On the Issues: Marilyn Oakes

Phil Jensen


Incumbent candidates have a voting record upon which we can rely to know whether they will support Republican values and principles if re-elected.  The best indicator of how a candidate will behave if they receive our support is how they have already voted on the issues. If a candidate has faithfully supported Republican principles in the past, there is every reason to believe they will continue to do so, if re-elected. If a candidate has done a poor job of representing Republican principles, or has even done more to help the other side than their own, then there is every reason to believe this behavior will continue if they are re-elected.

Marilyn Oakes

Marilyn Oakes

But fresh candidates with no voting record are an unknown.  Often times we only hear sweet-sounding mottos and phrases from them that don’t really tell us how they will vote on various issues or certain bills in particular.  Also, we sometimes hear that a candidate is in favor of this issue or that, but when the rubber meets the road and a bill is before them, the tune changes.

American Clarion recently submitted a list of questions to new candidates for the South Dakota Legislature in 2016.  These questions focused primarily on bills that were considered in the 2016 legislative session, to develop an idea of how the candidate might have voted on these issues, were they in office at the time the bills were considered.

Rick Kriebel 2016


The next installment in this series comes from Marilyn Oakes, a Republican candidate for the South Dakota House in District 30.  You can read more about her at her website.

The candidate’s responses are below, presented un-edited and in full.

How would you have voted on HB 1182, the education tax bill?

Woodrow Wilcox


I would have voted AGAINST it because it was not set up right, the money to fund education was available to the legislature through other resources, and this bill was nothing more than another money grab from the State, similar to HB 1.

If you would have opposed HB 1182, what kind of legislation would you have sponsored or supported?

I think that we (the legislature) needed to look at cost saving methods, rearranging the capital outlay resources, ratios of salaries of administration verses teachers/others, costs of maintaining administrative offices for smaller counties with an eye to consolidating the administrations, but not necessarily the schools, and then we (legislature) should have explored the percentages of increases the state employees have received in comparison to the increases of teacher’s pay – if the discrepancies were there then there needed to be more money allotted from the General Funds for education. (along with this we needed to get rid of the Federal Government’s intrusion into education in particular Common Core and other programs. OPPOSED

How would you have voted on HB 1008, the restroom privacy bill, and why?

I would have SUPPORTED it because I believe that the rights of each individual leave off where others’ rights begin. If we are required to provide a restroom and shower for trans-gendered youth we should do that without compromising the rights of the entire rest of the school population.

Would you have voted to override Governor Daugaard’s veto of the privacy bill, and why?

Absolutely I would have voted YES TO OVERRIDE it since I would have voted for it in the first place.  I don’t understand why many changed their votes, and I find it quite suspicious.

Would you have supported HB 1076, the drug testing for welfare recipient’s bill, or a variation thereof? Why or why not?

Probably would have voted for it. I think a variation of that might be a better option, though. The bill needs to be very specific to how the tests are done, how often, and after a certain period of time with clean tests the frequency could be reduced. There is a cost to doing that, and it may not be cost effective to test for all drugs, and as I understand it some drugs won’t show up in simple urine tests. Using marijuana as a marker drug is a good idea, and we do know that it will show up in urine for almost a month after being used, so that is probably the easiest and best way to start testing. I think that welfare should be looked at closely as to how it is used, as it appears a number of recipients actually use that money fairly liberally, while working “off the books” at jobs. Some would argue that a bill requiring drug testing is unfair to welfare recipients, but there are many jobs in the state that require drug testing, or at least you would be at risk of losing them if you were busted for drug use.

How would you have voted on HB 1107 to protect religious freedom and the right of conscience for Christian organizations and businesses?

Again, my rights leave off where yours begin. If you have rights to marry someone of your own gender I should have the right to not bake a cake for you IF it is against my religion. Not sure this would stand up to the SCOTUS “law” (unconstitutional as it was), but states have the 10th Amendment on their side, if they would just use it. It might take a case going all the way to the Supreme Court to prove the rights of States as guaranteed by the Constitution. SUPPORTED

How would you have voted on HB 1110 to provide taxpayer-funded health care to pregnant illegal aliens?

I believe we States have the right to say “no” to taxpayer funded health care to anyone who isn’t a legalize citizen.

