On February 27, the South Dakota Senate Local Government Committee passed HB 1018, which lets ballot-qualified parties remove themselves from the ballot. The purpose of this is to enable Americans Elect to terminate its qualified party status. Without the bill, the party would have its own primary in 2014, whether it wants it or not.
The Senate Committee considered an amendment to the bill that would have made it more difficult for all minor parties to remain on the ballot. The amendment to the bill, which was not passed, would have required a party to meet the vote test in presidential election years as well as in midterm years. Current law says a party only loses its status when it fails to get 2.5% for Governor. If the amendment had passed, the vote test would also need to be met for President. There was also some discussion of making the vote test applicable in both presidential and midterm years but saying it only had to be met once every four years, but that idea really wouldn’t have changed the current law and it was also abandoned.