The whole point of free speech is not to make ideas exempt from criticism but to expose them to it.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Don't count on a veto...but...

There is talk here on the Forum and on the Rapid City Journal's web site about the possibility of Mayor Hanks vetoing the resolution to censure Sam Kooiker. I wouldn't count on it folks. Mayor Hanks made clear his dislike for Kooiker with his now infamous "wingnut" brochure.

If you want to email the mayor, his email is

Folks where I occasionally tip a glass of Pepsi are grumbling about a recall election. In the case of Malcolm Chapman and Lloyd LaCroix, it makes little sense, since they are up for re-election in the upcoming city election.

Recall might be effective for Alderwoman Deb Hadcock and Mayor Hanks. I'm not going to carry the water on a recall vote. I believe the statute says you'll need signatures from registered voters totaling 15 percent of the people who voted in the last election. A Hadcock recall would require 15 percent of those who voted in Ward 2's last election. That is no small task, but is probably more possible in Ward 2 (Kooiker's ward) than in the city at large.

Now if the people who profess to be screaming mad about this issue are serious, they should do something about it. Find candidates to oppose LaCroix's (Ward 4), Chapman's (Ward 5), and Olson's (Ward 3) seats. (I had planned on running in Ward 3. Olson has told me personally that she is not running. I have said here, and will stand by my decision not to seek Olson's seat, based on this very issue.) Or, run yourself, unless you plan to join the City Council Club and rubber stamp whatever is brought to you, even if it means smearing the good name of a good man.

If you want to serve in the manner of a Sam Kooiker or a Ron Weifenbach, please run. There are people in Rapid City ready and willing to help. And there are more people who will vote for you.

An old comic friend of mine had a bit where he said "I came home from the road and my wife told me she was leaving me. I asked if she was leaving me for somebody else. She told me 'No, I'm leaving you for ANYBODY else."

If you are running against Hadcock or Chapman, you could not pick a better time to do it, because after this fiasco, voters in Ward 4 and Ward 5 are prepared to vote for ANYBODY else.


Anonymous said...

I'm down with a recall of Hadcock and Hanks.

I've read Sanborn's stuff for a few years now. You're the type of guy I would support. I know you're reluctant, but we(very badly) need people of your caliber in city hall.

Bill Fleming said...

Mike, Anon is right. Why not run for City Council? You'd be good at it. And if they censure you, you could wear it as a badge of honor.

Hanks is on record as saying this was the Council's action, isn't he? Wouldn't he be going back on his word to veto their actions after he allowed the censure to come up for discussion?

i.e. the time for him to veto this action has come and gone.

Michael Sanborn said...


I watched Jennifer Kooiker at the hearing. It was the first time she has ever attended a council meeting, that I'm aware of.

I met her during Sam's mayoral race. She just wants to be a wife and a mom. But on Tuesday, her husband was under attack. And, she was there.

When she spoke of the late night and early morning calls Sam receives almost daily, and how it impacts her and their three daughters, it was compelling.

I am FAR less diplomatic than Sam. Some consider me mean. While at the Journal, things I wrote resulted in late night death threats, vandalism to our home and cars, and bullying at the schools.

While a columnist for the Journal and the Weekly News, I generated multiple hate phone calls and was not always there to take them, so sometimes my wife or daughters took them.

Even my comments here have resulted in some nasty phone calls. My family has endured this because they know who I am and love me in spite of it.

My wife has been putting up with my "public" life for 35 years. And, in that time, nobody has ever called me a liar, questioned my integrity, or second guessed what was in my heart.

I watched Jennifer Kooiker as she listened to that council intentionally smear her husband's good name, in a resolution that Weifenbach and Waugh agreed was full of lies.

I saw the look on Jennifer's face. And serving Rapid City on its city council is, to me, not worth seeing that same look on any member of my family. I'm their husband and father. They've suffered enough.

Anonymous said...

If the political climate has scared people like you from running for office, we are in serious trouble.

I don't blame you for not wanting to run. That being said, I bet, despite the nastiness that comes with politics, that your family would see you as a hero for standing up to these bullies. I kinow I would.

Jordan Mason said...

My name is Jordan Mason and I am running for Ward 4 against Lloyd LaCroix.

It is time that the people of Rapid City have their voice heard loud and clear. It is time to have representation that represents the people's concerns; it is time to have a city government that maintains roadways and infrastructure; it is time to stop irresponsible spending; it is time to restore the

Power to the People!