SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Members of the South Dakota Democratic Party continue to work to remove party chair Jennifer Slaight-Hansen.
Democratic Sen. Reynold Nesiba confirmed to KELOLAND News the party plans to hold a special meeting of the party’s State Central Committee on Saturday, Aug. 19 in Pierre. The State Central Committee includes a variety of South Dakota Democrats including: statewide party officers, executive board members, county chairs and vice chairs, two county committee persons and legislative district chairs and vice chairs.
Slaight-Hansen told KELOLAND News last week she does not plan to resign her position. She did admit to breaking a rule in the party’s constitution when she hired two summer interns without executive board approval.
“That is something that I overlooked,” Slaight-Hansen said last week.
The agenda of the SDDP State Central Committee special meeting includes discussing more than 70 petition signatures which will be vetted and authorized before discussion of misconduct by Slaight-Hansen.
SDDP party officials hope to get up to 80 signatures and accomplish a two-thirds majority vote of eligible members present at the special meeting to recall Slaight-Hansen, according to rules set in the SDDP Constitution.
Other meetings, including a meeting of the SDDP Executive Board, will proceed the Aug. 19 State Central Committee meeting to establish rules for who is authorized to participate in the recall vote.
KELOLAND News reached out to Slaight-Hansen for comment on the Aug. 19 meeting but has not heard back.
Regardless of the Aug. 19 meeting and recall vote, Slaight-Hansen will have an opportunity to appeal any decision, according to the party’s constitution.
Annie Bachand, chair of the Pennington County Democrats, said she is “absolutely” committed to the process of upholding SDDP Constitution.
“It is a strain on everybody. People are more committed than ever as a direct result of all this going on,” Bachand said. “There’s been increased conversation about what’s best for the greater good.”