South Dakota house speaker recovering from COVID-19

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — A top South Dakota lawmaker says he had a severe case of COVID-19 that sent him to the emergency room twice this month.

Republican House Speaker Steve Haugaard tells the Argus Leader he spent the last two weeks dealing with the disease, which is spreading rapidly in South Dakota. Haugaard is at least the second South Dakota legislator to be diagnosed with COVID-19. He says he intends to return to work this week. “It’s been the most devastating stuff I’ve ever had in my life,” said the 64-year-old Sioux Falls attorney.

Haugaard and dozens of other lawmakers convened in Pierre earlier this month for a special session of the Legislature to formally authorize Gov. Kristi Noem to spend more than a billion dollars in federal pandemic relief funds.

But Haugaard couldn’t say where he contracted the virus because he’d been around different people in different settings in the days before he began showing symptoms.



October 20, 2020