As South Dakota campaigns launch, Thune mulls retirement

January 3, 2022

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — South Dakota political candidates are revving into full campaign mode this week, with one big exception — Republican Sen. John Thune.

He has delayed a re-election announcement as he considers retirement.

Thune has held his Senate seat for three terms and wields power as the second-ranking Republican in Senate leadership.

He had planned to announce a re-election decision over the holidays. But the senator has made no indication he is any closer to a decision.

If he retires, it could upend national Republican politics and create a scramble within the South Dakota GOP to fill the void.