Secretary of State Jason Gant certifies Rep. Brian Gosch, R-Rapid City, as the Speaker of the South Dakota House of Representatives. Gosch was elected as Speaker 67-0, with two lawmakers not present. Rep. Stace Nelson, a fierce critic of Gosch, was not in his chair for the vote. This is normal: two years ago, Rep. Val Rausch was elected Speaker 70-0. (Congress does things differently — there, typically, each party votes for their own leader for Speaker of the House.) In his acceptance speech, Gosch praised South Dakota as a “shining example for other states to look to,” and said it’s that way because of the efforts of both political parties.
UPDATE: I misreported the vote total here, which was 67-0, now 68-0. Not voting were Nelson (who was in the building and returned for the State of the State, Rep. Kevin Killer, D-Pine Ridge, and Rep. Lance Carson, R-Mitchell.