My State Senator, Ping Murray, was Chairman of the Taxation Committee, and he was sitting on (meaning, not doing anything to advance) a tax bill of great interest to the Homestake Mine, the principal employer in Senator Dunmire’s district. It seems that several senators were trying to teach their colleagues from the Northern Hills about Homestake being too big for its britches in the hallways of the Capitol.
I trudged back to Ping’s apartment and urged him to let the Homestake tax bill out of committee in exchange for moving the ratification of the 24th Amendment forward. He agreed.
Then I trudged back to Dunmire’s apartment to confirm the deal.
“Okay, we are on our way,” he said. But there was a problem. The date for getting committee bills to the floor had passed. To get ratification onto the floor would require a suspension of the rules, and that in turn would require the Lieutenant Governor’s approval as presiding officer of the Senate. The LG was Nils Boe, a Sioux Falls lawyer who’d gone home for the weekend. I called him. He agreed to meet the next morning if I could get to his office in Sioux Falls.
I had flown to Pierre in my private airplane for this mission, so I called my pilot, Bob Higgins, to see whether we could possibly get there. We planned to be “wheels up” out of the Pierre airport by 8 a.m. the following morning.
I’m told I have to keep my blog posts short or fewer people will read them, so stay tuned tomorrow for the conclusion of the story! (And thanks for your patience so far).