Do you support or oppose legislation which would better enable South Dakota to deal with the illegal immigration problem in our state?

Yes I would SUPPORT legislation to help our state deal with illegal immigration. I would also like to address any federally sponsored immigration that might be directed to our state as I would oppose that vehemently

What is your opinion of Governor Daugaard’s refusal to stand against the resettlement of improperly vetted Syrian refugees in South Dakota?

Totally OPPOSED to it because it is another over-reach of the federal government into the rights of state, and he should have taken a position in spite of his assertion that our state hasn’t been targeted yet. The states need to pull together to exert their rights. The more states that join in, the stronger their position will become.

Do you support or oppose Common Core and other nationalized education standards? Why?

I OPPOSE Common Core and was opposed to No Child Left Behind, for the same reasons – our state is unique and should not be subjected to the same teaching standards and materials as other states, UNLESS our local boards approved of them. In other words, I believe that we as a state are perfectly capable of creating our own standards and then finding the right materials to teach to the standards. I oppose any federal program that is designed to level the playing field for all students across the country because that field inevitably will be lower than our state standards. I feel that the standardizing testing and the national reporting of those tests is invasive and downright dangerous.

Do you support or oppose expanding Medicaid in South Dakota? Why?

I’m wondering how it is that we need more Medicaid when our unemployment numbers are the lowest in the nation? Finding anyone who isn’t already employed and needs a job is practically impossible. I OPPOSE expanding Medicaid in South Dakota.

Do you support or oppose legislation that would reduce the number of abortions that occur in South Dakota?

I SUPPORT any legislation that would protect the life of unborn children, except in the case of when the life of the mother is at serious risk.

Do you support or oppose legislation allowing law-abiding South Dakotans to carry a concealed weapon without a permit?

I SUPPORT the 2nd Amendment, Open Carry (without a permit) and would never vote to limit law-abiding members of our society from carrying guns, buying guns or limiting access to ammunition

Based on the bills that have passed the South Dakota Legislature in the past two years, and the bills that have been killed in the South Dakota Legislature over the past two years, do you believe the majority of South Dakota Republican legislators are doing a good job of upholding the values and principles of the Republican Party? Why or why not?

Just in the last two years we have seen a number of professed “Conservative” legislators cave in on key votes that would have helped continue our state values and principles. It has gotten so bad that a number of very good legislators have chosen not to run again or be any part of the process. Reading some of their comments after this last legislature session has made me even more anxious to get seated in Pierre and fight the ugliness that seems to be sweeping through our state government.

If elected to the South Dakota Legislature, what is your number one legislative priority, and why?

The last question hit the nail on the head. We are a sinking boat and need to bail water fast to get back afloat. Without naming names or pointing fingers, I would say that we need strong Conservatives who can’t be swayed from their core principles and who will cast a vote and stick with it no matter what the repercussions might be. My core principles are 1) Pro-life, 2) Pro 2nd Amendment, 3) Pro- 10th Amendment (States Rights), 4) More fiscal responsibility in the State Government via cutting expenses, jobs, reducing fees and reconsidering our priorities. Education was and is a priority but we chose the wrong method of trying to solve the funding issue. (see answer to the second question) I would always vote true to my core principles, but putting one issue ahead of any of the others is not possible for me. It is a big job, requiring serious minded people who have good common sense and judgment and can’t be intimidated or bullied. That would be me, for one.



This article is printed with the permission of the author(s). Opinions expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the article’s author(s), or of the person(s) or organization(s) quoted therein, and do not necessarily represent those of American Clarion or Dakota Voice LLC.

Comment Rules: Please confine comments to salient ones that add to the topic; Profanity is not allowed and will be deleted; Spam, copied statements and other material not comprised of the reader’s own opinion will be deleted.

Similar Posts:

Bob Ellis has been the owner of media company Dakota Voice, LLC since 2005. He is a 10-year U.S. Air Force veteran, a political reporter and commentator for the past decade, and has been involved in numerous election and public policy campaigns for over 20 years. He was a founding member and board member of the Tea Party groups Citizens for Liberty and the South Dakota Tea Party Alliance. He lives in Rapid City, South Dakota with his wife and two children.
Bob Ellis
View all articles by Bob Ellis
Print Friendly