South Dakota gubernatorial election, 2010

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In the South Dakota gubernatorial election of 2010, held on November 2, 2010, Republican Dennis Daugaard, the current Lieutenant Governor of South Dakota, defeated Democrat Scott Heidepriem, Minority Leader of the South Dakota State Senate. Incumbent Republican Governor Michael "Mike" Rounds was term-limited.

In the June 8, 2010 primary elections, Heidepriem faced no opposition while Daugaard topped 50% against four other contenders, easily capturing the GOP nomination.

November 2, 2010 general election results

Results have been certified as of November 9, 2010.[1]

Governor/Lt. Governor of South Dakota, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngDennis Daugaard/Matthew Michels 61.5% 195,024
     Democratic Scott Heidepriem/Ben Arndt 38.5% 122,010
Total Votes 317,034

Inauguration and transition

Inaugural date

Governor-elect Dennis Daugaard was inaugurated on January 8, 2011.

Transition team

The Governor-elect ran a transition office in the state capitol of Pierre; it was open during business hours and on weekends until the inauguration.[2]

Governor-elect Transition Office
500 East Capitol Street
Suite 412
Pierre, South Dakota 57501
Phone: (605) 773-4023

Additionally, there was a transition website, at Transition SD.

Governor-elect Daugaard announced six core members of his transition team. They were augmented by additional South Dakotans who were invited to consult on specific policy areas.

Named to the transition team were:

  • Jeff Erickson, the recently retired CEO of Great Western Bank
  • Deb Bowman, Secretary of Social Services for South Dakota since 2005
  • Ryan Budmayr, campaign director for the western region of the state
  • Jason Glodt, political director for the campaign
  • Dusty Johnson, newly re-elected Chairman of the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission
  • Tony Venhuizen, Daugaard's campaign manager

Appointments in the Daugaard Administration

Eschewing a vertical leadershop structure with a single official reporting directly to the Governor, Daugaard instead announced an "Executive Committee" of six officers, each of whom will report directly to him.[3]

  • Chief of Staff Dusty Johnson
  • Senior Adviser to the Governor Deb Bowman
  • Director of Policy and Communications Tony Venhuizen
  • Commissioner of Finance and Management Jason Dilges
  • the final position, Secretary of Economic Development, is unfilled as of November 22, 2010

June 8, 2010 primary

As Mr. Heidepriem ran unopposed within the Democratic party, he secured the nomination without a primary.

2010 Race for Governor - Republican Primary[4]
Candidates Percentage
Dave Knudson (R) 15.77%
Scott Munsterman (R) 17.57%
Green check mark.jpg Dennis Daugaard (R) 50.42%
Ken Knuppe (R) 3.8%
Gordon Howie (R) 12.44%
Total votes 83,817

Race ratings

See also: Gubernatorial elections 2010, Race tracking

2010 Race Rankings South Dakota
Race Tracker Race Rating
The Cook Political Report[5] Solid Republican
Congressional Quarterly Politics[6] Likely Republican
Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball[7] Likely Republican
Rasmussen Reports Gubernatorial Scorecard[8] Solid GOP
The Rothenberg Political Report[9] Currently Safe Republican
Overall Call Republican


1. Cook Political Report moved races from "Likely Republican" to "Solid Republican" on October 28th.


The November Ballot – Who Made It? South Dakota Governor[10]
Nominee Affiliation
Scott Heidepriem Democrat
Dennis Daugaard Republican
This lists candidates who won their state's primary or convention, or who were unopposed, and who were officially certified for the November ballot by their state's election authority.



