues and his new book – that gives me hope – Green Breakdown: The Coming Renewable Energy Failure. In a future podcast, Steve and I will be discussing the utter nonsense of sequestering CO2.

Here is an excerpt of my speech:

I’m grateful for the opportunity to address you. I do so as the proverbial canary in the coal mine and with a little bit of self-interest.

You see when I moved to Illinois with my husband 31 years ago, I figured I was moving to a commonsense mid-western state. And in the early 90’s it was. Thirty years later, Illinois’ political ruling class has made the state a hotbed of radical ideological policies on par with California and New York.

Illinois, with the fifth largest GDP in the country, has the worst credit rating of all 50 states and rates in the bottom five in important categories like out-migration, where CEOs want to locate a company, tax burden, abortion policies, and crime prevention.

To add a bit more context to the last two categories, in 2019, Governor Pritzker signed pro-abortion legislation that allows for the killing of the unborn for any reason up to birth and is taxpayer-funded. The bill put in gender-neutral language – so instead of woman – it used pregnant person – and said in the case of a death at an abortion clinic, the coroner did not have to be called. After the Roe v. Wade decision, the Democrat leaders discussed providing funds so that women from other states could travel from out of state to get their abortions in Illinois. To top it off, this year on March 10th, the Governor declared it Abortion Provider Appreciation Day in Illinois. As we speak right now, legislation has passed the Senate and is in the Illinois House to essentially shut down pro-life pregnancy centers.

No longer "safe, legal and rare" – no longer simply "my body, my choice", now it is you can’t provide any option for those in a crisis pregnancy.

In the area of crime, Illinois passed the first in the nation bill that completely abolished cash bail. That legislation became known around the US as the Purge Law. It literally had a very narrow set of crimes and circumstances for which any criminal suspect could be held pending trial. But for a pushback by 100 out of 102 states attorneys in the state and over 60 of them filing a lawsuit against the law claiming it violates our state constitution, thousands of dangerous criminals were set to be released from jail on January 1st. As it stands right now, serious crime goes unpunished in Chicago, and the effect of the Soros-backed non-prosecutorial states attorney is to invite more crime onto the streets of Chicago, and that has migrated to the suburbs.

These changes in Illinois policy didn’t happen overnight. They happened one election at a time. They happened when Republicans got too comfortable in their own positions to provide a counterweight and pushback mechanism against Democrats. They happened gradually as Republicans acquiesced in the spirit of camaraderie to let just this one bill go through. It happened when Republicans didn’t want to make arguments and citizens stopped paying attention.

So, I’m here tonight to ask you to do something very important for our country. I am asking you, as South Dakotans, to serve as a model for good government to the rest of the nation. I am asking you to make the arguments for conservative policies from school curriculum to taxes and to prove as an example that people in other states can point to.

I know many of you are thinking right now that this is just an Illinois problem. We are just easily distracted by a good hot dog and a Bears game. But the truth is that this bad policy can migrate and will migrate to other places if you aren’t vigilant in beating back bad ideas when they first arise.

This year my high school class will be back in Vermillion for our 40th class reunion. A mere Forty years ago, South Dakota was represented by Democrat Tom Daschle in Congress. Then, four years later in 1987, Daschle went to the US Senate, and Democrat Tim Johnson filled his Congressional seat. In total, conservative South Dakota was represented at the national level by Democrats Daschle – In fact, Senate Majority Leader Daschle - for 26 years and Johnson for 28 years. 2015 the year Johnson finally left office, is not that long ago.

You see, my point is - Political representation can change for the worse - or the better. How are you going to protect yours?

I offer a suggestion on that, pay attention to what is happening at the local level.

I got a first-hand look at Clay County politics last summer when the land along the Missouri River that I inherited with my siblings from our Uncle came under attack from the environmentalists who wanted to force their will on private land owners.

Rational Arguments that we made about the best way to preserve that land fell on deaf ears. We offered a plan to preserve much of the trees and natural beauty of the river with strict covenants on setbacks from the river. The Land otherwise could be completely cleared of its undisturbed hardwood trees and farmed up to the river bank with no county approval. But the radicals literally thought that land was theirs and that they could direct what happens on it. They hold positions that are oppositional to our founding principles of private property - and they hold office here locally. The Left isn't interested in common ground. They are fixated on their ideology.

Trust me, who you elect locally matters.

Even in Vermillion, you are not immune from the Left’s position on a myriad of issues. Do you know what’s happening at your local school? What’s their policy on allowing students in private spaces of the opposite sex? You may be surprised.

Many have said it before me, but this sentiment really sums up my feelings on political involvement. Citizenship is not a spectator sport. Adding to that is John Adams’, quote that Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”

You have a duty to get involved. Personally, I can’t unknow what I know. And now that I know it, I can’t bury my head in the sand. And I won’t. I won’t let them subject my kids to the DEI agenda. Last week, I let a Vice Admiral in charge of all Navy legal affairs know how I felt about their vax mandate and woke agenda. I won’t leave the fight to my son, the Navy pilot or any of my other children, for that matter.


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