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Campaign Begins For Next SD Governor

June 9, 2010, 6:01 PM by Erica Johnson

Campaign Begins For Next SD Governor
The race is on for South Dakota's next governor. Dennis Daugaard captured more than half the votes in Tuesday night's Republican primary. Now he'll face Democratic candidate Scott Heidepriem in the general election this November.

With 42,000 votes, Daugaard dominated the contest for the Republican spot on the ballot this November. Now the focus is on winning the Governor's seat, and as both candidates move forward by discussing the issues, they're already falling on opposite ends.

A celebration and hugs as Daugaard learned of his victory in the Republican gubernatorial race was also the moment his next campaign began. In fact, it didn't take long for both candidates for governor to hit the campaign trail. The key issue that's likely to shape this race is the state's budget.

“I think there is some concern about our financial future especially as the recession is here but if you look at the facts and the way South Dakota has managed itself, we have a right to be proud of the way we've managed things here and we're going to be first to get out of this recession.  I'm confident,” Daugaard said.

Daugaard, who's currently serving as the lieutenant governor, believes the budget has been handled the way it should.

Democratic candidate Scott Heidepriem, who is also the senate minority leader, says Daugaard is painting a picture that's too optimistic about the fiscal future of the state and he plans to make it his key component of his campaign.

“Under Dennis and Mike's watch, we have built a deficit of $107 million. I have been a constant critic of government spending and growing the bureaucracy and they've defended that practice,” Heidepriem said.

Heidepriem says his goals include making a smaller, smarter and more transparent government that will work together to cut spending.

It may be a key issue, but it's only one of the many we're sure to hear about over the next five months as they try to win your support in the general election.

Heidepriem has chosen Republican Ben Arndt as his lieutenant governor. Daugaard hasn't named a running mate yet.

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