In a sign Republicans haven’t learned anything from Jason Ravnsborg and Kristi Noem’s failure, they’re pampering the kakistocracy by letting disgraced former Secretary of State Jason Gant carry their banner as Charles County Auditor Mix.
Gant, you may recall, served as the state’s chief electoral officer for a single term, from 2011 to 2015. He was a frequent but inconsistent participant in the Republican effort to suppress Indian voters, but in overall, Gant’s performance was so awful – the electronic ledger debacle, partisan abuse and corrupt cronyism, and the general deceit, incompetence and laziness that destroyed public confidence in the office – that the SDGOP dismissed her failure record and gladly supported Shantel Krebs’ early efforts to push Gant off the stage.
Nothing Gant did added lasting value to South Dakota’s electoral system; his only legacy is being South Dakota’s first secretary of state not to seek a second term. (Krebs became second, but only because she wanted to run for Congress…and perhaps because her star performance in handling the South Dakota election was a little off-putting for a party committed solely to winning the elections. elections, without demonstrating any real competence in public service.) But evidently this incompetent Republican has found a way to quietly revisit public unemployment at home around Geddes as Charles Mix County Auditor. Auditor-elect Danielle Davenport resigned in August 2021; on December 9, 2021, the Charles Mix County Commission hired Gant as an auditor for $50,000/year. At the January 13, 2022 meeting, Auditor Gant asked the commissioners to increase his salary to $56,245.32/year. Gant’s previous record of gross mismanagement has clearly yet to show up at the Andes Lake Courthouse, as Gant filed a petition on Feb. 24 to seek a full term as an auditor.
Come on, Charles Mix: I know you only have 6,580 eligible adults for the job, but at least a dozen of them can handle your election better than Jason Gant. And could you be better served by a listener who actually lives in Charles Mix County? Gant’s nomination petition and voter registration claims an address at this humble 736-square-foot abode at 410 Missouri Ave in Geddes that Zillow reports values at $22,000, but his consulting firm Gant Group claims an address at 47157 S Clubhouse Rd, a 4,110-square-foot Baker Crossing golf course that fetched $559,000 in 2017 and Realtor.com predicts could fetch a million in today’s market. (Seriously? Enough people ask Gant for advice that he can afford top-notch digs like this? Guess fortune in South Dakota favors the incompetent.)
But hey: when a political party can’t even fathom they should remove an attorney general who breaks the law and kills a man, it should be no wonder they keep non-performers like Jason Gant hanging around for s take on the hollow public.