George J. Nelson has announced his state Senate candidacy for District 34, which consists of most of Rapid City's westside as well as a portion of north Rapid west of Haines Avenue.
"I have worked my entire legal career as an attorney tirelessly pursuing justice, whether it be as a prosecutor, defense attorney or plaintiff's attorney," Nelson said in a news release. "Like our legal system, our political system works best when we have representation on both sides of an issue. I'm running for the Legislature so the voters have a choice. If elected, I'll strive for transparency and legislation that is vetted through strong debate."
Nelson, a Democrat, said he will advocate for the best interests of the district.
"I will not be subservient to the governor. I will bring balance and fresh ideas to Pierre. It has been very easy for the Legislature to hide their mistakes but not to prevent their consequences on South Dakota's voters."
One important issue for Nelson is health care availability, which can start with Medicaid expansion, he said.
"South Dakota taxpayers are paying for Medicare coverage for everyone else, but we're one of just 13 states that don't reap the benefits. Hard-working South Dakotans whose jobs have evaporated in the pandemic are also deprived of essential Medicare," he said.
Nelson said he strongly advocates transparency in state government and protection of water resources in the Black Hills. "Exploratory mining near Lake Pactola threatens our drinking water," he said.
Nelson practices law in Rapid City and has been serving on boards for governmental entities, non-profits and youth organizations over the past 25 years in the community. George and his wife, Leigh, have three children, Carter, 23, Delaney, 20, and Luke, 16.