With the 93rd legislative session still a recent memory, attention has turned to the next election cycle and who will be running for the 105 seats that come open every two years in the state. The 94th Session of the South Dakota Legislature begins on January 8, 2019 and will include a 40-day calendar.

Secretary of State, Shantel Krebs, recently released a list of legislative candidates who qualify for the primary which will be held on June 5. The deadline for submission of signatures and candidate paperwork was March 27. For those candidates filing as Independents, the paperwork is due April 24.

In any given year, the state legislature experiences a turnover of approximately one-third of its members. Under South Dakota term limit laws, legislators are limited to serving four consecutive two-year terms in a single chamber, however, there is no limit on the number of non-consecutive terms a legislator may serve. Often, a legislator who has served eight years in one chamber will decide to run for election in the other chamber. A legislator who has “termed-out” is eligible for election again after two years.

This election cycle is notable for increasing the number of female legislators, as recent news reports indicated that nearly 60 women have filed to run for office. A total of 21 women served during the just completed legislative session. We will share additional insights and analysis on the candidates prior to the primary elections in June.