On February 26, the Attorney General of South Dakota wrote a letter to attorneys for the Libertarian and Constitution Parties. Those two parties are currently suing South Dakota over the March 29 deadline to submit a petition for party status. The letter says the parties, or any parties, don’t need a petition if they just want to be on the general election ballot for President and for statewide state executive positions other than Governor (i.e., Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Attorney General, Public Utilities Commissioner, etc.)
Until this letter arrived, virtually everyone had believed that a group could not become a qualified party in South Dakota unless it submitted a petition of 2.5% of the last gubernatorial vote, which, this year, is 6,936 signatures.
In South Dakota, parties nominate by convention for some offices, and with primaries for other office. The letter says that parties can be on the general election ballot, with no petition, for all the offices in which state law says parties use conventions. That includes presidential elector, of course. The 6,936 signatures are only needed if the new party wants to nominate for Governor, U.S. Senate, U.S. House, or state legislature.