(Pierre) For the first time in the state’s history, articles of impeachment have been filed against a constitutional officer.
Republican Representative Will Mortenson has filed a resolution proposing two Articles of Impeachment to remove Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg from office. The resolution is co-sponsored by House Majority Leader Kent Peterson and House Minority Leader Jamie Smith.
Mortenson says the Attorney General has a special obligation to follow the laws and protect the public. He says Ravnsborg’s actions and statements related to the death of Joseph Boever breached those obligations to the people of South Dakota, and he should be removed from office.
Article XVI of the South Dakota Constitution grants the House of Representatives the sole authority to bring an impeachment action against a state official like the Attorney General. The resolution included two separate Articles of Impeachment, one concerning the crimes and misdemeanors that caused the death of Joseph Boever on September 12, 2020 and one concerning the statements and actions of Ravnsborg in reporting the crime and the resulting investigation.
Peterson says this isn’t about party or politics, it’s about doing the right thing for South Dakota.
Smith says what happened was a tragedy for all involved. He says that cannot deter them from fulfilling their duties. He says the Attorney General has lost the confidence of the people of South Dakota, and he should be removed from office.
A spokesman for the Governor’s office says she supports the impeachment of Ravnsborg. She has called for him to resign.
February 23, 2021