  • Dennis Daugaard, Current Lieutenant Governor
  • Gordon Howie, a businessman and former member of both the State House and Senate, ran as a 'Tea Party Republican'. Since losing his party's primary, he has returned to his real estate and ranching interests.
  • Majority Leader of the State Senate Dave Knudson
  • Ken Knuppe, a rancher
  • Chiropractor Scott Munsterman, formerly the Mayor of Brookings


General election polling

2010 Race for South Dakota Governor - Rasmussen Reports
Date Reported Daugaard (R) Heidepriem (D) Other Don't Know
October 4, 2010[12] 57% 33% 4% 6%
September 12, 2010[13] 57% 28% 4% 11%
August 3, 2010[14] 59% 27% 4% 10%
July 6, 2010[15] 52% 35% 4% 9%
June 10, 2010[16] 52% 36% 3% 9%
(Sample)[17] n=500 MoE=+/- 4.5% p=0.05

Gubernatorial electoral history

1998 Gubernatorial Results[18][19]
Candidates Percentage
William J. Janklow (R) 64.04%
Bernie Hunhoff (D) 32.85%
Bob Newland (L) 1.69%
Ronald Wieczorek (IND) 1.42%
Total votes 260,187
2002 Gubernatorial Results[20][21]
Candidates Percentage
M. Michael Rounds (R) 56.77%
Jim Abbott (D) 41.92%
James Carlson (IND) 0.72%
Nathan Barton (L) 0.59%
Total votes 334,559
2006 Gubernatorial Results[22][23]
Candidates Percentage
M. Michael Rounds (R) 61.69%
Jack Billion (D) 36.13%
Steven J. Wills (C) 1.20%
Tom Gerber (L) 0.98%
Total votes 335,508

Presidential electoral history

2000 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George W. Bush (R) 60.30%
Al Gore (D) 37.56%
2004 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George W. Bush (R) 59.91%
John Kerry (D) 38.44%
2008 Presidential Results[24]
Candidates Percentage
John McCain (R) 53.16%
Barack Obama (D) 44.75%

1992 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
George H.W. Bush (R) 40.66%
Bill Clinton (D) 37.14%
1996 Presidential Results
Candidates Percentage
Bob Dole (R) 46.49%
Bill Clinton (D) 43.03%

External links

Candidate pages

See also


  1. South Dakota Secretary of State, "General Election - November 2, 2010," updated November 9, 2001 at 17:10, accessed November 15, 2010
  2. Argus Leader, "Gov.-elect Daugaard opens transition office," November 10, 2010
  3. Transition SD, "Governor-elect Daugaard Announces Executive Committee," November 22, 2010
  4. South Dakota Secretary of State 2010 Primary Results
  5. The Cook Political, “Governors: Race Ratings”
  6. CQ Politics, “2010 Race Ratings: Governors”
  7. Larry J. Sabato's Crystal Ball', “2010 Governor Ratings”
  8. Rasmussen Reports', “Election 2010: Scorecard Ratings”
  9. Rothenberg Political Report, “Governor Ratings”
  10. South Dakota Elections & Voter Registration Overview, “Statewide Candidate List as of 9/20/2010 12:21:27AM
  11. South Dakota Secretary of State, "2010 Primary Candidate List," June 9, 2010
  12. Rasmussen Reports, “Election 2010: South Dakota Governor: Daugaard (R) Still Ahead of Heidepriem (D)”, October 9, 2010
  13. Rasmussen Reports, “Election 2010: South Dakota Governor: Daugaard (R) 57%, Heidepriem (D) 28%”, September 8, 2010
  14. Rasmussen Reports, “Election 2010: South Dakota Governor: Daugaard (R) 59%, Heidepriem (D) 27%”, August 7, 2010
  15. Rasmussen Reports, “Election 2010: South Dakota Governor: Daugaard (R) 52%, Heidepriem (D) 35%”, July 12, 2010
  16. Rasmussen Reports, “Election 2010: South Dakota Governor: Daugaard (R) 52%, Heidepriem (D) 36%”, June 15, 2010
  17. [More complete methodology and sampling tabs are available at]
  18. US Election Atlas, “1998 Gubernatorial General Election Results - South Dakota”
  19. / South Dakota Secretary of State, “1998 General Election Official Canvass Statewide Candidates”
  20. US Election Atlas, “2002 Gubernatorial General Election Results - South Dakota”
  21. / South Dakota Secretary of State, “Governor Official Returns”
  22. US Election Atlas, “2006 Gubernatorial General Election Results - South Dakota”
  23. / South Dakota Secretary of State, “Governor Official Returns”
  24. Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections', accessed July 28, 2010